Portfolio Manager

Portfolio Manager

Acumen America

San Francisco, CA   |   October 14, 2019

Acumen America is looking for a Portfolio Manager to join our San Francisco-based, US venture investing team.  We’re looking for someone with 7 – 10 years of investing experience and a proven commitment to tackling poverty. The right candidate is bold, creative, and can excel in a fast-paced, startup environment.


Acumen is changing the way the world tackles poverty by investing in companies, leaders, and ideas. We invest patient capital in businesses whose products and services help people living in poverty to transform their lives. To date, Acumen has positively impacted 270 million lives by investing $120M in 119 innovative, early-stage companies in Africa, Latin America, South Asia, and the United States. But investment isn’t just about capital, we’ve been investing in relationships for years… connecting with emerging leaders in their own countries and engaging them in extended collective dialogue, moral inquiry, and skill-building. 

Acumen America

The Portfolio Manager will be joining a small team building a portfolio of game-changing companies focused on tackling poverty in the United States. The team is responsible for finding, vetting, structuring and managing investments in companies that serve low-income Americans in our three portfolio sectors: financial inclusion, workforce development, and health. This position is entrepreneurial and preferred candidates will be excited by a start-up environment.

About the role – Portfolio Manager

The Portfolio Manager will source and evaluate new investment opportunities, lead due diligence on high potential opportunities, and assist with structuring deal terms. The Portfolio Manager will use their investing skills to evaluate the growth and return potential of companies from both a financial and social impact perspective and will prepare and present analysis to Acumen America’s Investment Committee.

The Portfolio Manager will develop research and analysis related to Acumen America’s investment portfolio and its performance, fundraising and strategic partnership initiatives, and management of portfolio operations.  The Portfolio Manager will contribute to actively building and cultivating Acumen America’s networks in the venture and impact investing communities and will develop insight and communications pieces for external audiences.  The Portfolio Manager will also be responsible for managing relationships with select portfolio companies, with support from senior team members.

The individual in this role must be comfortable working in a fast-paced, changing environment, executing quickly on a range of transactional responsibilities, as well as thinking critically to add value and solve problems. More specifically, you will be responsible for:

Early Stage Venture Investing

  • Identify, cultivate, and review a pipeline of early-stage investment opportunities providing critical services to low-income Americans
  • Conduct thorough due diligence and investment analysis, including financial modeling, valuation review, and structuring
  • Prepare and present detailed and compelling investment documentation for Acumen America’s Investment Committee

Portfolio Management

  • Own relationships with certain portfolio companies, tracking performance and providing active support
  • Assess portfolio company needs related to post-investment support; design and implement post-investment management interventions
  • Design and evaluate key metrics to measure the social and financial returns on investments
  • Develop long-term relationships with external stakeholders including funders, advisors, thought leaders, sector and functional experts to provide support across the portfolio

Portfolio Operations

  • Work with the Acumen America team to analyze and document data-driven explanations for portfolio decisions; to extract and document investment-specific and general insights; to analyze metrics data to identify patterns, and to channel that data to outputs for marketing and fundraising efforts
  • Produce discrete knowledge and research materials based on lessons from Acumen’s portfolio 
Qualifications and skills
  • 7-10 years of experience in venture capital, private equity, investment banking, or investment management, including experience with financial and operational due diligence of early-stage businesses
  • Superior financial and business analysis skills, as demonstrated by prior experience
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills; ability to present arguments and analysis in a clear and succinct manner to Acumen management, partners and investees
  • Strong ability to take initiative with research and analysis and produce valuable results in conditions of uncertainty
  • Solid operational skills including problem-solving and project management skills, including the ability to work and deliver projects independently, proactively and under pressure
  • Familiarity with the social enterprise and impact investing sectors; a demonstrated commitment to tackling challenges of poverty is preferred
  • Must be authorized to work in the U.S. on a permanent basis

Additional characteristics we’re looking for in all roles at Acumen:

  • Commitment to, and enthusiasm for, the organization’s mission and business model, and respect for our core values: generosity, accountability, humility, audacity, listening, leadership, integrity, respect
  • Exceptional relationship and interpersonal skills: courtesy, tact, empathy, patience and strong team orientation
  • Strong communication skills and ability to be a “storyteller” of our work
  • Curiosity – proactive and continuous learner; always questioning, researching and testing ideas and assumptions 
The Application Process

To apply, please create a Basic Profile using this link or click the Express Interest button. The process takes no more than 5 minutes and all you need is your resume.

Individuals who complete the profile by Wednesday, October 30th will be given priority; therefore, we encourage you to submit yours soon!

When you apply, we kindly ask you to remove your schools from your resume. There is no need to reformat your resume, and you may leave your degree (e.g. “B.A. Economics”). Just remember to remove any undergraduate and graduate school name references where possible. This “bias blind” process is aimed at opening this opportunity to more candidates; reviewing applicants on performance assessments instead of resume proxies (e.g., where you went to school).

The overall evaluation process will look to follow this anticipated timeline:

  • Late October: Selected candidates asked to complete short-answer questions.
  • Early November: Phone interview with Acumen America staff.
  • Early November: Finalist candidates will be asked to complete a timed, blinded, trial assignment.
  • Middle of November: Finalists will come for an in-person, multi-team-member group interview in our San Francisco office. Candidate references will also be checked at this step.
  • Early December: Offers extended. 

Lastly, while this is an option to submit a cover letter, we kindly request that you not submit one as it will not be read.

This evaluation process will follow best practices shown to reduce bias in decision making and may be different from other application processes you have experienced.

If you have any questions about this opportunity, please feel free to email ataleb@koyapartners.com.