Sagar Sanghvi, Instacart’s chief finance officer, left the on-demand grocery delivery startup earlier this year after nearly six years. He’s now going back to his investing roots. Sanghvi will work as a partner at Accel, focusing on global growth-stage consumer and enterprise investments.
Sanghvi was the vice president of finance and strategy at Instacart before becoming the company’s CFO. He took over as CFO of Instacart in 2019, after Ravi Gupta, who left the firm to join Sequoia Capital as a partner on the growth team.
Sanghvi and Gupta worked together at KKR as investors (after Sanghvi had worked as an analyst for Goldman Sachs), and it’s worth noting that their career paths are comparable, with Sanghvi initially working in finance and then becoming an operator before moving into venture capital. In 2015, they both joined Instacart. And it was Gupta who first introduced Sanghvi to Accel’s Miles Clements.
Sanghvi joined Instacart when it had about 300 people. It had more than 1,500 by the time he left earlier this year.
“I’ve been on a roller coaster of ups and downs throughout my life. It was a typical Silicon Valley adventure. “A couple odd things happened during my time there,” he told TechCrunch. “Amazon purchased Whole Foods Market. We went through the COVID pandemic and lockdowns, which resulted in a massive surge in demand. Being in charge of the company at the time was an unusual experience.”
While Sanghvi would like to see a smaller firm “than have COVID happen to the world,” he adds it was a time when he learnt a lot while helping to expand the company.
During Sanghvi’s time at Instacart, one of the projects he worked on was a $200 million investment round in October 2020, which valued the firm at $17.7 billion. (It has since raised another $265 million at a valuation of $39 billion.) In reality, the corporation raised more than $2 billion during its tenure.
But now, out of Accel’s Palo Alto office, Sanghvi will be the one investing in other startups’ rounds.
While his Instacart experience is clearly relevant to the consumer arena, Sanghvi stated that he will be working with a variety of enterprise solutions in addition to consumer-focused startups.
“One of the things that drew me to Miles and the team was the experience and success Accel as a firm has had to invest in many different types of startups inside the technology sector,” he told TechCrunch. Clements commended Sanghvi’s “humility and adaptability,” as he put it.