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R3’s Venture Development Program — where are we now?

December 14, 2020

By Lauren Feld, Venture Development Lead at R3


I joined R3 in March of this year to help build out the Venture Development program, an initiative aimed at supporting early-stage startups in the DLT space. My first day in the office was March 16th, the week the world entered into an unprecedented time. There was general uncertainty in the world, and more personally, I was unsure about what this would mean for my new team, and my ability to make an impact and add value as a new R3er. Now, sitting here several months later, I am genuinely impressed by how much has been accomplished, as an industry, as a team, and as an organization.

Having worked with R3 in various capacities over the years, having worked at the Deloitte Blockchain Lab building strategic projects on Corda, at ConsenSys Labs designing the structure and process for the 70+ companies in the Ethereum Venture Production Studio and even at the Barclays Accelerator Powered by Techstars where I worked with R3 mentors to advise fintech startups on go-to-market and fundraising strategy. Needless to say, I was excited to officially join R3 as a Venture Development Lead, working to help architect a scalable program to support founding teams along their growth journeys. I knew from experience about the caliber and execution power of the R3 team, but I’ve been blown away with the speed and efficiency our team has demonstrated in getting this program off the ground.

Along with my counterparts covering EMEA, APAC and LATAM, the Venture Development team set out to create a fully virtual and dynamic program to support hundreds of startups from across the globe. In a few short months, we created robust programming around blockchain and startup content, an international mentor and investor network, relationships with preferred service providers and negotiated rates with development partners and software vendors, and mostly importantly, a strong and collaborative online community for founders in the DLT space.

Today, we have ~175 companies actively building CorDapps in our Venture Development program. We have close to 200 experts in our mentor network, which includes scores of investors from around the world. Through our perks program, our community has access to up to $100,000 in AWS Credits, $2,000 in Airtable credit, up to 90% off Hubspot and 50% off Expensify, and $20,000 in transaction processing credit at Stripe. And, we’ve organized close to 200 events ranging from workshops and webinars to office hours. All from our kitchens, living rooms and basements!

Our team has proven to me that remote work is do-able when you have clear and direct leadership and a defined strategic objective. I’m proud of what we have accomplished but more importantly by the amazing feedback we’ve received from our startup community!

Stay tuned to hear more about what we’re doing, or subscribe here to our monthly Venture Insights newsletter to keep up with our community.

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