I believe there are two types of investors - engineers and financiers - and the difference is an investor's focus on creating value or extracting value. I’ve been an engineer my entire life.
I believe fundamentally that innovation happens everywhere, and being early in emerging markets is winning formula. But, founders must have global perspective beyond their local ecosystem and recognize that investors, customers, partners and talent will require them to get on a plane.
I invest early and go deep on working to add value to companies. My operational expertise combined with board of directors role with high growth companies helps me deliver value to founders and accountability and oversight to my investment syndicate.
I can deliver the most value on customer acquisition, executive leadership, culture building and bringing my extensive network to bear for companies.
As CEO of Launch Pad, I run a network of workspaces and build relationships into growing startup markets around the US. Living in San Francisco, my viewpoint is that of an outsider inside Silicon Valley, so I don’t get caught in the echo chamber, but I do keep my finger on the pulse of innovation. My global perspective is unique, I was born in Nigeria, grew up in Kenya, have run a business in Russia for 15 years and travel the world extensively consulting on developing startup ecosystem in rising markets and meeting incredible entrepreneurs along the way. This allows me to build authentic relationships early with founders who want me to invest in deals that can get competitive to get into, allowing me to get access to that deal flow for investors in my syndicate.
For investors seeking exposure to the best founders in frontier markets - markets that are on the cusp of tremendous growth - my proprietary deal flow comes from extensive travel and boots on the ground work to find the best companies to invest in. I’m sector agnostic, but focus on companies that have a clear business model and path to revenue vs. ad based revenue models and capital intensive consumer internet companies.
I will syndicate all deals that the founders provide me with an allocation to syndicate.