TempoCap engages with Oxford’s best and brightest

3 June, 2024

Access to knowledge has never been more vital. With students being drawn to AI-assisted software such as ChatGPT, which boasts the potential for writing academic essays from scratch, and social media platforms like TikTok promoting addictive, unverified content, it is harder than ever for young people today to separate fact from fiction and form an independent view.

As industry-leading investors in transformational technology businesses, TempoCap has long known the value of young people’s views, and our investment in Depop is testament to the power of their knowledge. Managing Partner Olav Ostin discovered the fashion resale app Depop when his teenage children requested his debit card details to buy and sell on the nascent platform. Four-and-a-half years later, the company sold to Etsy for $1.6bn in the largest acquisition of a private venture-backed technology company in the UK since 2019, producing an exceptional return for TempoCap.

TempoCap has since continued to engage with the younger generation, valuing their input as consumers and drivers of future technologies. Last month we met with the best and brightest at the University of Oxford to hear their thoughts on the latest technological developments, while answering their questions about careers in start-ups and venture capital.

Our team loved hearing students’ perspectives on AI, fintech and consumer tech, as well as learning about the extensive list of ventures they are already involved in. A range  of opinions came from members of OXAI, OXWIB, Oxford Entrepreneurs, Oxford Venture Capital Network, and Oxford Finance Society, who all provided views on where to invest next, while TempoCap explained our role in championing European growth-stage technologies.

Continuing our commitment to the development of future generations and engaging with their expertise, we were excited to launch our latest internship opportunity at Oxford. The hands-on, deeply engaging programme lasts six months, providing the chance for interns to involve themselves in the investment process, understand portfolio monitoring and learn the inner workings of a venture capital fund. The opportunity has been a great success to date, with both of the current TempoCap Analysts starting their careers at the company via an internship!

With young people’s knowledge and capacity for future innovation at such a premium, all of us at TempoCap are keen to keep engaging closely with students. Later this year, we will be speaking to students at the London School of Economics, as well as establishing a community page on Outverse to ensure continued dialogue.

Ultimately, we can harness new technology to drive change and accelerate growth – it is a strategy TempoCap has long employed successfully and we are enthusiastic about not only sharing our findings with future leaders, but learning from them too.

This post was written by Harrie Smith, an Oxford University graduate who joined the TempoCap team in 2023 after an internship.

TempoCap is a signatory to the United Nations-supported Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI).

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