Sasha Astafyeva (Atomico) – Growing a Real Estate Tech Company in Brazil, Series A Consumer Landscape in Europe, and How She Thinks About International Expansion

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Our guest today is Sasha Astafyeva, Partner at Atomico. Atomico invests in Europe’s most ambitious tech founders at Series A and beyond. Some of their investments include Farmdrop, Habito, and teatime games. Sasha leads new investments in consumer. Previously, she was a Principal at Felix Capital and VP of Finance and Business Intelligence at VivaReal.

A couple of books that inspired Sasha personally and professionally are The Cost of Living by Deborah Levy and Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal? by Jeanette Winterson.

You can also follow your host, Mike, on Twitter @mikegelb. You can also follow for episode announcements @consumervc.

Some of the questions that I ask Sasha are –

  1. What initially attracted you to venture capital?
  2. Talk to me about the European landscape when it comes to the startup ecosystem, what makes you excited about it?
  3. What’s your definition of Series A? How do you think about that stage?
    1. What are milestones that a startup has to achieve in order to raise a Series A?
    2. What are some qualities you like to see in founders?
  4. Since the United States is such a big market, you can create a massive business in the United States alone. I imagine it must be harder to scale in Europe since you’re dealing with many countries.
  5. What are some consumer trends that you are excited about?
  6. Has COVID changed some of your thesis’ around certain trends?
  7. Has it been harder establishing conviction amongst founders since you have to meet with them remotely?
  8. I recently had on Ezra Galston, who runs Starting Line, a VC fund out of Chicago. He mentioned that deals are getting done really quickly, almost at pre-COVID pace. Is this the same in Europe?
  9. What’s one thing that you would change about venture capital?
  10. What’s one company you had an opportunity to invest in, didn’t and in retrospect wish you did?
  11. What’s your most recent investment and what makes you excited about it?
  12. What’s one book that inspired you personally and one book that inspired you professionally?
  13. What’s one piece of advice that you have for B2C founders?

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