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CIBC Innovation Banking Podcast

On our #CIBCInnovationEconomy podcast series, hear from leaders, entrepreneurs, experts and venture capitalists about the changing dynamics of the North American innovation economy

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Thinking Outside the Box in Venture Capital with Angela Tran, General Partner at Version One Capital 

Photo-Angela Tran
Angela Tran

Episode Summary

Angela Tran didn’t set out to be a venture capitalist; she wanted to be an engineer. However, she's leveraged the skills she learned as an engineer to help build Version One Ventures with partner Boris Wertz, a venture capital firm that has invested in some of today's biggest start-ups. Angela uses her background to approach problems from a unique perspective to find and invest in companies in their very earliest stages. She looks for founders who are driven by problems they themselves have experienced- and who will stop at nothing to solve them.

Episode Notes

Open to Opportunities 
Angela's journey toward her current role involved embracing every opportunity that came her way. She never turned down meetings, believing that each encounter could lead to valuable connections. Angela emphasizes the significance of the people she has met along the way and the  pivotal role they have had in shaping her career. 

Know Your Mission 
Angela and Boris share a strong inclination toward mission-driven founders who strive to address immediate problems. d She observes that many founders tend to focus on macro trends and problems that lack the imperative for change. In the absence of reliable metrics during early-stage investments, Angela and Boris instead concentrate on assessing the potential impact a company can have on the world. They focus on  “who” and “why now” principles.

Think outside the box
When she first met Boris, Angela created a dataset to try to uncover what startups would be successful. While it didn’t work- Boris appreciated her out-of-the-box thinking.. When approached by entrepreneurs, Angela is drawn to individuals who exhibit that same determined drive to solve problems in innovative and captivating ways.

CIBC Innovation Banking is a trusted financial partner to entrepreneurs and investors. Get in touch with our team at cibc.com/innovationbanking.

Show Contributors: 

Angela Tran

Michael Hainsworth

Version One Capital


CIBC Innovation Banking