FIRST PERSON: Sukhvinder Gill

The transition from derivatives trading to venture capital was quite an extraordinary journey for me. I thrived on the intraday volatility and the adrenaline rush that comes with trading; however, the strategic thinking and the long term vision required to build successful businesses as a VC investor pulled me in. Why did I do it?

1. Passion for Innovation: Being a visionary- working with RedCloud Technologies to raise their funding round has given me first-hand foray into the journey that founders endure in raising funds for a tech startup. Venture capital is a natural outlet for my strong interest in using technology and innovation to solve real-world problems.

2. Long-Term Investment: Derivative trading often involves short-term speculation and can be highly volatile. Venture capital, on the other hand, involves long-term strategic thinking. This aligns perfectly with the wealth of experience I have gained in my 30-year career.

3. Diversification: transitioning to venture capital allows me to diversify my investment portfolio. It has allowed me to spread my interest across a range of companies rather than being heavily reliant on one market or asset class.

Sukhvinder Gill

4. Desire for hands-on involvement: in venture capital you have the opportunity to work closely with your portfolio companies, providing strategic guidance and mentorship. I maintained a more hands-on role when building and running trading floors As an investor I am able to take this to the next level.

5. Aligning Personal Values: venture capital allows you to support and invest in companies that align with your personal values and interests. I am passionate about tech, and AI, particularly around the B2B and commerce space.

7. Potential for High Returns: venture capital has the potential for significant returns – if you believe in your ability to identify and build on winning ideas and companies.

The Big Apple

I am choosing New York City to set up my investment firm (think of it as VC reinvented) for several reasons:

1. Access to a Diverse Ecosystem: New York City is a global business hub with a diverse and thriving ecosystem that includes finance, media, technology, healthcare, fashion, and more. This diversity allows access to a wide range of industries, talent, and capital.

2. Strong Financial Sector: New York City is the world’s financial capital, with a concentration of investment banks, private equity firms, and hedge funds, allowing for strategic partnerships and capital raising.

4. Media and Advertising Expertise: New York knows how to use the media and advertising which are crucial for many tech startups.

5. Diverse Talent Pool: New York’s population is incredibly diverse, making it easier for startups to find talent from various backgrounds and skill sets. This diversity can be a competitive advantage for startups looking to build teams with different perspectives and experiences.

6. Exit Opportunities: New York City provides access to a robust ecosystem of potential exit opportunities, including mergers and acquisitions (M&A) and initial public offerings (IPOs). The presence of major stock exchanges like the NYSE and NASDAQ facilitates access to public markets.

7. Quality of Life: New York City offers a high quality of life with diverse cultural amenities, a vibrant social scene, and a thriving arts and culture scene. This can be appealing to entrepreneurs and investors looking for an exciting and enriching environment.

The proverb “fortune favours the bold” has been a Northstar for me. The vision is clear.

(Sukhvinder Gill is an investor and venture capitalist)

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