Balderton Capital has named Shikha Ahluwalia as an associate to its investment team covering Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Previously, she worked at JP Morgan’s investment banking division in London. Ahluwalia will be based in Berlin.
Berlin, Wednesday 31 March: Balderton Capital welcomes tech entrepreneur and Founder Shikha Ahluwalia as an Associate to its investment team covering Germany, Austria and Switzerland (DACH). Shikha is the venture firm’s second full-time employee based in Berlin, joining Principal Colin Hanna who has been based in the city since 2019, as part of Balderton’s commitment to investing across the DACH region.
Shikha was on Forbes’ 30 Under 30 List in 2017 for her role in co-founding SBL, India’s largest, D2C women’s fashion e-commerce company, powered by a tech-driven and vertically integrated supply-chain. After running SBL, Shikha set up a tech advisory boutique, offering consulting services to world-leading retailers to help them adopt data-driven and iterative prototyping and digitise faster.
Shikha came to the tech sector from JP Morgan’s Investment Banking Division in London. Prior to that she studied at leading German business school WHU – Otto Beisheim School of Management where she graduated top of the class with her thesis on game theory.
Balderton is one of the most active investors at Series A, with 10 current investments across DACH including Contentful, Infarm, SOPHiA Genetics and McMakler. In the past year, Demodesk (Munich) and vivenu (Düsseldorf) have also joined the portfolio. Collectively, these 10 companies employ more than 2,400 employees around the world.
Shikha Ahluwalia said: “Over the past few years, I have seen the DACH start-up ecosystem evolve rapidly. We at Balderton believe the next European giant will be a technology company, and know that the DACH ecosystem plays a significant role in helping form category-leading technology companies. As a former founder myself, I have first-hand experience with the unique challenges of running young businesses. I am excited to contribute and support founders on their own journey as part of Balderton Capital.”
Balderton is looking to double down on its investments in the DACH ecosystem. In Germany alone, there are nearly 2,000 startups, and the country saw a 10.9% increase in venture funding last year according to PitchBook, with tech companies attracting a collective $5.4 billion. Austria was also named as one of Europe’s fastest-growing ecosystems according to the data platform.
Colin Hanna, Principal at Balderton Capital, said: “Shikha’s hiring deepens our commitment to the local Berlin ecosystem and to the DACH region more broadly. We have been actively supporting Founders in Germany for more than a decade. Take Contentful, where we led the Seed round in 2012 and continue to serve on the Board. Or the tremendous growth from companies like infarm and Kaia Health where we have been investors for several years. In the past year alone we have partnered with four businesses in DACH and as we work to find the next great company Shikha’s perspective will sharpen our lens. Shikha’s poise, analytical clarity, and energy were apparent to us since our early conversations and will become an asset for any founder lucky enough to work with her.”
About Balderton Capital
Balderton Capital is a leading venture firm focused exclusively on backing the best European-founded technology companies. In the two decades since our founding, we have worked with hundreds of extraordinary European founders, and have raised eight funds totalling more than $3bn. Previous exited investments include Betfair (FTSE: BET), Digital Surgery (Medtronic), Frontier Car Group (OLX Group), Magic Pony (Twitter), NaturalMotion (Zynga), Peakon (Workday), Recorded Future (Insight Partners), Sunrise (Microsoft), Talend (NASDAQ: TLND) and Yoox Net-a-Porter (BIT: YNAP). Among Balderton’s current portfolio of over 90 companies are Aircall, Carwow, Citymapper, Contentful, Darktrace, Depop, GoCardless, Graphcore, Kobalt Music, Nutmeg, Prodigy Finance, Revolut, SOPHiA Genetics, Tessian, THG (LON: THG), VanMoof, Vestiaire Collective, Vivino and Zego.