We are excited to welcome Naureen Zahid as a new Director in the OpenOcean team, focusing on Investor Relations!
Naureen has extensive experience in alternative investments and private markets, having worked across Hedge Funds, Private Equity and Real Estate Investment Management. In addition, she previously co-founded a clean-tech startup, and worked as a Director within an AI and ML automation startup focusing on RegTech, bringing key insights to our team.
In her spare time, Naureen is a CrossFit enthusiast, and enjoys adventure travel, hiking and biking. She is also an animal lover, and has been rescuing pets over the past 20 years.
Before joining OpenOcean, you worked as a Principal at Earlybird and at The Horatius Fund, a global geopolitical Macro Fund. What has your experience taught you?
Having worked across liquid and illiquid markets, I have learnt that fully understanding macroeconomic factors is paramount to ensuring capital preservation and growth. The volatility we have seen in 2022 due to high inflation and increasing interest rates, has shown how much public markets can have knock-on effects on private markets, and subsequently their returns. VC funds and startups will need to navigate this environment. I’m excited to share the insights I have gleaned from my previous roles to support the OpenOcean team and our portfolio companies.
At OpenOcean, you will focus on fundraising efforts and working with LPs. How do you see the current economic turmoil affecting VC's position as an investment class?
The European venture capital industry is a growing and now mature asset class, which is becoming an increasing part of institutional portfolio allocations. For some investors, venture capital just makes sense: VC has a long-term investment approach with exits over a 5-10 year horizon, allowing VC to be less exposed to short-term market fluctuations, and can provide insulation from extended suboptimal periods and macroeconomic cycles.
On top of this, VC-backed companies are nimble, and are the main source of cutting-edge innovation and increased productivity – two global trends that will never go away. Some of the most successful companies were founded during a downturn, including Slack, Uber and Mailchimp. I remain confident that VC, especially specialist funds like OpenOcean, will remain a lucrative investment opportunity for fund investors.
Reach out to Naureen at firstname.lastname@example.org – or connect on Linkedin.