Meet Esha Vatsa, Senior Investor at Forward.

September 13, 2022

Forward invests in high-growth companies at early stages. Investing early not only means great deals on equity, it means we can roll up our sleeves and get involved right from the start, supporting businesses to build strong foundations for growth.

We specialise in pre-seed and seed stage investments within the marketplace, applied AI and Web3 sectors, backing teams and products with promise and momentum. We also provide support right from the start of our investment. This is achieved through our dedicated Studio team who help founders on the ground with expert execution and our investors who support at board level, through strategic advice. 

Our investment team are the engine room at Forward. They uncover outstanding founder talent, deep dive into new trends, analyse the growth potential of the companies we meet and build long-lasting relationships with the founders in our portfolio. In this article, you’ll meet Esha, our Senior Investor. 

Where were you before joining Forward?

Prior to joining Forward Partners, I was a Principal at Pi Labs and covered the firm's investments across the PropTech sector, where I led several investments including in FinTech, LegalTech and ConTech. Before that, I spent time at a seed stage impact investment firm in India, focussing on FinTech and Healthcare sectors, and advised on M&A transactions for longer than I’d care to admit! I hold a degree in Business Studies from Delhi University and an MBA from London Business School.

What made you want to work at Forward?

As an early-stage investor, you spend most of your time speaking to founders and working with them post-investment.  Forward has a standout reputation for how it works with founders pre-investment and partners with them after investing.  This stood out to me and I was eager to join a firm that truly shares that value.

What technology sectors are exciting to you right now?

Sales Enablement especially for large enterprises is a space that is mind-bogglingly still dominated by pdfs and presentations.  Start-ups building in this space are hugely exciting primarily because it is white space and prospective customers (i.e. sales teams) that have budgets for great products. 

What do you think makes a stand-out founder?

Personally, a founder/team that knows the problem they are solving or the industry they are operating in a great level of detail, stands out to me. Over the past 4 months, it has been amazing to speak to a few founders that uncovered useful insights about a different topic every time I have spoken to them.  After several such conversations, it is hard to forget such a founder/ team, whether I invest in them or not.     

Do you have any advice for founders looking to secure funding from Forward?

Forward welcomes founders to approach us through any channel - warm intro, or cold reach out are treated alike. 

When reaching do share a pitch deck that clearly covers - problem, product, team, market, and fundraising.  We aim to respond to all founders who reach out to us and a clear pitch deck helps to get to a conclusion on the next steps much easier and faster.   

Who's making waves in the Forward portfolio?

Apexx is building a payments orchestration platform and have recently signed large clients across the retail and travel sectors, most recently signing with Ryanair to boost conversion rates and lower global transaction costs.

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September 13, 2022