This month I’m excited to join the consumer fintech startup tickr, and since a few friends have been curious about the move, I thought it would be good to share a brief note on what got me here.
Technology Innovation and the Gains of the Future
My fascination with technology led me to venture capital. Here I got to see up close just how beneficial and disruptive technology can be, and how that trend is accelerating.
For instance, just this summer, I trained an AI model on legal text and almost immediately it could turn legalese into plain English. Moreover, despite being a mostly non-technical person I could wield this technology to do something no one thought was possible a few years ago.
Many advances are happening in other areas but somewhat worryingly, the capital gains of progress are more concentrated than ever. So much so that it isn’t hard to imagine a world where the wealth generated by innovation always accrues to a few, while the livelihoods of many become increasingly fragile.
Since that’s a world I don’t want to live in I wondered: what are the various ways you can help people become more invested in the gains of the future?
Climate Action and Planetary Wellbeing
I have to admit, I’ve been shamefully ignorant about the planetary risk future generations face because of our doing.
As a VC, I was tasked with finding companies that had hockey-stick growth potential. Yet as a citizen of the world, I’d paid little attention to the surest hockey stick of all: the dramatic rise in CO2 emissions and subsequent risk of extinction-level events.
To turn things around we’ll need massive policy and coordinated global action. However, I’m also confident that as individuals we can all do a little bit more to drive positive change, however small that may be.
The question for me here then became: given my skill set, what can I do?
Financial Innovation and Why I Joined tickr
Technology is inseparable from the financing that drives it. Meanwhile climate action cannot be effective without innovation across technology and finance. It is with these three interests in mind (tech, climate, and finance) that I decided to join tickr — a startup (and B-corp) that has developed an impact investment platform that’s accessible via a mobile app.
tickr is an impact-first company that makes it easy for first-time investors to save for their future while doing good. Through its app, consumers can benefit from the growth of businesses that positively impact the well-being of people and the planet.
I’ve joined as a Finance Developer, which is akin to a Finance Manager, but with scope to support the team in developing their financial infrastructure, product range, as well as international expansion.
Although my transition from VC will take some getting used to (and I plan to return to VC someday), I’m more than thrilled to join an exceptional team that’s helping bend the arc of finance to a more impactful future.