Hiring the team for ISA Ventures

Eric Engelmann
5 min readSep 14, 2020

It isn’t common to have venture jobs in Iowa. As Iowa’s newest venture fund, we are looking to build our team from the ground up and are looking for the very best to join us.

The first two roles we’ll hire are an associate and a financial analyst, both described below.

Associate

ISA Ventures’ Associate is primarily responsible for working with the Manager in evaluating and recommending potential venture capital deals, writing deal memos, and building relationships with founders.

Specifically, this role will focus on:

  • Scouting and assisting in creation and building of deal flow,
  • Forming relationships with founders with high growth potential to identify prospective deals
  • Preparing detailed documentation of those relationships (e.g. call notes, capturing data about target companies and analysis over time)
  • Writing deal memos arguing for and against making an investment decision with clear articulation of investment thesis
  • Conducting due diligence evaluations of prospective deals, including:
    — Market and industry research
    — Competitive research
    — Technology research
    — Gathering references from customers
    — Financial and valuation analysis
  • Building relationships and working with other investors, venture firms and investor groups
  • Jointly presenting potential deals to Investment Committee with research findings, analysis, assumptions, and rationale
  • Online outreach: participating in and contributing blog posts, social media posts, podcasts, participating in startup events and conferences

Qualifications:

  • 1–3+ years of work experience in a similar field (e.g. investment banking, consulting, venture capital or private equity)
  • MBA or similar degree, or similar work experience
  • Demonstrated analytical skills; proactive and self-motivated
  • Experience with cash flow modeling and investment valuation techniques
  • Very strong English written and oral communication skills
  • Skilled in use of Office and GSuite applications
  • Detail-oriented
  • Founder or operator experience preferred

You’ll be part of a small team. While the role requires a lot of independent work and initiative, much of it will be done collaboratively with other team members.

Compensation: Base salary plus bonus and a share of Carried Interest

About ISA Ventures

ISA Ventures is Iowa’s first multi-stage venture capital studio, working closely with founders to build Iowa-based companies through their growth and evolution. We focus on companies in biotechnology, healthcare, and medical tech; education tech; engineering and automation tech; agriculture, food & bio-processing tech; insurance & finance tech; and transportation & logistics technologies. The Fund is new — formed in 2020 — but based on six years of investing in early stage companies through Iowa Startup Accelerator. Therefore, this team is new, too. We’re looking for the right team members to create something unique to Iowa but still competitive on a global stage.

Remote-friendly

We have a sweet office building in Cedar Rapids to work from, yet remote work is expected now, during COVID-19, and indefinitely. All team members are expected to be Iowa residents, but can be located anywhere in the state, working remotely, so long as they can make it to Cedar Rapids on a regular basis, several times a month, for in-person meetings.

Benefits

ISA Ventures offers a competitive benefits package, including

  • Health & dental insurance
  • A 401k retirement plan with match
  • An extremely flexible Open Paid Time Off policy

To apply

Send a résumé and cover letter to hello@isaventures.com.

For extra consideration, write a one-page summary example of a deal memo advocating for an investment you’d like to have made, and why. We don’t expect you to have any special or precise information about the company, we’re looking for your thought process.

Feel free to include anything else that you think helps tell us why you’re the best candidate for this role.

Financial Analyst

ISA Ventures’ Financial Analyst is responsible for the number crunching side of due diligence of venture capital deals and monitoring fund and portfolio performance.

Specifically, this role will focus on:

  • Working on venture capital investment deals, including:
    — Conducting financial analysis and modeling of potential deals, existing portfolio investments, and exits
    — Assisting with due diligence of prospective investments
    — Assisting with writing deal memos, especially as pertains to deal valuation and comparison to alternative investments, the target business’ financial model and assumptions, modeling potential exit scenarios
  • Working with the Manager on overall fund financial performance, including:
    — Assisting with fund valuation analysis and investing strategy
    — Assisting with annual audits and tax reporting
    — Performing quarterly portfolio performance analysis
    — Preparing ad hoc analysis and reporting to management and investors
    — Drafting financial communications to investors
  • Gathering and reporting on investment data across the state and regionally, providing benchmarks and other comparisons
  • Gathering, managing, and reporting on portfolio company data over time, e.g. revenue growth, cash flow, etc.
  • In some cases, working directly with portfolio companies to increase revenue, improve operations, strengthen financial controls, and increase shareholder value
  • Financial reporting for the Fund management company
  • Jointly presenting potential deals to Investment Committee with research findings, analysis, assumptions, and rationale
  • Online outreach: participating in and contributing blog posts, social media posts, podcasts, participating in startup events and conferences

Qualifications:

  • At least 3 years of work experience in a similar field (e.g. investment banking, consulting, venture capital or private equity)
  • MBA, Master of Finance, or similar degree, or similar work experience
  • Demonstrated financial analysis skills, experience with cash flow modeling and investment valuation techniques
  • Very strong English written and oral communication skills
  • Skilled in use of Office and GSuite applications
  • Detail-oriented
  • Transaction experience on either the buy or sell side preferred
  • Founder or operator experience preferred

You’ll be part of a small team. While the role requires a lot of independent work and initiative, much of it will be done collaboratively with other team members.

Compensation: Base salary plus bonus and a share of Carried Interest

About ISA Ventures

ISA Ventures is Iowa’s first multi-stage venture capital studio, working closely with founders to build Iowa-based companies through their growth and evolution. We focus on companies in biotechnology, healthcare, and medical tech; education tech; engineering and automation tech; agriculture, food & bio-processing tech; insurance & finance tech; and transportation & logistics technologies. The Fund is new — formed in 2020 — but based on six years of investing in early stage companies through Iowa Startup Accelerator. Therefore, this team is new, too. We’re looking for the right team members to create something unique to Iowa but still competitive on a global stage.

Remote-friendly

We have a sweet office building in Cedar Rapids to work from, yet remote work is expected now, during COVID-19, and indefinitely. All team members are expected to be Iowa residents, but can be located anywhere in the state, working remotely, so long as they can make it to Cedar Rapids on a regular basis, several times a month, for in-person meetings.

Benefits

ISA Ventures offers a competitive benefits package, including

  • Health & dental insurance
  • A 401k retirement plan with match
  • An extremely flexible Open Paid Time Off policy

To apply:

Send a résumé and cover letter to hello@isaventures.com.

For extra consideration, write a one-page summary example of a deal memo advocating for an investment you’d like to have made, and why — focusing primarily on the financial aspects of the deal. We don’t expect you to have any special or precise information about the company, we’re looking for your thought process. Alternatively, give us your thoughts on a recent, prominent deal and the likely economics around it that intrigue you, and why.

Feel free to include anything else that you think helps tell us why you’re the best candidate for this role.

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Eric Engelmann

I build technology companies, invest in and mentor startups, and grow teams that can solve important problems in the world.