Prior to joining SoftBank, Anthony was a managing director at Moelis & Company, an independent investment bank. Prior to Moelis he was at Bank of America Merrill Lynch. He holds a MA in economics and management from Oxford University and is a CFA charterholder.
- Atom Learning
- Cambridge Mobile Telematics
How did your background prepare you for your current role?
My prior role was as an advisor to companies on strategic transactions that would shape their futures. The firm I worked for, Moelis & Company, was itself a young organization in high growth mode that was established as a disruptor to the investment banking industry. Our own internal entrepreneurialism shaped how we worked with businesses and introduced me to the excitement of working with entrepreneur-backed companies. Joining SBIA was a way to deepen my work with founders while focusing on the technology that is shaping the world.
What inspires you about your work?
It's the scale of the value creation that's possible in today's technology companies. The world's most valuable businesses are technology companies, and almost all of them were founded quite recently by entrepreneurs. You've got companies valued at $100 billion that are barely 10 years old. In any other industry, you'd grow at a completely different pace. These companies are changing everything about how the economy works, and we get to help them navigate that growth thoughtfully and successfully.
What do you admire most about the entrepreneurs you’re working with?
The biggest thing is their determination. When you look at the success stories, you sometimes forget just how difficult it is to scale a business globally. You’ve got to have a vision of doing something that hasn't been done before, something that no company has thought of, and then do it in a way that actually works and scales. Usually it’s a massive opportunity, but it’s also a massive undertaking. I have the incredible privilege of spending time with these founders, debating strategy with them, and supporting them in the hard work of turning their vision into reality.
How would you describe your investment philosophy?
I invest in teams. No single individual has all of the skills needed to build a successful business, but if you know how to harness the talents of a group of people, you can produce a great outcome. This is where diversity becomes a real asset for a business, because people bring unique perspectives and challenge each other's thinking. So I look for founders who have recruited a deep, diverse team and then built the kind of culture, shared vision, and positive energy that allows that team to thrive. Not that many companies are able to get it right, but when they do, it leads to great outcomes.
What should founders expect when they work with you?
Every founder is different, and they're all at different places in their journey, so the first thing I do is gather as much information as possible. We act as a sounding board and strategic advisor to the companies we invest in. Some companies want us to use the breadth of our available resources to help them implement solutions, such as growth initiatives, financing, or M&A. In other cases, the management team is doing such an exceptional job that the best thing we can do is let them run their business with minimal interference, but make ourselves constantly available should they need any support. The key is to build great relationships with the founders so that we can tailor our approach to their most critical needs.