The path to partner – with Yvonne Bajela, LocalGlobe

Last month we held the second event in our ‘Women in VC’ breakfast series and were delighted to welcome Yvonne Bajela, Partner at LocalGlobe, for the morning.

From her early days in investment banking to a chance encounter with a venture capitalist on a plane journey in Ghana, to leading EMEA investments at Mitsui, Yvonne shared fascinating insights from her career. Yvonne recently joined LocalGlobe as a Partner, following a period investing in underrepresented founders at ImpactX.

Yvonne had plenty of great advice and learnings to share with the group, covering all things from angel investing to brand building to becoming a Partner. Here are some of our highlights:

Authenticity is key to building your personal brand

There are some incredible investors who shy away from brand-building, and get great referrals directly from founders. But in today’s world, there is also value to be gained from working on your personal brand.

The key, Yvonne says, is authenticity. You can’t just share content for the sake of it. You need to be intentional, and have real substance behind your actions. Otherwise, it’s just noise.

Yvonne also spoke about this theme with respect to how we show up at work. After receiving feedback early on in her career to be more aggressive, she tried a few different leadership styles. But none of them felt natural, prompting her to instead be completely true to herself. She concluded that ultimately, it’s about owning your identity, and finding the right teams who allow you to truly be yourself.

It’s about knowing who you are and what your superpowers are, and really just leveraging that. Owning that can take you very far in any environment. Everyone is different. You are who you are for a reason. Walk in that power.

Yvonne Bajela

Angel investing isn’t a solo sport

Yvonne is a seasoned angel investor and had great tips to share, including how to identify founders who are truly obsessive and committed to their idea, and how to build your network to source opportunities.

Notably, Yvonne stressed the importance of the relationships you have and the networks you build. A great way to start your journey as an angel investor is via syndicates - such as Odin - or even crowdfunding platforms. A lot of her dealflow as an angel also comes from fellow investors, accelerators, and taking steps to make herself accessible to founders seeking capital, whether that be at events, via social media, or otherwise.

At the end of the day, VC is a network-driven industry. But for it to work, those relationships have to be authentic, not simply transactional.

Time is precious - be intentional about how you use it

When it comes to her own success and path to partner, Yvonne credits being incredibly intentional with her time. It’s important to always set yourself targets, and think about what impact you want to create wherever you go.

In the world of VC, it’s easy to get swept up with socials and events every day. But these can be time-consuming, and don’t always yield the desired outcomes. So being intentional about your goals, and where you invest your time - not just your capital - is a key piece of advice for those embarking on the path to partner.

Huge thanks to Yvonne for coming along and sharing her insights. If you would like to join our next event, you can sign up below!

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