This Much I Know is the popular podcast from Seedcamp, Europe’s seed fund

Dessi Bell, Founder at Zaggora, on turning hotpants into a multi-million dollar retail brand

From £25,000 of private savings, and over the course of a year-and-a-half, Zaggora was able to become a multi-million dollar sportswear company selling activewear to women. How did its founders navigate the journey of launching a clothing product in a market where consumers are often fickle and shifting fashion cycles reign?

On that topic, Seedcamp partner Carlos Espinal is joined by Zaggora co-founder, Dessi Bell, who before launching the brand with her husband Malcolm in 2011 worked as an investment banker at JPMorgan for five years. Prior to that, she cut her teeth and developed a taste for retail in her early 20s working at Ministry of Sound where she developed a fashion brand.

Dessi sheds light on the mysterious world of influencer market and discusses how it can be deployed to establish brand presence suggesting, 'when it really works is when there's an interesting partnership that goes beyond just a picture on Instagram. Meaningful brand partnerships that can be syndicated in press and other advertising will be a much more valuable resource.'

Pointing towards Zaggora's own early experiences leveraging the viral potential of Facebook groups, she emphasises how building an affirmative and inclusive brand was crucial for their success, with the company finding an identity in empowering women and letting them achieve their best.

Learn more about shifting cycles in retail technology, dealing with inventory & supply chains, and iterating quickly in the product development cycle.

Show notes: Carlos Medium: Seedcamp: Zaggora:

Related bio links: Carlos: / Dessi: /

Dan Glazer, Partner at WSGR, on stateside expansion for startups

What are the critical steps a European startup founder must make when plotting expansion to the United States? On that topic Seedcamp partner Carlos Espinal is joined by Dan Glazer, Partner at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati (WSGR) - the US law firm which has represented the likes of tech titans Apple and Netscape over the course of its illustrious history.

Dan recently co-led the WSGR team supporting UK-based technology company Improbable in its $502 million Series B round of venture financing led by SoftBank Group Corp - the largest-ever Series B investment in Europe and also the biggest venture financing round by a private British company in history. He leads the New York office's technology transactions practice, and is also a member of the firm’s US expansion practice, with a focus on advising UK and other non-US technology and growth companies on US expansion, fundraising, and strategic partnership transactions.

Discussing the 'different risk environment' for startups and established businesses in the US, Dan cautions that founders afford themselves '3 to 6 months preparation in advance' of setting up shop in America, 'because you don't want to find you've pushed the button go on your entire US business but you can't staff it appropriately'. He walks through the 10 key areas founders should focus on - from legal incorporation and immigration to HR, admin and government support.

Learn more about how American cultural differences can affect hiring, why Delaware is the 'Esperanto' of legal jurisdictions and the the difference in US and European legal environments for startups.

Show notes: Carlos Medium: Seedcamp: WSGR: US Expansion in 10 Steps:

Related bio links: Carlos: / Dan: /

The future of legal services with Legit Patents and JAG Shaw Baker

What does the advent of artificial intelligence spell for the future of legal services and lawyers themselves? On that topic Seedcamp partner Carlos Espinal is joined by founder and CEO Matt Osman of Legit Patents, the startup building AI-powered applications to automate parts of the R&D process, and Neil Miller, Partner at JAG Shaw Baker and formerly General Counsel at SoundCloud.

"The lawyer of the future is going to look much closer to a combination of a strategic advisor, an account manger, and someone in charge of customer support," suggests Matt, pointing to the recent phenomenon of law schools incorporating coding into their studies. "Quite a lot of their job will be interpreting and packaging the results that are produced by software."

Meanwhile Neil describes which aspects of the legal process will be automated first - including much of the grunt work currently performed by paralegals and associates. Yet he notes there are services which will be immune, including family law which 'requires a level of empathy you won't get with AI'.

Speaking about his experiences at JAG Shaw Baker and SoundCloud, Neil also provides a 101 on legal basics for startups and 'the things that become more complicated if you don't fix them early on,' from incorporation, cap tables and granting options, to keeping track of open source libraries and rights associated with them.

Show notes: Carlos Medium: Seedcamp: Legit Patents: JAG Shaw Baker:

Related bio links: Carlos: / Matt: / Neil:

John Lilly, Partner at Greylock, on 'product intentionality' and humility in venture

'The best founders are intentional around product,' says John Lilly, Partner at Greylock and former CEO at Mozilla. ‘It’s about how you understand user needs and be intentional about matching those needs, figuring out what people really truly need, and building the right thing for that.'

John joined Greylock as a partner in 2011, leading their investments in Dropbox, Tumblr and Instagram. Prior to Greylock, John was CEO of Mozilla - the organization behind Firefox, the open source Web browser used by more than 450 million people. John also co-founded Reactivity, an enterprise security infrastructure company acquired by Cisco in 2007, where he served as founding CEO and later CTO. Earlier in his career, John held positions on the executive team at Trilogy Software and as a Senior Scientist in Apple’s research labs.

Speaking to Seedcamp partner Carlos Espinal, John discusses the evolution of his views around product intentionality and the importance of putting users first. He discusses his transition from product, technology and operationally focused roles at Reactivity and Mozilla, to investment.

At the early stage, he argues, venture capital is about betting on founding leadership teams and vision. 'In consumer internet especially you just learn this profound humility because you just can’t figure out things a priori'.

Learn more about how Firefox was scaled from 3% to 25% of web browser users, why it is sensible to prioritise user needs, and why the position of COO will always be amorphous.

Show notes: Carlos Medium: Seedcamp: Greylock: Mozilla:

Related bio links: Carlos: / Robin: /

Mary Keane-Dawson on unlocking value through digital transformation

"Digital transformation is hard for big companies because they have encouraged 'Groupthink' and rewarded the wrong behaviour for years and years," warns digital maven, entrepreneur and business mentor Mary Keane-Dawson.

After c-suite roles at WPP, Steak, Reform and Collective, in 2013 Mary co-founded medical technology startup MyHealthPal as well as the women's networking franchise How She Made It - both of which started in London, but have since expanded to the US and Canada.

Mary started in advertising sales on Fleet Street in the late 80s, the dawn of desktop publishing, and she has been part of the digital revolution ever since. She has helped guide several of the world’s largest brands’ entry to the disruptive and evolving landscape of digital, including Mazda, Ford, John Lewis, BUPA, IBM, Nestle and British Gas. The first woman to Chair The Guardian Changing Advertising Summit, she is a speaker, writer, business mentor and coach. In April 2017 Mary stepped down as MD of Neo@Ogilvy and is starting a new agency leadership role in June.

Speaking to Seedcamp partner Carlos Espinal, Mary discusses her extraordinarily quick journey from ad sales to management, and the challenges she encountered on the way. "Rather than just being a sponge in the meeting and just nod my head sagely in agreement with the most senior person, I wasn't afraid to ask the question that was on everyone's mind," she explains of her early days.

Learn how 'another revolution' in marketing and advertising awaits us with the rise of AI and Machine Learning, how companies can unlock value through digital transformation, and why it only works when there's collegial buy-in.

Show notes: Carlos Medium: Seedcamp:

Related bio links: Carlos: / Mary: /

LocalGlobe’s Robin Klein on founder-market fit and the future of European venture

Robin Klein is one of the true pioneers of Europe’s venture scene: as cofounder of The Accelerator Group (TAG) in 1995, and an early stage investor in the likes of Transferwise,,, Love Film and Agent Provocateur, he has catalysed the success for some of London’s most impactful private businesses over the past two decades.

“We never forget that the company is owned by the founders and that we are part of the support team”, says South African-born Robin. General Partner at LocalGlobe, he was until 2015 a venture partner at Index Ventures. Prior to joining Index, Robin co-founded The Accelerator Group, with his son Saul. Before beginning his investment career in earnest he built and sold a number of businesses, the last of which was the Innovations Group. He sits on the board of several companies, and conducted the first documented e-commerce transaction in the UK in 1995.

Speaking to Seedcamp partner Carlos Espinal, Robin speaks optimistically about the future of European venture, but warns it still lags behind in IPOs and corporate M&A. “There is a lot of capital and a tremendously supportive ecosystem… but that capital will dry up or be unsuccessfully deployed if the volume of the exits doesn’t support the bottom of the pyramid,” he says.

He also emphasises for the importance of founder-market fit for LocalGlobe. “At the stage we invest the amount of due diligence you can do on the product, market and the metrics is relatively limited so I would like to spend much more time with our founders, because that’s where the heart of our decision-making lies.”

Learn more about the kinds of milestones LocalGlobe looks for in early-stage companies, the evolution of Europe’s ecosystem and the next industrial revolution.

Show notes: Carlos Medium: Seedcamp: LocalGlobe:

Related bio links: Carlos: / Robin: /

Eze Vidra, the 'godfather' of London's tech scene on building the capital's startup ecosystem

As the founder of Campus London, Google's first physical startup hub, Eze Vidra has a strong claim to being the ‘godfather’ of London’s current tech scene. Eze's journey has taken him from product management and leadership roles in startups across the globe to managing strategic partnerships for Google and founding multiple businesses, including VC Cafe and not-for profit TechBikers, the charitable initiative that brings the tech community together with a 320km bike ride from Paris to London.

Joining Seedcamp partner Carlos Espinal, Eze recalls the story of early days at Campus London and how it became the entrepreneurial hotbed it is today - with 3,600 jobs created and more than £128 million raised by Campus startups since launch five years ago.

Eze is currently Chief Innovation Officer at Antidote, a digital health startup matching the right patients with the right trials. Previously he was a general partner at Google Ventures and, prior to that, the European head of Google for Entrepreneurs, where he helped forge partnerships to strengthen the startup ecosystem. He also led Campus London, a collaborative environment for startups created by Google For Entrepreneurs. While at Google, Eze spearheaded strategic commerce partnerships in EMEA, and helped launch Google Shopping, Google Shopping Express, and Google Wallet.

Now in its sixth year, TechBikers, will take place 15-17 June 2017 with over 60 riders raising money for literacy charity Room to Read. You can donate here:

Show notes: Carlos Medium: Seedcamp: Campus London: Antidote:

Related bio links: Carlos: / Eze: /

Manoj Ramachandran & Pascal Zuta on transforming healthcare with AI

From virtual assistants to risk analytics, and drug discovery to imaging and diagnostics, artificial intelligence’s scope for transforming the healthcare industry is significant. But just how will the use of AI and Machine Learning techniques reshape how medicine is practised today?

Healthcare dominates other industrial applications of AI in terms of money invested and number of deals, with $1.8B having been raised across 270 deals in startups within the space since 2012 according to data from CB Insights. Regulatory attention has followed this cash torrent: just recently it was announced that the Google-acquired startup DeepMind’s data-sharing partnership with the NHS was under investigation.

To discuss AI’s use within healthcare, Carlos Espinal is joined by two Seedcamp-backed founders: Manoj Ramachandran, co-founder of, a startup working on deep learning algorithms to revolutionise imaging diagnostics; and Pascal Zuta, from the US-based GYANT, a digital health assistant and symptom checker.

Pascal discusses how using AI can help treat high frequency conditions, taking load off the system and letting medical professionals concentrate on more difficult and meaningful tasks. Meanwhile Manoj argues that the most difficult thing is ‘integrating it within a clinical workflow so that it augments the practice of a healthcare physician'.

Tune in to hear whether these founders believe an algorithm or robot can ever truly replace human interaction within the healthcare sector.

Show notes: Carlos Medium: Seedcamp: GYANT:

Related bio links: Carlos: / Manoj: / Pascal: /

Mike Butcher, TechCrunch Editor at Large, on batting for the entrepreneur in European journalism

The attitude of the British mainstream press when covering technology companies is often one of 'risk and scepticism', says TechCrunch Editor at Large Mike Butcher. But what if instead of predicting failure or projecting concern journalists took a more positive view of technology entrepreneurship?

Speaking to Seedcamp partner Carlos Espinal, Mike explains how TechCrunch’s policy is to ‘bat for the entrepreneur’, supporting and advocating for their success. He describes the process of taking this Silicon Valley-style approach to tech writing and injecting it into European journalism, including his early days as the ‘Arthur Dent of the tech writing world’ when such writing was almost exclusively focused on US companies.

Mike is Editor at Large of TechCrunch, the biggest breaking news site about the world’s hottest tech companies. He founded the The Europas Conference & Awards, the charity Techfugees and has been an advisor on startups to the British Prime Minister and the Mayor of London. He is also a co-founder at TechHub.

Tune in to hear more about how founders can best narrate and tell their story, the evolution of tech journalism in Europe, and some of the next big problems founders should concentrate their energies on.

Show notes: Carlos Medium: Seedcamp: TechCrunch:

Related bio links: Carlos: / Mike: /

Growth hacker Sean Ellis on expanding through experimentation

“If you don’t have experimentation across the full customer journey, you’re going to have a hard time growing any business,” says Sean Ellis, who coined the term ‘growth hacker’ in 2010 after using such techniques to ignite spectacular, low-cost growth for Dropbox, Eventbrite, LogMeIn and Lookout - each now worth billions of dollars.

Sean is an entrepreneur, investor and startup advisor. He founded and sold customer insights company Qualaroo, growing it to millions of dollars in recurring revenue with customers such as Uber, Starbucks and Amazon, and is the co-author of Hacking Growth, published in April 2017. He founded and runs, the number one online community built for growth hackers.

Speaking to Seedcamp partner Carlos Espinal, Sean demystifies the principles of growth hacking. He goes behind the scenes of the Silicon Valley giants famous for having deployed innovative, experimental and data-driven methods to drive growth, including Uber, Facebook, Airbnb and Dropbox, where he served as the company’s first marketer.

Sean discusses some of the actionable insights from his new book - including how startup founders can build growth teams, validate product decisions, discover the right ‘north star metric’ (such as drives taken in Uber’s case) to guide business decisions, and generate insights from data that spans the entire customer journey.

Show notes: Carlos Medium: Seedcamp:

Related bio links: Carlos: / Sean: /