I believe tech startups are like Formula 1 teams: an assembly of passionate builders iterating to improve performance on the track while creating a community of supporters off the track, with entrepreneurs as the principals putting together these fantastic teams. And just like Europe is home to the best Formula 1 teams, it is and will be the home for the best startups.
As an undergraduate in an engineering school, I was part of the motorsports team, building and racing cars. This experience underscored for me that creating an excellent product was not just an engineering feat. Instead, it required an interdisciplinary approach blending people, technology, design, and business elements, which led me to an early start in the cross functional field of product management. I began my professional journey as a Product Manager for a prominent payments application at a major bank in India. At the cusp of the payments revolution in India (now leading the world in real-time payments), I was part of a dynamic team developing an application designed to simplify payments. We competed with industry heavyweights like Google Pay and a then-startup, PhonePe, which was later acquired by Walmart. This experience gave me a firsthand view into the startup world, an intriguing space where technology was solving problems in innovative ways, far outpacing traditional banking systems from the perspective of a competing incumbent. Since then, I have immersed myself in the startup world, bringing new ideas to life as a product manager. I was the second product hire at Drip Capital (YCW15), a San Francisco-based Fintech startup backed by Sequoia and Accel. Later, I joined Razorpay (YCS15 & YC Top 10 company 2023), India's largest Fintech unicorn, where my product helped over 10 million businesses (including 50+ unicorns) process online payments. These roles provided me with a front-row seat to the challenges startups face and the opportunities they have to create impactful products. I have navigated some crazy scenarios, like facilitating $30 million USD in shrimp exports to managing crisis outages due to third-party downtimes. While I am passionate about great products, I firmly believe that a team's culture of craftsmanship is the core engine of product creation. Having experienced the scar tissue of numerous failed products, I am acutely aware of how the absence of product-market fit can lead even the best teams to a dead-end. I decided to step out of the operating role to delve into a breadth of groundbreaking shifts occurring in technology and markets today. My exploration, combined with my enthusiasm for the European tech ecosystem, led me to London Business School for an MBA. I feel at home at Moonfire, a unique blend of venture investors and engineers committed to enhancing the investment process and supporting founders. Their data-driven and thesis-oriented approach is particularly unique as we build and ship features to improve Venture Capital at the seed stage. Before Moonfire, I was with Concentric Capital, another early-stage seed investor. I am eager to contribute to the ecosystem, with a particular interest in Fintech and Gaming. I'm excited about the opportunity to further aid founders and operators in this role and am happy to help in any way that I can.