Payal Agrawal Divakarin was born in Winchester, Massachusetts and grew up in Waltham, Massachusetts. She has lived in these cities in order, Winchester, Bhopal (India), Waltham, Dracut, Cambridge, Mumbai (India), New York City, Boston, and San Francisco before moving back to Cambridge.  Her parents both live in Dracut with her mother Kusum Agrawal working as a tax examiner for the United States Treasury Department while her father works as a representative for MetLife. 
On May 27, 2012, Payal Agrawal Divakarin married her husband Dr. Sanjay Divakaran in a Hindu wedding at the Seaport World Trade Center in Boston. The couple met while they were both students at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). 
Payal grew up with a passion for sports and has always been a fan of Boston area sports teams including the Boston Red Sox and the New England Patriots. In high school, she worked as a Certified Soccer Referee. She also danced for a professional Bhangra (dance) team. 
Payal Agrawal Divakarin is a Mentor in the MIT Sandbox program and the MIT Community Catalyst Leadership Program. She is on the board of directors of the YMCA of Greater Boston and Adviory Board Member of SheStarts. Payal is a charter member of TiE Boston. She was previously on the board of Harvard/MIT COOP and South Asian Nation. 
Payal Agrawal Divakarin graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) with a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and minor in Management in 2008. While at MIT, Payal played for the school's varsity soccer team. She was also a member of the Council of the Arts at MIT, an Educational Counselor, an Externship Program Host, and a Special Projects Volunteer with the MIT Office of Global Initiatives.  
Payal Agrawal Divakarin has worked as a Principal at .406 Ventures in Boston since June, 2015. Payal serves on the board of Trilio Data, Event Farm, and has invested in Annum. She is also a Board of Directors Observer for WelbeHealth, Nomad Health, CloudHealth Technologies, Redox Engine, Axial Healthcare and Jisto.
Prior to joining .406, Payal was at Harvard Business School, where she co-founded a company called SpotRocket to help students discover high potential startups to work for. The company’s proprietary algorithm ranked 20,000+ global startups and provided the ability to slice and dice the data based on students’ interests. The company participated in the Rock Center Accelerator program.  For a year and a half, she got the experience of a founder - created a product, pitched for funding, went through an accelerator program, sold to customers, iterated and pivoted, went through acquisition discussions, and ultimately wound down the company given a tough monetization segment and other market challenges. 
Prior to SpotRocket, an also while in business school, Payal spent time in Corporate Development at Eventbrite. She helped the company to develop an Mergers and Acquisitions strategy and to navigate important foundational pieces such as creating a market landscape, housing competitive intel and setting processes for due diligence. 
Prior to HBS, Payal was an Associate at Spectrum Equity, a technology growth equity investor in Boston with $5.7B under management. She sourced and executed on deals in the software, information services, data/analytics, security and internet spaces. She sourced the firm’s first investment in online gaming in a business called Jagex, based in the UK, which was acquired by Shanghai Hongtou Network Technology. 
Payal started her career pursuing Investment banking at J.P. Morgan in NYC at the height of the financial crisis. She spent most of her time in the software and financial technology spaces, and was an analyst on Xerox’s $8.3B acquisition of ACS, Visa's $2.0B acquisition of CyberSource, and VisaNet Brazil's $3.7B IPO.