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Tom Kelly (IDEO and Design for Ventures): We have a team of venture capitalists in the startup community in Japan all the time and we are always looking for things.

Tom Kelly (IDEO and Design for Ventures): We have a team of venture capitalists in the startup community in Japan all the time and we are always looking for things.

Tom Kelly is Partner at IDEO and Founder and Chairman at Design for Ventures (D4V). He joined IDEO in 1987. He is also is the best-selling author of Creative Confidence, The Art of Innovation, and The Ten Faces of Innovation. He is also Executive Fellow at the Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley and holds a similar role at the University of Tokyo. How it all started? How did you decide to enter the venture investment business? I’ve worked around venture capital almost my whole career – I live and work in Silicon Valley all my entire adult life. In the IDEO, we’re always working with startups that were venture-funded, that’s how I got to know some of the VC firms over the years. And it’s always looked like an interesting part of the equation that makes startups successful. When I started going to Japan I discovered that entrepreneurship […]

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Cindy Padnos (Illuminate Ventures): We tend to invest in teams and companies that are a little bit further along versus raw startup.

Cindy Padnos (Illuminate Ventures): We tend to invest in teams and companies that are a little bit further along versus raw startup.

Cindy Padnos is Founder and Managing Partner of Illuminate Ventures, an early stage Micro VC firm focused on Enterprise cloud and mobile software investments. Cindy has deployed over $100 million in venture funding to help dozens of start-ups reach successful outcomes including prior portfolio companies Red Aril (acquired by Hearst Corporation) and WildPockets (acquired by Autodesk). How it all started? How did you decide to enter the venture investment business? I had the opportunity to work with several other firms as a venture partner before deciding to launch my own firm, Illuminate Ventures. Prior to ventures capital, I had spent most of my career working in and starting software companies before I decided to go on the investing side of the table. My first experience working in venture capital was not one I had planned on: Shortly after the SaaS procurement software company that I had founded was acquired, I […]

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Cristian Dascalu (GapMinder VC): focus a lot on testing and validation before doing other actions. That will save a ton of time in the future

Cristian Dascalu (GapMinder VC): focus a lot on testing and validation before doing other actions. That will save a ton of time in the future

Cristian Dascalu is Partner at GapMinder VC fund. He actively investing & accelerating startups in Eastern Europe, digital innovation & tech startups expert. As an entrepreneur, Cristian co-founded a series of businesses and major projects aimed at the development of the tech startups and digital innovation areas such as GapMinder VC, ClujHUB, Techcelerator, Digital Transformers, TechFest, TEDxCluj, NASA Space Apps Challenge Romania and others. Starting in 2012 he launched ClujHUB, the second co-working space in Romania, being a key contributor to the regional startup community. With a Master in Economics (specialization Management & Marketing) and strong capabilities in sales, management and business development. Cristian is a creative thinker, strategist and passionate developer of communities in the innovation and digitalization areas. How it all started? How did you decide to enter the venture investment business? I have a business background, started in Cluj with the hub and coworking space to several […]

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David Blivin (Cottonwood): Our focus is the early founding stage of hard science-related companies – Materials, Robotics, Photonics, Energy.

David Blivin (Cottonwood): Our focus is the early founding stage of hard science-related companies – Materials, Robotics, Photonics, Energy.

David Blivin is Founder and Managing Director of Cottonwood Technology Fund I, II and their Euro Fund. He was also previously the Founder and Managing Director of Southeast Interactive, the first and largest information technology-focused fund based in the Southeast of the US. How it all started? How did you decide to enter the venture investment business? It happened over time. I was initially working at Montrose Capital, a merchant bank based in North Carolina’s Research Triangle Park. Merchant banking is more like leveraged buyouts, later stage, cashflow-positive companies. But because we’re based in Research Triangle Park, we were surrounded by a lot of innovation. It was back in the early 90s, with lots of entrepreneurs looking for capital and there were very few sources based in that region. So, even though we were a merchant bank, most of them did not understand the difference; they just knew we were […]

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Georgi Mitov (BrightCap Ventures): We look in the long run and make sure there is a win-win setup between the investors and founders

Georgi Mitov (BrightCap Ventures): We look in the long run and make sure there is a win-win setup between the investors and founders

Georgi brings extensive background both as a founder and an executive in large technology companies. Before establishing BrightCap, he was part of the leadership teams at two successful startups, Sciant and Aviaso, sold to two global technology leaders in those sectors, VMware and Honeywell, respectively. During the last few years, Georgi has been leading Honeywell’s aero business in Bulgaria and has been responsible for the product marketing of the fuel efficiency product used by over 35 airlines Lufthansa, Etihad, Turkish Airlines, British Airways. Georgi has been influential in supporting his companies in various roles – from product design and marketing to software development. Georgi graduated stomatology from Sofia Medical University but has dedicated his career to technology, taking up programming as a student in Sofia Math High School. How it all started? How did you decide to enter the venture investment business? I came from a software engineering background. My […]

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Tomer Michaeli (Viola FinTech): We understand that in order to build big companies you need to be patient, you have to wait, you have to persevere, and this is the DNA of our group

Tomer Michaeli (Viola FinTech): We understand that in order to build big companies you need to be patient, you have to wait, you have to persevere, and this is the DNA of our group

Tomer is a General Partner at Viola FinTech. He invests in Fintech, Insurtech, and Regtech companies and he serves on the boards of Planck (Israel), Inshur (US & EU), Tookitaki (Singapore), Omnius (Germany) and Easyknock (US). Prior to joining Viola, he was the co-founder and VP Operations at Fundbox, a leading global FinTech company in the credit and payments sector. Before co-founding Fundbox, Tomer served as a principal at Viola Ventures (formerly Carmel Ventures), where he spent 5 years building early-stage technology companies such as Wanova (acquired by VMWare), DesignArt (acquired by Qualcomm), LiveU (acquired by Francisco Partners), SundaySky and others. Before joining Viola, Tomer served in various technical and management positions for 10 years in an elite technology unit of the Israel Defense Forces. He earned his M. Eng. Cum Laude in Biomedical Engineering from the Technion, Israel’s Institute of Technology, his B.Sc. in Physics, Mathematics & Chemistry from […]

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Agate Freimane (Norrsken VC): We’re looking for impact tech startups that have a positive impact on people and/or the planet.

Agate Freimane (Norrsken VC): We’re looking for impact tech startups that have a positive impact on people and/or the planet.

Agate Freimane is General Partner at Norrsken VC. She was Investment Director at Norrsken Foundation, Head of Investment at BrickVest. She also worked at Morgan Stanley Alternative Investment Partner´s offices in London and New York focusing on investments in Europe and the United States, and in INvestment Banking at Citigroup. She was Founding Member of Top Tier Impact and Co-founder of Bright Mentors. How it all started? How did you decide to enter the venture investment business? I started my career in finance at Morgan Stanley investment banking and spent 6 years there, but I was always interested in startups and everything to do with it, so after Morgan Stanley, it was not a coincidence that I jumped on to the startup side and joined a fintech startup called BrickVest as one of their first employees. I saw first-hand what it takes to build and launch a tech startup and […]

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Thiago Rodrigues (The Craftory): We only invest in fast-moving customer goods.

Thiago Rodrigues (The Craftory): We only invest in fast-moving customer goods.

Thiago Rodriges is Senior Partner & Deal Crafter at The Craftory. He worked as Chief Executive Officer of Itaitinga Participações SA, Associate at AIG Capital Partners, Managing Director at GP Investments, Deputy Director at Caianda Participações SA, Director-Investor Relations at BRT Holding 1 SA, and Principal at Fogo de Chão Ltda. He was also a Champ of the Brazilian Fight Club.

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Peter Lasinger (capital300): I love what I do and I am really lucky to be in a spot where I could work with the most inspiring and ambitious people

Peter Lasinger (capital300): I love what I do and I am really lucky to be in a spot where I could work with the most inspiring and ambitious people

Peter is a venture capital investor and adviser to boards. He is a co-founder and general partner of capital300 a leading venture capital fund. Before that Peter has been an investment professional for a EUR 70 million seed fund and has been a manager at Accenture’s IT strategy and M&A practice. He holds a Ph.D. in IT and business administration, has founded a SaaS company and lecture at universities. If you are looking for an investment and interested in partnering with capital3000, the best and most efficient way is to submit your pitch via https://www.capital300.com. You will get feedback as fast as possible. How it all started? How did you decide to enter the venture investment business? I have to go a little back with that. Of course, we are a team, but everybody has a different experience. It’s important to understand where we come from and what we want […]

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David Millar (TechX Accelerator of The Oil & Gas Technology Centre ): We are focused purely on new technologies for the UK oil and gas sector

David Millar (TechX Accelerator of The Oil & Gas Technology Centre ): We are focused purely on new technologies for the UK oil and gas sector

David Millar is TechX Accelerator of The Oil & Gas Technology Centre. He brings over 15 years’ experience across start-ups, operators and service companies such as ABB, Shell, BP, ENI and Wood, developing and delivering organizational learning, improvement and technology innovation programs with great success. He joined TOGTC in 2017 from Wood where he held several senior operational contract roles, was awarded their Global Innovation Core Value Award in 2016 and set up and the company’s global ‘Innovation for Growth function’ which pioneered their digital-focused eWorking program. A few starting words about your fund First of all, TechX at Oil and Gas Technology Centre in Aberdeen has been running accelerator programs for just over 3 years. Now we’re starting our third cohort. We are relatively new as an organization and were set up and funded by the UK and Scottish governments. We are focused purely on new technologies for the […]

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