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100X.VC Team
Written by various collaborators within Team 100X.VC
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Oct 21, 2022
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India is at a pivotal stage in its existence with much to be built.

-Nilesh Balakrishnan, AVP, Waterbridge Venture

Team 100X interviewed some of the top investors across the globe about their venture investing journeys, startups, and India. Here, Nilesh Balakrishnan, AVP, Waterbridge Venture shares his responses.

Q1. What is your motivation to be in the venture investing business

I'm inspired by the idea that the art of life is to act as an enabler to bring out the best in people. I derive my energy from helping people express themselves to achieve their potential. Philosophically, the idea of early stage investing is appealing as it presents a front row seat to a version of the future

Q2. Describe your workday and leisure day, how does it look like

Workdays typically involve lots of reading/research and market knowledge expansion. 30% of my times goes towards new deals, 50% on existing portfolio and 20% on VC institution building. Leisure days are focused on two thing (a) sports - both playing and watching and (b) catching up on sleep 

Q3. What is your view on the future of India as a market

India is at a pivotal stage in its existence with much to be built, in many ways a blank canvas waiting for the right artist. With a domestic market that accounts for about a fifth of the global population and problems that are symptomatic of issues faced by most of the developing world, its such an exciting time to work closely with entrepreneurs on scale problems that can have an outsized impact on billions

Q4. How do you support your portfolio companies

Biggest value add has been (a) hiring top tier talent (b) setting strategic focus based on market feedback and (c) helping with further fundraise efforts through evangelisation/deck building/storytelling assistance 

Q5. When you started your career what were your ambitions

Wanted to become a product manager for YouTube at Google because I loved the product so much. Product Management was my sole focus but very quickly realized it was not a space that truly appealed. Over time realized the distribution (sales) side of fast growing startups was where I found my mojo.

First met the team during the launch event at IIT Bombay back in the day and I've always had such fantastic interactions with the 100x team. I truly believe the product you are building has started inspiring/improving the quality of teams in those earliest of funding stages - we see it in companies that come through your system. Ninad, Shashank and Sanjay are always such fantastic folks to interact with! 

More power to you 100X team!

About Nilesh :

Early stage investor with a focus on Enterprise SaaS, EdTech and Climate Tech sectors. I've experienced an array of operating roles in 3 startups across 4 geographies and have focused primarily on the sales & distribution side of fast growing SaaS businesses. I like to think of myself as a genuine operator VC and plan to be in the trade as long as I can useful

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