Julian von Eckartsberg has been Managing Director Europe at BurdaPrincipal Investments (BPI) since October 2021. In our interview, Julian von Eckartsberg provides insights into this highly dynamic field.
For the second time, Equality Group, a London-based consultancy specialized in diversity and inclusion (D&I) in the finance and technology industry, has published its inclusion index. It ranks the top 20 venture capital and private equity firms based on the dimensions of diversity and inclusion. Burda Principal Investments (BPI), the growth capital arm of Hubert Burda Media, is once again the only VC fund with German origin ranked among the top 10.
Diversity has been a foundational value for BPI since inception in terms of location, background and gender, and influences all decision-making processes within the team. One-third of the investment team is female and increasing – and 67% of the invested capital is in teams with female founders.
"We are very happy to be performing well on some key diversity & inclusion metrics and at the same time, we understand there is always room for improvement and so are currently focusing on various new initiatives to further enhance our position here.”
Clare McCartney Beer, Chief Operating Officer at BPI
Far too often, people make decisions based on entrenched patterns and (unconscious) categorizations. With various internal initiatives such as "unconscious bias trainings", BPI wants to educate and raise awareness. Job advertisements are also checked to ensure that they meet diversity criteria and within the recruitment process, BPI relies on a variety of external partners to ensure a broad selection of candidates. In addition, BPI focuses on the exchange of knowledge with portfolio companies and gathering data to better understand the latest developments internally and with their investments. This is a thematic that will be addressed in their second ESG & Sustainability review planned for May.
"We perceive diversity not only as a significant added value for our employees, the company, and the portfolio companies," explains McCartney Beer. "It is a crucial success factor for founders looking for new investors, potential new hires, and the industry. It is a very positive development that the whole industry now focuses more on the topic and continues to move towards more diverse and inclusive practices."
The Index ranks the top twenty private equity and venture capital firms on diversity and inclusion along with six categories, including explicit support for D&I, work-life balance, and leadership. For the index, 400 global private equity and venture capital firms with at least $1 billion in assets under management were assessed. Surveyed for the first time in 2021, the index enables firms and the industry to track progress in D&I on an annual basis.
More information on the study results can be found here.