20 VC 019: Funding the Future with James Wise of Balderton Capital


James Wise is Principal at Balderton Capital, one of Europe’s most successful venture funds. At Balderton, James invests and advises early-stage technology start-ups, holding board member positions at Crowdcube.com, Surnrise.am, 3Dhubs.com and many more… Prior to Balderton, James helped build one of the UK’s first social venture funds and was a consultant at McKinsey & Company, working with entrepreneurs in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Items Mentioned in Todays’s Show:

What you will learn in today’s show:

  • How James made his entry into the world of Venture Capital?
  • How does James feel the VC model differs in the UK compared to the US?
  • Does Silicon Valley deserve the plaudits it receives for producing revolutionary tech companies?
  • Following Balderton’s recent investment in Crowdcube.com, how does James believe crowd will become more involved in the future?
  • Is Crowdfunding not a competing method of financing to Venture Capital?
  • What is Balderton’s competitive advantage for winning deals?
  • What James believes makes the perfect Series A round?
  • Does James believe the mini-bond, introduced by Crowdcube.com have the potential to revolutionise funding for businesses?
  • Which sector James is most excited about and why?
  • When thinking of success who is the first person that comes to James’ mind and why?

We then move into a rapid fire round where we hear James’ thoughts on his latest investment and why he said yes? Does James experience a fear of missing out (FOMO) when passing on investments? Finally, James’ favourite book and why?


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