Sydney capital raising event: Meet our speaker panel The first of our Readiness Event Series kicks off in Sydney this June with a focus on capital raising and getting companies growth-ready. The event is aimed at enabling business leaders to achieve an always-on state of readiness – a must-have in the current disruptive climate. With the event just around the corner, here’s an introduction to the expert speakers who will be sharing their wisdom to help you better prepare for your next capital raise. Between them, their experience is nothing short of incredible. We can’t wait to welcome them. If you haven’t yet, you can register for our Sydney event here. Richard Kimber has 25 years of global leadership experience that includes several chief executive and board roles across financial services, marketing, social media, and capital markets. Previously, Kimber was the first Regional Managing Director of Google in Southeast Asia (including Australia and NZ). Kimber led the company’s commercial and country operations in the region and more than doubled its multibillion dollar revenue, as well as managing the local integration of the YouTube and DoubleClick acquisitions. Currently, Kimber is CEO and co-founder of Daisee, a rapidly growing Australian startup that builds Artificial Intelligence solutions for commercial problems. He puts a strong emphasis on the timing of investment rounds and believes that the planning of cashflow and leveraging of tax incentives are crucial. “For any business undergoing rapid growth, the main focus should be in the timing of expenses; and the subsequent planning of cash flow around the tax year end,” he said. “We’re still heavily focused on R&D and software development; so documenting our investment and getting all the paperwork ready is a key task.” Samantha Wong is a Partner at Blackbird Ventures, an Australian based VC fund with $500million under management. Blackbird specializes in backing Australians with huge ambition to build global businesses early, often the first cheque in; for the best, they aim to keep investing even into the growth stage rounds. Before joining Blackbird, Wong ran product and strategy at SurfStitch.com, one of the first big (and possibly the only global) e-commerce business in Australia, while also founding her own startup – a marketplace business called CapacityHQ. Over the past couple of years, Blackbird Ventures has emerged as one of the most fascinating investment houses in Australia. It is among a new wave of local venture capital funds seeking to back the nation’s brightest technology start-ups, helping fill a funding void that has arguably crippled innovation in this country for too long. “There is this profound sense that we are in an in-between zone,” said Wong. “We have had this great rush of SaaS [software-as-a-service], cloud and mobile. But we don’t know what is coming next.” Ben Williamson is Co-founder & CEO of dealPad, a company that helps investors find, manage and close financial deals. Williamson is an ex-KPMG and PWC advisor with vast experience in high-growth SMEs. Having raised and sold companies totalling more than $230million over the last 6 years, he built the dealPad platform as a way to improve the process of investor engagement. “I have the benefit of being able to spend a large portion of my day pondering the capital raise process; we like to think of ourselves as a mixture of match-making & process, so I get to compare it to other aspects of life too,” said Williamson. Linda Jenkinson is a serial entrepreneur who has built three multi-million technology-enabled services companies – all with successful exits. An experienced executive and strategist in global travel, hospitality, corporate loyalty, financial services and on-demand delivery, Linda’s career has spanned roles including partner in a global strategy consulting practice, founder and CEO of several startups, and director roles in the public, private and non-profit sectors. Linda is the first New Zealand woman to take a company public on the NASDAQ Exchange. She has received multiple awards for her entrepreneurial efforts in the United States and New Zealand and raised over $300million to date. “My father grew smaller businesses, but I was fascinated with how to build bigger businesses; I simply figured out how to build companies,” said Jenkinson. “I have a fundamental view of creating businesses that are win-win-win: for the business owners, for the employees and for the environment. My goal is to build 10 circular businesses with global impact from New Zealand.” Jenkinson believes that anything can be turned into a formula for success, including how to acquire companies or raise money. “I have a process I go through in my mind to figure out how to come up with the formula to solve the problem.” Register for our growth-ready event in Sydney on 21 June here.