Dec 7, 2021 • 1HR 3M

Lux Capital's co-founder Peter Hebert on the firm's 20 year journey, creating multi-generational success, and the changing dynamics in VC (including their use of SPAC's)

Episode 63

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Samir Kaji
Venture Unlocked is the playbook for starting, operating, & scaling a successful venture capital firm. Samir Kaji, Host of Venture Unlocked has +20-years of experience assisting & advising startups and venture firms. Listen for VC fund guidance.
Episode details

Follow me @samirkaji for my thoughts on the venture market, with a focus on the continued evolution of the VC landscape.

This week we have the treat of hosting Peter Hébert, co-founder and managing partner of Lux Capital, a 21-year-old firm that is a pioneer of deep-tech investing. The firm has nearly $4B in AUM and has led investments in Desktop Metal, Latch, Matterport, and Auris Health which was acquired by J&J in a $6 billion transaction.

Prior to Lux, Peter began his career at Lehman Brothers, where he worked in the firm’s Equity Research group. He did his undergrad at Syracuse University and was the Founding President of its first venture organization, Future Business Leaders and Entrepreneurs.

I’ve known Peter for nearly a decade and have found the Lux story to be so enjoyable to follow. This episode was a real treat as Peter spoke about the 20+ year “overnight success” story of Lux, which included many difficult times in the early days. Over the years, they had many inflection points and in our episode we talk through those inflection points, how they’ve managed a bi-coastal firm, and Peter’s general thoughts on the market.

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In this episode we discuss:

01:33 Why Peter and his co-founders started Lux towards the end of the Dot Com bubble and what they saw as the opportunity

03:14 The challenge of raising under what was an esoteric thesis

06:17 The early signals that acted as signals that pointed toward success

09:03 The biggest inflection points of Lux Capital’s first ten years

16:00 Peter’s relationship with his co-founder and co-managing partner Josh Wolfe and how it’s evolved over time

18:46 How the partnership works on a day-to-day basis to ensure firm cohesiveness

23:33 Characteristics of new partners they look for and how they integrate new members on the team

29:21 How Lux enables an ownership mentality within the firm

33:37 How they became a bi-coastal firm nearly a decade ago, and managing the firm with remote partners

39:05 How follow-on for deep tech was more difficult and how they managed their own portfolio construction to account for this.

44:55 Where SPACs fit in as tools for founders and investors

53:18 The most transformative piece of career advice he’s ever received

55:24 The photo Peter has on his office wall, and it’s meaning

58:59 The piece of advice he would give to emerging managers

Mentioned in this episode:
Lux Capital

I’d love to know what you took away from this conversation with Peter. Follow me @SamirKaji and give me your insights and questions with the hashtag #ventureunlocked. If you’d like to be considered as a guest or have someone you’d like to hear from (GP or LP), drop me a direct message on Twitter.

Podcast Production support provided by Agent Bee Agency