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“I haven’t yet met a VC firm more aligned with my frame of mind and goals.” – Meet Jessica Rameau

Wellstreet encourages the portfolio and its team to take active ownership, accountability, and responsibility for their growth path. I firmly believe in putting your head down, rolling up your sleeves and getting to work, regardless if you're the underdog. If you bite off more than you can chew – then you just chew!
Published:
December 1, 2023
reading time In Minutes:
8
“I haven’t yet met a VC firm more aligned with my frame of mind and goals.” – Meet Jessica Rameau
You don’t build a business—you build people and then people build the business. These are the stories of the people who built Wellstreet and our portfolio companies. Meet Jessica Rameau.

First things first!

Who are you?
I’m European at birth, a generalist and a doer. I moved to Sweden five years ago, fascinated by the tech ecosystem and all the fantastic products and services coming out of the Nordics. I love to work on multiple things all at once and I like things to move fast – to get things done. I’m usually very direct with people, no matter the situation, but it comes from a good place. My intentions are to make things clear, avoid miscommunications, and focus on solutions. 

What's Your Background?
Originally, I was an academic with a bachelor's and master's in International Relations and Development. But, as I like things to progress and change fast, I moved on to work as a business operator, first coordinating and setting up processes from the ground up, then dealing with more strategic assignments. 

What's your expertise and what roles have you had in the past in the organisations you have been in?
I began working in early-stage investments back in 2015 for a family office in London. I soon became responsible for managing their portfolio of 25 startups, a role which I performed for five years. During that time, I also started getting involved in innovation support for larger institutions, such as the UK Department for International Development, and helping startups with fundraising. 

I’m, therefore, a business development generalist with strong roots in operational work and have been an investment and portfolio manager for almost ten years.

Jess & Wellstreet

Your Wellstreet Journey, tell it to us?
My history with Wellstreet started in 2019, after choosing to relocate to Sweden. I couldn’t imagine a VC firm more aligned with my frame of mind and goals than Wellstreet. After I kick-started my journey here as an investment director, I became a partner and Chief Investment Officer, still in 2019, and the firm’s first Fund Manager in 2020. Apart from Wellstreet’s Ventures Fund I, I now also run the Ventures Fund II, the company’s third fund.  

Why is Wellstreet a good fit for you?
The fast-paced environment at Wellstreet provides constant new challenges and the freedom to forge our own paths promotes creativity. Wellstreet encourages the portfolio and its team to take active ownership, accountability, and responsibility. I firmly believe in putting your head down, rolling up your sleeves and getting to work, regardless if you're the underdog. If you bite off more than you can chew – then you just chew!

Career and life development 

What attracts you to VC and what will/would make you leave?
I absolutely love the VC environment and working with so many exciting companies all at once. Meeting startups at such an early stage opens up so much opportunity to make a positive impact and be part of the value creation. At Wellstreet, we focus on ensuring that the companies can take full advantage of our support to become cash flow positive, growing sustainably. So, in all honesty, I could be tempted to leave the sector if the unicorn hype returned since I think that’s not a healthy way to grow companies.

Any advice for a peer that wants to work in VC? 
Being an investor in the VC industry looks like fun from the outside – and it is – but you need to be aware and prepared for the constant context-switching and balancing reactive and proactive mindsets, which can be really tough. Company building in the early stages, from month to month or week to week, is a roller coaster, and you’re in it together with the founders, so you ride the wave with them and have just as many sleepless nights. They count on you and you have to show up. 

What does ”pro-active investor with a purpose-built ecosystem” mean to you?
I have to turn every stone. Whenever I feel that something isn't right, I have to go there. Every time I let it be, the issue surfaces and bites back three months later. When everything is going (more or less according to plan), my job is to find new ways to enhance a company even more, to take it even further, faster and better, and that’s when our ecosystem comes into play.

Getting a little personal

What are you passionate about? 
I’m passionate about motivating people to achieve something unique, and empowering people to realise that the agency is theirs, that they hold the key, no one else. It’s up to them to take control and action, and that way, their future is theirs. 

What’s your most developed sense or skill at work? And personally?
I have a developed sense for asking the right questions to uncover what I need to know, fast, an ability that comes in handy in my line of work. Otherwise, it is my sense of smell :)

Any life or work events that have affected your career more than you thought at the time?
One of the key persons in the Wellstreet network pool is my mentor Kate Grey, who has provided several workshops and mentoring sessions for our portfolio over the years. I had this particular session with her years ago when she packaged my whole career and experience from an outside perspective which made me realise where my value was. It was a defining moment for sure, and I probably wouldn’t have secured a place on the Wellstreet team without it :). That and my second and final interview at Wellstreet, of course!

What about outside of work? Tell me about a challenge you have overcome. And what are your passions?
Learning Swedish was a challenge I’m proud to say I overcame and feel much more comfortable with! My passions include music (from 70s pop, 80s rock to 90s hip hop – I have almost a thousand vinyl records at home), art, and hosting my friends and family. I really like laughing and dancing. I also really appreciate good, hearty and authentic food (particularly French food).

What does the future hold?

What are you most excited about with Wellstreet and the three to five upcoming years? 
I’m excited to see how the investments in our first fund continue to develop towards exit. And how the companies in our new fund hopefully move on to become brands, products and services, that are known and loved by an ever wider audience. 

What are the investment trends for 2024? How do you see the Nordic VC market evolution behaving?

  • VC industry: I think (and hope) we will see a market where the narrative is more focused on exits and distribution, as opposed to series A valuations as a measure of success. This should be coupled with most likely a shorter time to exit, with investors looking at multiple options, including Private Equity acquisitions, which are becoming more common for VC-backed companies. 
  • Tech companies: they will be funded by a bigger mixture of capital sources, where VC will only be one of many. And raising VC funding should not be the goal, or celebrated as the achievement, despite what the headlines might have you believe. Building a successful business is the goal, and most founders are better off staying away from VC and focusing on for example debt funding.
  • AI: as gen AI becomes commoditised, we should see more companies creating value based on uniqueness/accessibility of data sets or ownership of the customer base or application forum.
  • Dealflow: it will be the end of the “lifestyle entrepreneur” era and the return of the savvy business builder, full of grit and resilience, coupled with commercial skills and market understanding.

What do you expect is your next life endeavour?
My hope is that in the future I can retire to the French countryside and advise companies as an investor or an active LP in Wellstreet’s future funds. 

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