Edith epitomises everything that is right about today’s leaders. She’s sharp, attentive, yet undeniably warm. Just last year, Edith took on her biggest role yet – She was appointed head of 500 Startups China division, replacing previous boss Rui Ma and forcing her to equally divide her time between China and San Francisco.
Yet this powerhouse of a leader sees no problem with the incalculable flying and hotels: “Theres always somebody that you will be responsible for, and I particularly enjoy helping the Chinese people. People in the USA are really good at story telling. Asians in general are a little more shy and humble. We are not proud enough to talk about our own stories. But that’s exactly what we need to be doing.”
Edith who was previously a GM at Dolphin Browser, a Sequoia-backed mobile browser with over 150 million installs worldwide, has also worked with many Fortune 500 companies such as Siebel, AMS, AT&T Wireless and Autodesk. Today, in spite of the extremely busy schedule of being a partner at 500 Startups, Edith is still going strong not only in investing in high potential startups but also seeking out investments that would create positive impact onto the world and future.
500 Startups, the organization which Edith heads, is a venture capital firm on a mission to discover and back the world’s most talented entrepreneurs, help them create successful companies at scale, and build thriving global ecosystems. They’re one of the most active seed stage venture capital firms in the world. If you’re unfamiliar with what ‘seed funding’ is, it’s simply the initial bout of capital – this came on in the form of cash, resources, or network opportunities – that is provided to a startup to propel them forward. Since their inception in Silicon Valley, 500 Startups has invested in over 2,000 companies via their 4 global funds and 14 microfunds dedicated to either specific geographic markets or verticals. The organizations 100+ team members are located in multiple locations worldwide, with 500 Startups’ global portfolio of investments spanning over 60 countries.
“The biggest challenge facing young entrepreneurs today is that they’re too afraid. Once you get over it, you have to learn how to sell. You must be able to sell your team to potential investors. Having the emotional intelligence and just being intelligent are two different things. To be a really good CEO, you need to have empathy to understand why people do certain things,” she quips emphatically.
Not only is she one of Silicon Valley’s must-know venture capitalist today, Edith is also the chief editor at Silicon.news and China Internet Report’s creator, where she publishes an annual report on China technology trends widely popular among investors and corporate executives. To find out more on her, head over to her website at http://www.edith.co.