Gen Z Meets VC: TempoCap Analyst, Zara Ryan, Discusses Our Recent Event at the University of Oxford

2 December, 2021

They say it takes 10,000 hours of practice to become an expert in something, and with Gen-Z indulging in nine hours of screen time per day, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that young people are now often considered experts in consumer-facing apps and web-based technologies.

Many of the most exciting new apps target teens and young adults, who duly conduct efficient and rigorous tests of those that could be of interest, quickly abandoning those that do not meet their acquired taste for convenience, connectivity, and, most importantly, shareability with friends.

This generation is immersed in new technology daily, and therefore comprises some of the industry’s best critics. In fact, Gen Z was recently highlighted by Business Insider as ‘so good at trendspotting they could take over the VC industry’.

TempoCap’s investment in Depop is testament to the value of young people’s inputs: Managing Partner, Olav Ostin, discovered the app when his teenage children requested a debit card in order to buy and sell on the up-and-coming second-hand clothes platform. Three and a half years later, the company sold to Etsy for $1.625bn in the largest acquisition of a private venture-backed technology company in the UK since 2019, and resulting in a remarkable 11x cash-on-cash return for TempoCap.

TempoCap is therefore proud to promote the involvement of young people in an industry that has traditionally looked to its elders for wisdom and expertise.  Our event on 11th November 2021 at the University of Oxford was a brilliant opportunity for us to meet young people and hear their thoughts on the latest tech, while answering their questions about a career in VC or in start-ups. We listened to our audience of students’ views on where to invest next, at the same time giving them an opportunity to learn more about the venture capital industry and TempoCap’s role in European growth stage tech.

Our team loved hearing students’ perspectives on e-commerce, fintech, consumer tech, and healthtech spaces as well as learning about the extensive list of exciting ventures they are already involved in. Members of OXAI, OXWIB, Oxford Entrepreneurs, Oxford Venture Capital Network and Oxford Finance Society, all amongst the audience that day, provided a great diversity of views.

We believe that drawing upon the knowledge of young people with a range of interests, technical knowledge and backgrounds could well be key to understanding the next great opportunity or disruptive innovation.

Indeed, the team at TempoCap heard insights into some of the best (and worst) new apps on the market, while meeting some incredible future talent for the industry. The occasion marks the first of TempoCap’s university-based events and following its success we hope to meet many more ambitious entrepreneurial students like this in future. We encourage young people to reach out to TempoCap and look forward to meeting more of you soon!

This post was written by Zara Ryan, a recent Gen-Z university graduate who joined the TempoCap team in 2021 after an internship with the firm.



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