UC Berkeley and its programs, people, and principles are foundational to life at Bee Partners: Tim, Kira, and I are all graduates. A third of Bee portfolio companies came up through Berkeley. Bee Partners proudly founded, embraces and supports CalFounders. And we serve as mentors at SkyDeck, and speak or serve on panels for classes and competitions including LAUNCH, Bear Trap, The House, Space Technologies at Cal, and the VC Speaker Series for Haas Venture Fellows (HVF).  

HVF is a small group of students in each MBA class that represents the UC Berkeley entrepreneurial ecosystem in the Bay Area venture capital community. I was one of those students way back, and we’ve deepened our support as our firm has grown. Each year, we invite a student or students from HVF to join us in an intern role as a Bee Associate. Zach Thigpen ably filled that role this year. We were very pleased with his work, enjoyed his company, and are sorry to see him go (but glad that our HVF interns are never far away).  

Zach dedicatedly immersed himself in the world of venture capital and Bee Partners. We are proud of his growth and production. And as much as we’ve helped Zach develop and sharpen his skills, we’re grateful for the improvements he has left in his wake.  

A few Zach highlights:

  • Since Zach joined Bee, the length of time for companies in our deal flow pipeline has been cut in half.
  • Zach created a marketing payload of useful resources and strategies for companies to go to market and attract their first customers.
  • He worked with several Bee portfolio companies on a variety of projects, including investment deck review, industry analysis, market sizing/segmentation, customer discovery and positioning, and most importantly, long-term strategy.
  • Zach helped form and articulate some deep Bee concepts in a series of blog posts that express our most important investment thinking.
  • Zach attended numerous industry and startup events, building the Bee brand consistently with our principles.

And yes, that’s just a few of the Zach-benefits we enjoyed!

It’s always hard to let our interns go, but exciting to watch them launch into new endeavors. His contribution to our Bee Partners tribal knowledge will be long felt, and his energy missed.  We’re proud to have Zach as an ambassador for Bee Partners, and can’t wait to see what the future holds for him.