22 VCs you should meet at SaaStock
Meeting investors firmly interested in SaaS in the middle of all happenings at SaaStock is one of the most valuable aspects of the conference. We have close to 200 of them descending to Dublin on Septemeber 18-20.
If you are like Conor O'Loughlin from Glofox, who had 8 back to back investor meetings at SaaStock 16 and closed a €2-million funding round six months later, you have probably already started doing your homework to find who are the investors for your stage and vertical. In case you haven’t, we have outlined 22 VCs you should meet.
Before we get to them, make sure you grab a ticket ahead of the price increase on September 6th. Tickets and time are running out.
For the root placers. These investors put forth a smaller amount, less than $3M, to help put vital things in place: firmly establish product-market fit, develop a go-to-market strategy, see the initial traction that promises an engine of growth.
Christoph Janz, Point Nine Capital
Christoph co-founded Point Nine Capital in 2011 and has since grown the firm to be revered throughout the startup world. Point Nine is based in Berlin but invests all over the world. He went from two-time startup founder (both companies were acquired) to startup investor. He was the first investor in Zendesk and currently has $120M worth of assets under his management. His portfolio includes Geckoboard, ChartMogul, Contactually, FreeAgent, PersistIQ, Contentful, and countless others. Christoph maintains a powerhouse blog, the Angel VC. Hear him in person, in Dublin, over coffee in the morning of Day 2, when he is hosting “Coffee with Christoph” with a secret guest.
Tae Hea Nahm, Storm Ventures
Tae Hea is the co-founder and Managing Director of Storm Ventures, a firm that invests early stage with an eye to build enterprise leaders. Tae Hea has one of the most impressive CVs around. First of all, he was founding CEO for AireSpace, which Cisco bought for $450M. He was also the first or early investor for industry-leading enterprise startups such as Berkana, Echosign, and Marketo. These days he is interested in SaaS (specifically companies disrupting Go-To-Market), Security, and Artificial Intelligence. A look at Storm Venture’s portfolio will ring quite a few bells. To learn more about Tae Hea, check out his interview with the New York Times.
Deepka Rana, Sunstone Capital
Deepka is an Associate at Sunstone, an early-stage firm that invests across Europe, throughout the software stack, and in many verticals. They have grown since 2007 with the philosophy that the entrepreneur is their customer. Their portfolio companies include Prezi, Peakon, and Travelperk. Deepka, after years as an investment banking analyst at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, now works out of Sunstone’s Berlin office.
Marie-Hortense Varin, Partech Ventures
Marie-Hortense is a Paris-based Senior Associate at Partech Ventures, and previously a consultant at Bain, working in Go-To-Market and M&A strategy as well as private equity. Partech focuses on four intertwined sectors: Tech, Internet, SaaS, and Mobile. The firm invests on both sides of the Atlantic, from seed to growth stage. Some of their European portfolio companies include GetSafe, kantox, and Brandwatch. Marie met Conor from Glofox last year, which led to their seed round closing.
Dan Jones, Global Founders Capital
Dan is a Partner at Global Founders Capital (and an angel investor on the side). The firm manages a $1B fund, which they seek to invest around the world and at any stage of a company, from seed to Series A+. Some past investments include eBay, LinkedIn, and Facebook. Global Founders Capital describe themselves as a fund “by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs.” Indeed, before his years in venture capital, Dan was a Founder/CEO, building an online food ordering and delivery site that was ahead of its time in 2003.
For the leap takers. These investors are instrumental to a company’s first steps into scale. To receive this round of $3-12M, the business must have proven its ability in various areas: to attract and retain strong employees, to develop the product with speed, to acquire customers and expand those accounts.
Gloria Baeuerlein, Index Ventures
Gloria, a principal at Index Ventures, focuses on growth stage investments in Europe and Australia, with specific experience in software and fintech companies. Originally from Germany, she’s now based in London, and her background includes stints on other continents as well: time in Singapore for school and in New York for work. Index Ventures boasts many high-profile investments, such as Etsy, Slack, Deliveroo, Zendesk, and Intercom. In fact, eight of their portfolio companies have gone public in the last two years.
Nicola McClafferty, Draper Esprit
Nicola is the Investment Director at Draper Esprit, a Dublin-based VC firm focusing on Series A-plus investments in Ireland and abroad. While the majority of her experience is in venture capital, Nicola was also co-founder and CEO of an online retail business, Covetique, which was acquired by ASOS in 2015. This cross-over into entrepreneurship gives her special insight into startup life and informs her investment practice today. As a firm, Draper Esprit has seen $4B in exits since 2010. In the last year, the firm invested in 13 new companies, including Graphcore, Clue, and Podpoint.
Paul Morrissey, Battery Ventures
Paul sits on Forbes’ list of 30 Under 30 in European Finance. He started out his career with a BS in Economics from Stanford and a couple of years as a TMT (Technology, Media, and Telecom) analyst at Goldman Sachs. To date, as VP of Battery Ventures, he has invested $120M in Gainsight, Nitro, Intact, PrimeRevenue, and WebPT. After years managing the firm’s late-stage software deals in California, Paul is now based in London and focused on later-stage investments in Europe.
Alex Kayyal, Salesforce Ventures
Alex established Salesforce Ventures in Europe in 2015 and has led the $100M fund ever since. The fund is for European enterprise cloud startups, and so far has gone into companies such as Automile, Carto, DigitalGenius, Qubit, and RedKix. Before Salesforce Ventures, Alex established Hermes Growth Partners, a growth firm focused on enterprise SaaS and fintech companies. Before that Alex was an entrepreneur, founder, and CEO of TableZest. To learn from Alex’s experience, you can read his article on getting backed by Salesforce Ventures in Europe. Or just see him at SaaStock! He will participate in the panel, “Crossing $10M ARR: lessons learned, mistakes made. ”
Craig Netterfield (CFA), Columbia Lake Partners
Craig is a founding partner of Columbia Lake Partners, a venture debt firm that provides loans to European tech companies. From their headquarters in London, the firm takes a self-proclaimed light touch approach, “with no board seats, light covenants and standard reporting.” Before starting Columbia Lake, Craig was Partner at Wellington Financial, managing growth capital loans in Canada and the US.
Pia d’Iribarne, Accel Partners
Pia is another one of our Forbes 30 Under 30 in European Finance. At Accel, she focuses on consumer brands, marketplace, and SaaS and has helped lead investments in Doctolib, Selency, and Shift Technology. Though she currently works in Accel’s London office, Pia hails from Paris, where she spent four years as an associate at McKinsey & Company.
Evgenia Plotnikova, Atomico
Evgenia is our last Forbes 30 Under 30 superstar. She’s a Senior Associate at Atomico, one of Europe’s largest VC firms, based in London. There, she helps companies scale, specifically by focusing on the enterprise mobility stack. Prior to Atomico, Evgenia invested across many sectors at TPG Capital. She studied Finance & Strategy in Paris and recently wrote a great breakdown of the burgeoning French tech scene.
For the expanders. Series B demands confidence that the business operations and economics can continue to scale, and also that there remains a largely untapped market. Beyond simply scale, this round of $10-25M means full-throttle expansion.
Megumi Ikeda, Hearst Ventures
Megumi is the General Manager of Hearst Ventures Europe. Hearst Ventures is a corporate venture firm that focuses on the intersection of media and technology. For instance, Megumi sits on the board of Signal Media. Other portfolio companies of Hearst Ventures include HootSuite, Buzzfeed, and MobiTV. Megumi has had one foot in the media world for some time. Before Hearst, she ran the European arm of Peacock Equity Fund, GE Capital, and NBCUniversal’s $250M venture fund. And earlier on, she was an international business manager at Wired magazine.
Lucile Cornet, Eight Roads
Vice President at Eight Roads, Lucile works in venture and growth equity investments from the London office. While the firm also has teams in China, India, Japan, and the US, Lucile remains devoted to the European tech scene, convinced it would bear the world’s next global tech leaders. Eight Roads is currently investing a £150M fund in enterprise, consumer, and financial technology, with portfolio companies such as GoodData and Compte-Nickel. Lucile is particularly interested in next gen financial services.
Indy Guha, Bain Capital Ventures
As a Partner at Bain Capital Ventures, Indy focuses on growth-stage B2B SaaS companies, particularly those developing sales and marketing technologies. Some of his current and past investments include Optimizely, GainSight, Wrike, and Rapid7. Indy helped found the firm’s Bay Area office and resides in San Francisco today. Luckily we’ll have him in Dublin for SaaStock, where he’ll take the stage with a couple of others to talk about: “Lessons from fundraising applied to enterprise sales.”
Barbod Namini, Holtzbrinck Ventures
Barbod is a Principal at Holtzbrinck Ventures, a Munich-based VC firm that does investment from seed to late stage in Europe. Their main focus is consumer internet and its enablers, so it makes sense their portfolio contains names like Zalando, Quandoo, Flixbus, HelloFresh, and Delivery Hero. Barbod personally assisted in the firm’s investments in SpotCap, ZenMate, and LoopMe. Prior to Holtzbrinck, Barbod was investment manager at Rocket Internet, raising assets and evaluating the e-Commerce portfolio.
Nicolas Wittenborn, Insight Venture Partners
Nicolas is a Vice President at Insight Venture Partners, a growth-stage firm in New York City. He focuses on SaaS, consumer subscription, and marketplace businesses. His current investments at Insight include Series A or B rounds with GoSpotCheck, Harver, and OwnBackup. Previously he was in Berlin at Point Nine Capital, leading early stage investments across Europe and the North America.
Katie Kozuki, Google
Katie is the Director of Corporate Development at Google, driving much of the tech powerhouse’s worldwide growth. In this role, she focuses on Mergers & Acquisitions, business development strategy, and other investment opportunities. Prior to her ten years with Google, Katie was a consultant with Accenture and got her MBA from Harvard.
Joe Krancki, Frog Capital
Joe joined Frog in 2009 and became a Partner in 2015. He works closely with the Boards of Skimlinks and Mediatonic, and leads Frog’s collaboration with the London Business School on the TELL Series, serving as an Advisory Board Member since 2010. Frog invests in high growth scale-up stage tech companies in Europe, focusing on the consumer, financial and business services sectors. Prior to Frog, Joe was part of Jefferies’ Technology Investment Banking team, and previous to this, he was part of EY’s Consulting team implementing large projects in various US locations. Joe holds an MBA from London Business School and a BSc with Distinction and an MSc in Industrial Engineering from the University of Wisconsin – Madison.
At the point of Series C and beyond, investors could offer further capital or private equity. These rounds are usually in the tens (or hundreds) of millions of dollars, designed to multiply a predictable, smooth-running machine into a global industry leader...perhaps even a unicorn.
Britt Schuurs, Summit Partners
Britt focuses on the technology sector in Europe from her base in London. She’s an Associate at Summit Partners, which offers growth equity for later stage companies that have already seen a lot of success. The firm is currently investing a mind-boggling $8.8B fund and has portfolio companies on every continent (save Antartica). Prior to Summit Partners, Britt spent time at Goldman Sachs in Northern European M&A, focusing on the technology, media, and telecom sector.
Alex McCracken, Silicon Valley Bank
With over 20 years experience funding technology companies, Alex has a well-rounded background in both the VC and entrepreneurial side of startups. Currently, he’s the Managing Director of Silicon Valley Bank in London; he helped launch the bank in the UK. There he works closely with the venture capital community to offer financial services and debt solutions. Previously he was an investment manager at TTP Ventures. He’s also a former entrepreneur. In 2001 Alex co-founded TISS Ltd, developing security systems for commercial vehicles. He raised several rounds of funding before making a successful exit in 2007.
Muz Ashraf, Technology Crossover Ventures (TCV)
Muz has spent his venture capital career focused on internet, software, fintech and SaaS businesses. At TCV his current investments include Retail Merchant Services and The Pracuj Group. The firm boasts a $12.5B fund for venture capital and private equity. Prior to TCV, Muz was investing with Vector Capital in San Francisco or working on technology M&A for Merrill Lynch. With a background spanning from Dubai, Lahore, San Francisco, and now London, Muz has seen the technology world from many angles.
Have a look at all 200 VCs coming to SaaStock.