Myriad Live 2017 with Kara Frederick, General Partner at Reinventure

LIVE with Kara Frederick, General Partner @Reinventure, about VC and investing in fintech and data

Posted by BeachCity on Thursday, March 30, 2017

Video Transcription:

Suzzanne: Hi everyone, again. I've got to say her name is Kara. We like to say Kara, but you like to say ...

Kara Frederick: It's Kara, it is.

Suzzanne: In America, you have another accent to it and I feel like Australians destroy your name a little but just because our accent.

Kara Frederick: Yes. Kara doesn't exist, it's Kara.

Suzzanne: See, it's actually Kara.

Kara Frederick: I have to translate between American and Australian.

Suzzanne: I feel like that's important because I'm finding there's a lot of Americans coming over to Australia right now. What brings you to Australia?

Kara Frederick: Originally I'm here because of my husband, he's Australian, but what I have noticed having been from Silicon Valley originally and been investing in Silicon Valley and in New York and now being in Australia for awhile. What I've noticed is Australia's really growing a lot. If you look at the investment community alone, that part of the startup ecosystem, the new money that's come into investing for startups and growth companies here has increased ten fold in the last two years.

Suzzanne: That's awesome! That means Australia is a global hub for new startups.

Kara Frederick: That's right, and Brisbane deserves to see a share of that. There's a lot of innovative companies here, and the reason I'm here is to look for companies we can invest in [inaudible 00:01:18].

Suzzanne: Is there a particular ... Everyone has their own favourite sectors. Do you have any particular ones that you like?

Kara Frederick: Yeah. Our focus is on financial services, but then also on data. Big data as well as the disruption that's coming off the back of that into tangential industries so what used to be fairly narrow in terms of Fintech now is actually quite broad. At this conference, in [inaudible 00:01:43] in particular and focusing on Queensland companies, what I'm seeing is a lot of companies that are doing interesting things with energy data, with residential or real estate data, and workflow data.

Suzzanne: Do you think, even though it's focused here, is it because of it's global kind of mindset that you could potentially implement these data technologies into other countries as well?

Kara Frederick: Yeah. I mean, the dream is to build something that works and is effective and there's client demand for and then to roll it out globally so it's relevant on a global scale. I think Brisbane companies and Queensland companies that I've spoken to at this event get that. They're creating businesses that can be globally relevant and that's what we're looking for.

Suzzanne: Awesome. What can an Australian startups learn from Silicon Valley that you think is lacking here?

Kara Frederick: Well, I guess there's a couple of things. One, every ecosystem is different. I think the first thing is to try to just be a [inaudible 00:02:37] is I don't think that's the right goal for Australia and I don't think that's the right goal for Queensland and Brisbane in particular. I think find what you're good at and use the current megacycle of disruption and technology to your advantage to apply that because probably some of the challenges you're seeing here and you're solving for can be globally relevant but they're not going to be exactly what Silicon Valley has seen historically. It's going to be the new wave of disruption and Brisbane has an equal share of being part of that.

Suzzanne: Awesome. What is your favourite beach? I have to ask. We're Beach City, you know.

Kara Frederick: It's funny because growing up in the San Francisco Bay area, even though it's coastal, I wouldn't say I spent a lot of time at the beach. It's cold. It's more looking through a window. I'm very pale. I actually think that Queensland has the best beaches.

Suzzanne: There you go. High five for that. Other than that, is there anything you're particularly excited about Australia that you want to focus on and like to elaborate and things like that?

Kara Frederick: I think it's really around the ecosystem. In order for a grow tech ecosystem to work, this is borrowing a little bit about how Silicon Valley has successfully grown over the last generation. Silicon Valley didn't exist a generation age, really. It created it's own ecosystem over a period of time that we see today because it's the compounded effect of multiple tech cycles. Entrepreneurs first at the heart of it, people who are willing to risk for new ideas with their own capital, their own sweat equity on the line to do that. Secondly, investors that are willing to back those entrepreneurs to create the next stage of the company. Thirdly, clients and markets that are relevant. What I'm seeing here is a tech wave that I don't think Australia's quite seen before.

Suzzanne: Excellent. That kind of makes me excited. One more thing, how can people connect with you? What can startups that are interested in data, Fintech, how can they connect with you?

Kara Frederick: We're looking to invest. Our handle is @Reinventure, you can contact me directly.

Suzzanne: I'll drop the link there so you can connect with her. Thank you so much for having the interview with me, so much.

Kara Frederick: Anytime, anytime. Thanks.

Suzzanne: Thank you so much.