We’ve considered Kira Noodleman elemental to Team Bee since she joined us as an intern after her first year of Berkeley Haas in 2016. This fall, diploma in hand, she returned and became a Bee investor. Our resident blockchain and ag-tech expert, she also works in dealflow interviewing dozens of potential Bee portfolio companies each month. She is involved in marketing and company-building for both Bee and portfolio companies
The expertise we’re tapping comes from Kira’s career as a product manager in emerging markets, supporting financial services, “gamified” e-commerce, and data visualization projects. Perhaps her most significant project prior to grad school was on Google’s Project Ara, where she was one of the driving forces in creating a disruptive hardware ecosystem to deliver the mobile internet to six billion people. She co-led a 35-person team charged with designing and implementing the project’s minimum viable product at its launch in Puerto Rico.
How Kira ably balanced the deep thinking her previous projects required with their emergent nature and circumstances demonstrated qualities excellent for venture capital. At Haas, she had the opportunity to apply that background to many entrepreneurship initiatives, making her an even better asset for Bee. We wanted someone who could stand on our shoulders and look way, way out to the frontier curve of technological innovation and identify opportunities others weren’t seeing yet.
Kira says it best herself: “I come from a new generation. Bee has given me the opportunity to lead research on new technologies and paradigms that are going to shape the years and decades to come.”
Kira graduated from Haas but she gets back to campus and Cal events often to represent Bee and keep her connections live. You’ll also see her at investment community events, and gatherings that focus on women in startup and VC. We’re already asking ourselves how we ever did without her.