Karma School

Episode 049

Private Equity Spotlight: The Growth Stage Playbook with Erica Blob of Brighton Park Capital

In this must-listen episode of the Karma School of Business Podcast, host Sean Mooney is joined by Erica Blob, Partner at Brighton Park Capital, for an insightful discussion that delves into the intricate world of growth-stage investing. Erica brings a wealth of experience from her dynamic journey through the finance sector, from investment banking to her pivotal role at Brighton Park Capital, where she focuses on nurturing high-potential growth-stage companies.

Erica shares her transition from the fast-paced environment of capital markets to the operational side of e-commerce at Walmart.com, and how this experience shaped her nuanced understanding of what it takes to drive a company forward. Her return to investment banking during the tumultuous period of 2007 set the stage for a decade working with two of the investment world's most influential Steves - Steve Cohen and Steve Klinsky - where she honed her investment philosophy and developed a deep appreciation for building transformative businesses.

The conversation takes a turn to explore the creation of Brighton Park Capital, where Erica and her team are redefining the private equity landscape by combining operational expertise with an entrepreneurial spirit to support growth-stage companies. They discuss the firm's commitment to transparency and partnership with their LPs, offering them real-time insights into the performance and potential of their investments.

Erica also provides a glimpse into the current strategic initiatives at Brighton Park Capital, highlighting the importance of M&A opportunities, offshoring for talent acquisition, and the transformative impact of AI on software development productivity. She emphasizes the significance of experienced, low-ego entrepreneurs and the value of operational executives in scaling businesses from tens to hundreds of millions in revenue.

Listeners will walk away with a mini-MBA's worth of knowledge as Erica distills her approach to identifying operationally excellent companies, the intricacies of value creation, and the critical role of customer-centricity. Her personal anecdotes, including a unique travel life hack involving a sleep-inducing pillow, add a relatable touch to the discussion.

Tune in for an engaging and educational conversation that not only charts Erica Blob's path through the financial sector but also offers actionable insights into the strategies that are propelling Brighton Park Capital and their portfolio companies to new heights.

1:38 - Erica's path to private equity including learning from some industry legends
14:14 - The challenges and triumphs of establishing Brighton Park Capital during the pandemic
20:01 - Key traits Brighton Park Capital looks for in growth-stage companies and their strategic approach to fostering operational excellence
30:54 - An innovative approach to engaging with Limited Partners, emphasizing transparency and real-time information sharing
34:24 - The current thematic focuses for value creation within the portfolio, including M&A, offshoring for talent, and leveraging AI for software development productivity
42:16 - A life-hack for frequent travelers

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