ConstructConstruct Logo

We invest in the transformation of foundational industries.

Connect, Automate, Transform, Construct.

Perspective

Foundational industries represent more than half of the US GDP.

The Problem

Unrealized innovation
due to chronic under-investment

There is a massive multi-category slice of the real economy—spanning manufacturing to mobility—that’s been under-innovated for decades and is failing consumer demands. World-class founders with bold visions are increasingly turning their attention to these categories. Construct brings the necessary investing and operating experience to deeply partner with early stage companies transforming these challenging foundational sectors.

Investments

We invest in a limited set of companies, setting aside the time and the resources to support founders and their teams. Here are a few.
Copia
Copia

Copia connects the industrial world through modern software development tools.

copia.io
Tradeswell
Tradeswell

Tradeswell automates what e-commerce brands need in order to grow profitably.

tradeswell.com
ChargeLab
ChargeLab

ChargeLab connects electric vehicle infrastructure around the globe.

chargelab.co
Chef Robotics
Chef Robotics

Chef Robotics automates food production.

chefrobotics.ai
Veho
Veho

Veho transforms parcel shipping into a competitive advantage for brands.

shipveho.com
Hadrian
Hadrian

Hadrian transforms manufacturing for space & defense.

hadrian.co
Verve
Verve

Verve transforms wearables in logistics and industrial markets.

vervemotion.com

Past Experience

We’ve had incredible runs with remarkable teams—partnering, advising, guiding, and supporting from earliest stages to significant scale. Here are some examples.
Uber
Uber

Uber (NYSE: UBER) transforms the movement of people and things.

uber.com
Desktop Metal
Desktop Metal

Desktop Metal (NYSE: DM) automates high-speed, high-performance, 3D printing at production scale.

desktopmetal.com
Onshape
Onshape

Onshape (acquired by PTC) connects data and designers across the product development and design process.

onshape.com
MotoRefi
MotoRefi

MotoRefi connects consumers to strengthen their financial future through easy and online auto refinancing.

motorefi.com
Guideline
Guideline

Guideline transforms retirement savings by making 401ks accessible to all.

guideline.com
Tulip
Tulip

Tulip connects systems and tools for the manufacturing workforce.

tulip.co
Calibrate
Calibrate

Calibrate transforms the weight loss experience through metabolic reset and behavior therapy delivered via one-on-one telehealth coaching.

www.joincalibrate.com
Framebridge
Framebridge

Framebridge transforms how people tell their story by framing the things they love.

www.framebridge.com
Formlabs
Formlabs

Formlabs transforms digital fabrication, so anyone can make anything.

formlabs.com

Our Team

A partnership built for partnership.

Our approach is built around balance. We bring our whole team's investing and operating experiences to everything we do. We don't shy away from hard work and aim to be a founder’s first call along the way.
Our Team

Dayna Grayson

Co-founder & General Partner

Dayna Grayson

A technology investor who built an early focus on the industrial sector. Lead investor in companies such as Desktop Metal (NYSE: DM), Onshape (PTC), and Framebridge (GHC), among others.

“Founders put their all into trying to make the impossible real, with little data and few resources compared to their ambition. I strive to match that with balanced resourcefulness and empathy. Being a great board member means showing up to listen and to be ready to act when needed.”

Dayna was one of the first venture capitalists to build a portfolio around the transformation of industrial sectors of our economy. She co-founded Construct to expand this focus and pursue the next generation of massive companies to be built in the tech sector, establishing the partnership with Rachel around complementary investing skills and an early-stage only focus. Prior to launching Construct, she was a partner at NEA where she backed companies creating new advances in manufacturing, automation, and vertically integrated consumer brands. She led investments in companies including Desktop Metal, Onshape, Framebridge, Tulip, Formlabs, and Guideline. In 2020, Desktop Metal (NYSE: DM) went public where she remains on the board as chair of the compensation committee. Onshape was acquired for $525m by PTC in 2019 and Framebridge was acquired by Graham Holdings in 2020.

Prior to joining NEA, Dayna was an investor at North Bridge Venture Partners in Boston. She started her career in product development and led design efforts at Blackbaud (NASDAQ: BLKB), the leading global provider of software to nonprofit organizations, as the company grew to over $130 million in revenue and completed a successful public offering.

She is a graduate of University of Virginia with a B.Sc. in Systems Engineering, and while there she built a startup using computer vision and eye-tracking for the physically handicapped. She received an MBA from Harvard Business School, where, today, she serves as a venture partner and an advisor to the MS/MBA program. Dayna is a founding member of All Raise, with the mission of improving diversity in venture capital.

Rachel Holt

Co-founder & General Partner

Rachel Holt

Operator turned investor. Early employee and a senior exec at Uber as the business achieved massive scale. Led the US/Canada Rides business, built the Incubator and the New Mobility business.

“I love founders who aren’t taking the easy road. I know firsthand that it takes a different kind of entrepreneur and team, and a different kind of investor to navigate the challenges and opportunities of the real world and am inspired by those who set out on that journey.”

As an operator, Rachel had a passion for growth and has managed almost every function from operations to marketing, engineering, product, and customer support teams. Rachel and Dayna co-founded Construct to bring that experience to early stage investing, supporting founders as they set out and to build hyper scale. Before leaving Uber in 2020, Rachel was a long-time member of Uber's Executive Leadership Team having spent almost a decade at the company. She began as one of the company’s first 30 employees and her role quickly expanded to running the US & Canada Rides business in addition to Global Marketing and Brand, and Customer Operations, which represented nearly half of Uber's bookings, and just under half of the employees. Rachel then led the company's New Mobility organization, which includes the JUMP eBike and eScooter businesses as well as running Uber's Incubator which funds and develops new products and services on Uber platform.

Before launching Construct, Rachel invested in companies such as Calibrate, Urbanstems, and Motorefi, where she serves on the board today. Rachel began her career at Bain & Company. She graduated magna cum laude from Amherst College as a 4-year All-American tennis player and earned her MBA from Stanford University, where she was an Arjay Miller Scholar. She was featured on Fortune’s 40 under 40 and was named by Fast Company as One of the Most Creative People in Business. Rachel is a native New Yorker, and Mom of 3.

Caroline Duffy

Investor

Caroline Duffy

Early stage technology investor, focused on AI. ~10 years working with software companies from ideation-phase startups to Fortune 50 institutions.

"I love partnering with founders who embrace the art of the possible, without forgetting that the journey of 1000 miles begins with a single step."

Caroline has spent the last several years building and investing in early stage AI startups, and the better part of a decade working with software companies, from ideation-phase startups to Fortune 50 institutions. Prior to Construct, Caroline was an investor at AIFund, an early stage venture fund and startup studio that invested in and built artificial intelligence companies from the ground up. Caroline focused on bridging AI technology with compelling use cases in industries that move the world forward, driving investments in overlooked and underinvested spaces like manufacturing, logistics, and industrials. She also led the incubation of several portfolio companies, including serving as interim-CEO.

Before becoming an investor, Caroline was a management consultant, partnering with Fortune 500 companies on strategy execution, often during times of significant transition in their markets, strategy, or leadership teams. She began her career as a researcher at Harvard Business School, studying the efficacy of online advertising through the use of facial recognition technology and infrared eye tracking.

Caroline received her MBA from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business, and a BA, Cum Laude, from Dartmouth College with an honors citation in quantitative data analysis.

In her spare time, Caroline is a passionate advocate for introducing more women and girls to education and career opportunities in AI. She is an active member of AllRaise, and serves on the Curator’s Circle Committee at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

Eugene Wan

Investor

Eugene Wan

An early stage investor and operator with a decade of experience, dedicated to partnering with founders audacious enough to rethink entire industries.

“Founders are giving their all to shaping the future in a way that only they can. They deserve thought partners and investors that give their all to support them—this humbles and motivates me everyday.”

Eugene has broad experience as an investor and operator in early stage companies, with a deep interest and focus on how emerging technologies enable reinvention. Most recently, he was on the founding team of The Engine, the venture capital firm affiliated with MIT. With the mission of accelerating the commercialization of research, he helped lead investments into companies such as Zapata, Form Energy, Commonwealth Fusion Systems, iSee, Kytopen, among others. Beyond this, Eugene helped build the system and infrastructure to support these companies through their earliest stages.

Before that, he served as Chief of Staff to the CEO at Galvanize—the premiere data science and data engineering education company—through a period of rapid growth and multiple rounds of financings. Galvanize was acquired by K12 (NYSE: LRN). Eugene started his career at Techstars and Foundry Group, helping to run multiple classes of Techstars Boulder—which included companies such as Digital Ocean, Salesloft, GoodApril (acqd by Intuit), and Polymorph Labs (acqd by Walmart)—then ran special projects at Foundry Group (such as FG Press, a boutique publishing firm for authors focused on entrepreneurship, venture capital, and journey of company building).

Eugene holds a BA in Economics and Political Science from University of Colorado—Boulder. There, he helped pioneer entrepreneurship education for fellow undergraduates and served on the Advisory Board for Silicon Flatirons.

Shruti Rao

Investor

Shruti Rao

Early stage investor with strong financial background. Passionate about teaming up with ambitious founders who want to transform industries and change the world.

“Being a founder is a bold undertaking. It takes a special person to have the vision to create something from nothing, to build teams and execute on that vision. I see my role as an investor to help break down barriers and be a thought partner throughout their journey.”

Shruti has spent her career prior to venture capital in financial analysis and private equity investing. Prior to joining Construct, Shruti was an investor at New Mountain Capital, a New York based private equity fund with over $30bn of assets under management. At New Mountain, she worked with executive leadership teams and board members on key strategy issues for portfolio companies as well as financial modeling and diligence for active deals.

She started her career in Investment Banking at J.P. Morgan. As part of the Leveraged Finance group, she supported and advised Fortune 500 companies on originating and structuring leveraged loan and high yield bond deals.

Shruti graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Duke University with a major in Global Value Chains and a Certificate in Decision Sciences. At Duke, Shruti self-designed a major to study the impact of design and technology on economic markets through a Global Value Chain lens. She served as the Global Value Chain lead on a heavy-duty trucking employment project for the Federal Appalachian Regional Commission and traveled to Lima, Peru to assist an engineering team implement a newly invented cervical cancer screening device.

Shruti is also the host and producer of the podcast, “Counting on Capital” which dives deeper into the world of private capital investing and features prominent guests in the space.

Ali Gleason

Operations

Ali Gleason

An administrative operator with years of experience in data management and project coordination, supporting top executives in the tech industry.

"Founders are innovative thinkers and leaders. As they are scaling, I love to be in the seat to help build and actualize their dream by managing the details that matter most."

Ali is a seasoned administrative professional with experience as an executive assistant, office operations manager, and event specialist for the past 10+ years in the fields of government affairs, communications, and technology. Ali is an expert in project coordination and data management.

Prior to Construct, Ali worked as an Executive Assistant Business Partner at Uber where she spent 6 years working directly for members of Uber’s Executive Leadership Team. She began her career at Uber focused on culture and team retention which she grew into a role working directly with the Head of Operations for the US & Canada. She handled all administrative tasks and planned and executed leadership and company events and summits. While at Uber she also assisted several other teams including Micro Mobility, Internal Audit, and Global Strategic Finance.

Prior to Uber, Ali worked as an EA to the CEO of the Glover Park Group in Washington, DC, an EA at Netflix in their Content Operations and Media Engineering department in Los Angeles, CA, an EA to the COO of Worldwide Studios at Activision Blizzard in Santa Monica, CA and a legislative assistant and event coordinator at Mehlman Vogel Castagnetti, a bi-partisan lobbying firm in Washington, DC.

Ali holds a BA in Communications and Human Resources from James Madison University. She lives in Northern Virginia with her husband and 2 daughters.

Contact

Reach out if you are a founder transforming a foundational industry.