Venetia Kontogouris, Managing Director, Trident Capital
“Trident Capital and Venetia Kontogouris seek entrepreneurs in India for investment”
Venetia Kontogouris has been with Trident Capital since 1995. For the unacquainted Trident Capital has over US$ 1.6 billion of capital under management, including US$ 400 million in its most recent fund. Trident is a focus investor on health care, information services, Internet and Cleantech since 1993. It not only invests in initial venture capital investing but invests in micro-cap public companies, buyouts and consolidation.
Trident is a big player in the venture investor segment and Venetia has the background and the skills to be leading Trident. Before she joined Trident Capital as a Managing Director, Venetia was an executive Dun & Bradstreet Corporation and related entities (1983- 1995) including IMS Health Incorporated and Cognizant Corporation. She has also been the President of Enterprise Associates, LLC; the venture capital division of IMS Health Incorporated.
She has represented Enterprise Associates in respect of its partnership interest in Information Associates and Information Associates-II (Trident’s Fund II and Fund III). Venetia was also Senior Vice President, Venture Development, at Cognizant Corporation and has held executive positions in new product development and marketing at D&B and sales management positions at AT&T and IBM.
While she has been beset by her responsibilities, it has by no means dulled her capacity for entrepreneurship. She has launched her own start-up telecommunications company. Her impressive body of work leaves no doubt to her capabilities for business.
She has been visiting India since the 1980’s and has a hand in many Indian startups that Trident has invested in. Her belief is that any investor has to be a partner and assist the entrepreneur for the venture’s success. She makes yearly trips to India to oversee and guide her portfolio companies showing that she practices what she preaches.
Some of Trident’s portfolio companies in India are
- OPI (Outsource Partners International) – a leading business process outsourcing firm focused on finance and accounting (F&A) outsourcing.Microland - India's leading pure play IT Infrastructure Management and Technical Support Services outsourcing company.
- Neilsoft – provider of outsourced engineering design services for the construction, mechanical and software engineering services areas.
- Minglebox - one of the fastest growing Internet sites in India and is an early leader in the local social networking space.
- Elucido - provides digital signage and digital display solutions in India.
OPI, Microland and Neilsoft are counted among the Global Services 100 listing of innovative service providers.
Her passion for entrepreneurship gives her great satisfaction in working with entrepreneurs. The challenges that a startup brings to an entrepreneur drives her to greater efforts. Her success with startups has many explanations. The most prevalent one being that as a woman she is more perceptive and attuned to the dynamics of people around her than her male counterparts, which in turn enhances her instincts and performance as a VC.
Trident is a company that looks to the future especially when investing. This may explain their keenness to invest despite the recessionary air that is going around. The added lure of good assets at lesser prices than in a normal bullish market and its previous success during the downturn in 2001 -2002 has made Trident more confident and investor friendly.
Venetia says, “People are the real equity and in people I put my equity. Over the years I have honed the skill of finding the right people and developing them. If you empower a person, you will be surprised the feats one can achieve.”
Venetia Kontogouris and Trident Capital are on the lookout for Entrepreneurs in India who meet their criteria. For a more comprehensive look at what they are seeking in a potential investment venture have a look at www.tridentcap.com