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In this week's episode of the Future Construct Podcast (44 min interview), we are excited to feature Heather Widman (@HBWids), Principal at Building Ventures (@buildingvc, "BV"), and your host Amy Peck (@AmyPeckXR). In her role, Heather sources and evaluates investment opportunities in the operation and experience phases of the building lifecycle. Additionally, she advises portfolio companies leveraging her years of experience in developing and bringing tech products to market. She works closely with the founding teams at Canoa (@trycanoa), Dandelion (@dandelionenergy), enVerid (@enverid), Envoy (@envoythereGoContractor (@_gocontractor), Join.build (@joindotbuild), and Join Digital (@JoinEnterprise). She spearheads Building Ventures’ investment activities within the real estate tech (i.e., PropTech) community. Joining the firm in early 2019, she brings more than fifteen years of tech and startup operating leadership to the BV investment team.

Click to listen to our interview with Heather on Apple, Spotify, or Google, or watch on our Facebook or YouTube channels.

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“We have a huge boom in demand for single-family residential right now, a lot of that being driven by COVID and people just wanting to have more space or their own space...I definitely think we will see more investment in this space and more startups innovating in this space because the product just isn’t good enough today and the experience isn’t good enough today and COVID is trapping us in our homes.” - Heather Widman, Principal, Building Ventures via: https://news.crunchbase.com/news/home-buying-startups/ 

Before joining BV, Heather led the Product, Customer, and Brand Marketing functions at SaaS startup WordStream (acquired by Gannett (@Gannett) in 2018). Prior to WordStream (@WordStream), she held product management and marketing leadership positions at Boston startup ownerIQ (@ownerIQ) (acquired by Inmar (@InmarInc)) and Fortune 50 Express Scripts (acquired by Cigna (@Cigna)).

Heather is actively involved in the building tech community through organizations including CREtech (@cretech), Nexus Labs Pro Community, (@Ghost), Real Innovation Community, Boston Build Tech (@BostonBuildtech), and Women in PropTech (@WomenInPropTech). She is also active in the broader venture and startup ecosystem as a member of All Raise (@AllRaise) (VC Champion Selectee); as a volunteer and mentor at organizations including MIT designX (@mitdesignx) and MassChallenge (@MassChallenge); as well as at her almae matres Boston College (BA) (@BostonCollege) Washington University in St. Louis (MBA) (@WUSTL). Heather works and resides in Boston.

BV is championing disruptive ideas for a better-built world. They offer the perfect mix of capital, mentorship, and industry connections. As-built environment pioneers, their mission is to provide access to funding, rich knowledge, and decades of experience, to entrepreneurs, partners, and disruptive thinkers. Together, they will build a better world.

Highlights of Heather’s interview with host Amy Peck (@AmyPeckXR) include:

  • Her understanding of the customer and go-to-market piece, coming from the "consumer-centric" side of the venture capitalism space
  • Her passion for sustainability and how that drives some of the ways she looks at her investments
  • Discussion about some of the new industry business models, what she's seeing, and what she thinks is really viable now
  • Heather swapping roles with Amy as host and asking the everlasting personal question about what Amy wants to see in the future

Click to listen to our interview with Heather on Apple, Spotify, or Google, or watch on our Facebook or YouTube channels.

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Show Notes

0:12  Amy Peck introduces Heather Widman, Principal at Building Ventures.

09:11  Because you come from the "customer-centric" side of venture capitalism, you understand the customer and go-to-market piece, so I'd love to hear how you work with some of your portfolio companies?

14:11  Welcome back to the podcast! [Heather Widman] here with Amy Peck. We have time for one last question. So Amy, If you could project yourself 20 years into the future, and if you could have any product or service or gadget or thing, that for you, would make your life better or make you personally happy, what would it be and what would it do?

19:30  I know you're particularly passionate about sustainability and that drives some of the ways you look at your investments. So what are some other companies that are working to solve that with new buildings, but also solve it retroactively?

26:39  You mentioned the thesis of how you are looking at companies and what you're looking for, and in a combination of what are some of the new business models, new trends and ways owners can maximize space. Can we talk about some of those business models, what you're seeing and what you think is really viable now?

40:43  If you could project yourself 20 years into the future, and if you could have any product or service or gadget or thing, that for you, would make your life better or make you personally happy, what would it be and what would it do?

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Luke Lightning

About the Author

Luke joined the BIM Designs team in June 2020 as the Head of Business Development and helps oversee the business development and marketing team's objectives. With over 8 years of business development and sales experience working with startups, accelerators, investors and global enterprise-level companies, he has successfully helped startups scale their sales operations. Previously, he worked in the biotech industry as a research leader for over 9 years resulting in an IPO in 2011.