This week we're excited to be joined by Jacob Claerhout, Associate at Partech Ventures and founder of Merit, the 'Codeacademy for VCs'! Like us, Jacob feels strongly about broadening access to venture capital which is why he started Merit; to give anyone the opportunity to earn their stripes assessing early stage companies. We discuss how building something gives you a renewed respect for all founders, and how it's taking Jacob back to his background in engineering! Finally, as someone who's thought a lot about recruitment in VC, he shares his top tips for interviewing.
Paul Lehair, Investment Manager at AlbionVC, joins us this week to share his brilliant story - not only did he have the pleasure of meeting Petra back when they both worked at Viagogo, but he was also one of the first business hires at Citymapper! We discuss how Paul went from studying Politics & Economics across three countries, to an M&A role at Citi, before he moved over to startups. Find out how his experience across these varied companies informs his approach to investing in B2B software companies for Albion.
We're joined by Kate and Jessica, Associates in the Investment Team at 500 Startups who took pretty different paths to get there! We talk about how each of them is motivated by getting hands-on to support companies' growth, and what makes the fund's platform model special.
What do politics and VC have in common? We find out this week as Francesca and Petra sit down with Magda Lukaszewicz at Balderton (fun fact: she was one of the youngest politicians in Sweden ever)! Magda takes us on her journey from politician to start-ups, investment banking to venture capital. She talks about what she's seen and learned along the way and explains why keeping an open mind is so important in an investing role.
In a first for Associated, we're joined by two guests this week! Kathy and Michael are both Principals at Downing Ventures where, although they tend to look at different types of companies, they work together closely. We talk about the benefits of friendship in working relationships - how real trust enables respectful challenge and leads to more comprehensive deal assessment. Kathy and Michael also discuss how they found the learning curve in VC, the journey from Associate to Principal, and they share tips on preparing for that VC interview!
We're absolutely thrilled to be joined by Will Bricker, Associate at Hustle Fund, to kick off our third season of Associated! Happily, the concept of "hustle" really permeates the episode; from the way we got Will onto the podcast (an opportune Twitter exchange about how Associates can enable more efficient investments) to the way Will worked himself into his role (a masterclass in negotiating a shot by offering relevant value). We also discuss Will's work on venture systemisation; the theories behind it, biggest challenges, and ways to make the venture processes more efficient and scalable.
To close out our second season we’re introducing a new member of the Associated team! Julia’s been working with us behind the scenes and is making her ‘on-mic’ debut with this special episode that sees us reflect on the last two seasons of Associated. This time, Julia’s asking the questions! We talk about why we started Associated, whether we're meeting our own expectations, what we’re proudest of and what we’re planning next.
Resources from our episodes
This week we're joined by Deepka Rana, Associate at Northzone, to discuss early stage investing across Europe and the United States. We chat about the joy of B2B products that delight the end user, ponder the immediate and longer term affects of coronavirus on VC, and reveal why it's always a good time to approach a fund you'd like to work at.
In this episode of Associated, Bastian Faulhaber chats to Petra and Francesca about his role as Venture Architect at BCG Digital Ventures- the corporate investment firm and incubator of the Boston Consulting Group. He explains what he had to learn as he transitioned from an investing role to BCG DV, how start-ups are put together and grown in-house- plus, the exciting projects he's worked on across a ton of different industries.
Sarah Guemouri, Senior Associate at Atomico, joins us this week to chat about what it's like to focus on research and insights for one of Europe's top funds. We discuss building a data strategy at a VC fund, how data-driven roles support the investment process, and how Sarah and her team pull together the annual State of European Tech report.
The State of European Tech Report 2019
In this episode Alise MacFayden joins Francesca and Lois to chat about her unique role as a financial analyst at Relay Ventures. They discuss how Alise went from Commerce degree to VC, then get nerdy and delve into how she uses her expertise to undertake due diligence, valuations and financial forecasting!
Francesca and Petra chat to Seb Wallace at Triple Point this week! Seb talks about how the fund has adapted to the coronavirus crisis and how he is dealing with working from home-plus, we chat about his legal background and how it's equipped him at his job.
We're joined by Adam Reeve, Senior Investor Manager at Seedrs, this week to discuss what it's like working for one of the most intriguing brands in venture capital. If you only know Seedrs as a crowdfunding website, you'll be amazed listening to Adam talk us through the multifaceted structure of the organisation! We also discuss how Adam found himself in VC, and what he thinks founders should focus on while raising at this tricky time.
For this episode Lois and Petra have the pleasure of chatting to Keji Mustapha, Head of Network and Operations at Connect Ventures. They discuss Keji's journey into VC, her role in connecting the fund's community, and the importance of sharing best practice to accelerate learning. Then Keji flips the script and asks what we wish we'd known before getting into VC.
This week we go international, speaking to Edel Coen from Draper Esprit in Ireland, with the Associated team split across the UK and Thailand. Edel talks about her experience on the operating side and investor side, and how getting board experience early in her career has impacted her. Plus, she lets us know what it’s like to work as a young investor in the Valley.
Once again we're recording remotely, and this time we're thrilled to be joined by Nick Sando of Octopus Ventures (and, briefly, his cat). Before he joined Octopus to invest in the Future of Money, Nick was a founder himself - we discuss the highs and lows of entrepreneurial life, and how those experiences inform his approach to investing and supporting portfolio companies.
Kicking off Season 2 we've got Bethany Greer, Associate at Bethnal Green Ventures. For the first time on Associated we're recording remotely because of the global situation with COVID-19, but it hasn't stopped us! We get into how social distancing measures might impact the future of work, which is an area Bethany's fund looks at as part of their remit investing in early stage tech for good. And we talk about Bethany's unconventional path to VC - including a cool little thing she did post-interview that she believes secured her the role at BGV!
Bethnal Green Ventures
Petra and Lois sit down with Abi Mohamed, one of the busiest ladies in the business. She wears so many hats - founder, scout, developer, programme manager - it's a miracle she found the time to chat! They discuss Abi's role at TechNation, her experience of angel investing and scouting for VC funds, and some of the reasons women are still less likely to pursue a career as a developer.
Abi's on Twitter @abii_mohamed
Community Growth Ventures
This week we’re joined by Sarah Nöckel, the founder of Femstreet and investor at Dawn Capital! We find out more about what goes on behind the scenes at one of Europe’s largest VC funds focusing on investments into B2B software and fintech, how to carve out a niche for yourself in the industry and discuss the classic question: what’s harder- being a VC or a founder? PS. Check out Femstreet here: https://www.femstreet.com/
What does it take to work at Seedcamp - one of the most influential early stage funds? Kyran Schmidt fills us in: on how he went from intern to associate, the foremost qualities Seedcamp looks for in founders, and current areas of interest for the fund.
In this episode Lois and Francesca chat to Hasan Sukkar about his work in venture capital and entrepreneurship. From dorm room founder to assessing space tech at Seraphim Capital, then interning through one of London's most talked about programmes, Included VC - Hasan's been around the block! He's now settling into the New Entrepreneurs Foundation and sharing what he's learned from working on both sides of the fence.
It's Christmas Eve and we have a special episode for you today! The holidays are a great time to unplug and catch up on your reading, so we've recorded an episode talking about literary works that have inspired us as well as what we're reading at the moment. Happy Holidays, we'll see you in 2020!
Petra and Francesca spend some time with Dele Akinyemi on this episode; Dele is an Associate for MMC Ventures, a fund investing in early stage UK start-ups. From East London to Indonesia, Dele has quite literally crossed the globe in his career so far and lets us in on how all the different pieces – medicine, consulting, start-up operations - fit together.
On this episode, Petra and Francesca sit down with Freddie Evans, Associate at Augmentum Fintech. Freddie explains how Augmentum’s unique public structure sets them apart in the venture landscape and how it benefits entrepreneurs; he also delves into characteristics he thinks make a great investor, explains what the first day in VC is really like and what habits he had to unlearn while transitioning into venture from consulting.
Lois and Francesca chat with Eva Rez, Senior Investment Manager at Sky Ventures. They discuss how corporate venture differs from institutional VC (Eva has experience of both!) and delve into some of the partnerships she's facilitated at Sky. Eva also talks about her route into the investment industry, and how she studied venture capital in San Francisco.
Lois and Francesca chat to Emma Steele, Investment Manager at Fair by Design. They discuss Emma's career trajectory, the remit of the Fair by Design Fund, and how impact investing works.
Fair By Design
Francesca and Lois are joined by Andy Davis, Venture Partner at Backstage Capital. They discuss the companies he's founded, how he advises the next generation of entrepreneurs, his favourite movie star and the importance of product validation.
Francesca, Lois and Petra introduce their new podcast and discuss how they're aiming to broaden access to venture capital. Get involved in the community on Twitter (@associated_pod), Instagram (@associated_podcast) and via email (email@example.com)!
Francesca: LinkedIn, Twitter
Lois: LinkedIn, Twitter
Petra: LinkedIn, Twitter