A few months ago I left DHTV, the venture capital firm where I'd been for seven years and I was conflicted about what to do next. On the one hand, I loved being a venture capitalist, both the highs and the lows - meeting lots of passionate entrepreneurs, difficult board meetings when a product or a hire isn't working out or a market isn't developing, playing with products in their embryonic stage and watching them develop, fighting to get into an investment I was passionate about, working on product and business strategy, and seeing lots of different industries transformed by technology. On the other hand, I had a craving for doing something more entrepreneurial - establishing a business focused on something I'm passionate about, working with co-founders who shared the same passion and vision, sleepless nights worrying about funding and lugging around office furniture from Ikea - all of it!
I advise entrepreneurs to start a business that builds a product in an area they love. After grappling with my conflict for a while, I realized I should take my own advice and do something entrepreneurial within venture capital. Luckily for me, Bill and Pietro were already doing exactly that and were looking to add a third partner to the team. As soon as we started discussing the possibility of me joining Connect Ventures, I knew I'd found what I was going to do next. Connect has all the characteristics of the venture capital firm I would design if it didn't already exist:
✓ focused on early-stage product-led Internet and mobile investments
✓ partners that are passionate about and engaged with technology
✓ a partnership with both investment and entrepreneurial operational experience
✓ lead investors that take an active role in the companies they invest in
✓ a single office and all partners work in the same city
✓ the fund runs on the same technologies it seeks to invest in and is always experimenting
✓ based in the vibrant heart of the east London tech scene
✓ committed to supporting tech ecosystems across Europe
So I’ve joined the team and it's all systems go! In between fundraising with potential LPs, portfolio work and internal fund management, I will be working on figuring out what kind of apps and services we'll use to run the business (please send suggestions!), developing our marketing and community, looking for larger office space (and building lots of empathy for homeless east London startups along the way)…and visiting Ikea. I will also be doing what I love most about being a VC - meeting awesome startups…so get in touch!