This is a profile image of Matt Banholzer

Matt Banholzer


Matt Banholzer


Helps companies achieve strategic growth and optimize resource allocation by pursuing transformative innovation

Matt is a dynamic leader at the forefront of McKinsey’s growth strategy and innovation projects within the Strategy & Corporate Finance Practice. Specializing in materials, agriculture, and industrial sectors, Matt is an expert at helping his clients craft and execute bold, pragmatic growth strategies. His track record includes successful collaboration with numerous clients, guiding them through the development of innovative ideas and ensuring tangible impact.

A seasoned strategist, Matt excels in helping executives build new businesses, launch innovation portfolios, and navigate growth transformations. When companies encounter operational and financial challenges, Matt works with them to assist with rapid and dramatic performance improvements.

At McKinsey, Matt actively contributes to shaping our expertise in growth, innovation, and transformation. His work involves enhancing performance through effective growth strategies, establishing new businesses and growth platforms, and implementing and scaling innovation concepts. Matt’s involvement extends to setting up accelerators, incubators, and other venture-style initiatives to unlock new sources of revenue and productivity while also installing rigorous transformation architecture to help leading institutions thrive.

Before joining McKinsey, Matt excelled in academic research in chemistry. Armed with a doctorate in materials chemistry, he has authored or contributed to more than a dozen published, peer-reviewed papers. His work has received numerous citations, reflecting his contributions to the field.

Examples of Matt’s recent client work include:

  • assisting in the launch of a new business unit with a chemicals and agriculture company, achieving sustained high double-digit growth and generating hundreds of millions in sales
  • guiding a leading agricultural company through a transformation to generate billions in incremental bottom-line impact across all major functional levers
  • crafting a bold growth strategy with a chemicals company, tripling its growth outlook
  • helping install a performance-driven innovation-delivery system with an agriculture and consumer-brands company, including launching an incubator, building a vibrant partnership ecosystem, and implementing novel funding models, resulting in a substantial self-funding pipeline
  • aiding in the development of an innovation road map, culture, and operating model for a leading chemicals company, an effort that involved setting up an integrated innovation and operational project portfolio, doubling organic growth rates
  • designing a product development strategy and tactical launch plan which included market prioritization, partnership strategy, capital expenditure, production planning, and commercialization steps in collaboration with a leading materials company
  • helping lead an end-to-end transformation program with an international chemicals company, resulting in a 30% reduction in capital expenditures by reorienting the portfolio towards growth projects through portfolio selection, project optimization, procurement, and organization redesign

Published work

How to reignite growth through adjacencies,” McKinsey & Company, December 2023

How innovative companies leverage tech to outperform,” McKinsey & Company, December 2023

Three essentials of successful corporate venture capital,” McKinsey & Company, November 2023

Innovative growers: A view from the top,” McKinsey Quarterly, November 2023

Courageous growth: Six strategies for continuous growth outperformance,” McKinsey & Company, October 2023

Companies with innovative cultures have a big edge with generative AI,” McKinsey & Company, August 2023

Innovation: Your solution for weathering uncertainty,” McKinsey & Company, January 2023

Business building: The path to resilience in uncertain times,” McKinsey & Company, December 2022

How to make investments in start-ups pay off,” McKinsey & Company, November 2022

How can CFOs rebrand themselves as innovation allies?,” McKinsey & Company, July 2022

In conversation: The CFO’s critical role in innovation,” McKinsey & Company, April 2022

How transformation offices help tech-enabled transformations succeed,” McKinsey & Company, February 2020

Building new businesses: How incumbents use their advantages to accelerate growth,” McKinsey & Company, December 2019

How industrial incumbents can create new businesses,” McKinsey & Company, November 2019

Nine practices for better capital-investment management,” McKinsey & Company, May 2017

Small equals big: Unlocking savings in small to midsize capital-project portfolios in chemicals,” McKinsey & Company, April 2016

Meeting the need for a new supply chain in chemicals,” McKinsey & Company, April 2014


Northwestern University
PhD, materials chemistry

Cornell University
BA, chemistry and chemical biology