Elaine Stead – scientist, entrepreneur, and venture capitalist

Sorry we there has been a bit of a gap, there have been some personal matters that diverted us from the podcast. But we are back again now.

This time our guest is the smart and lovely Elaine Stead – scientist, entrepreneur, and venture capitalist. We discussed the importance of getting help for mental health issues, how she transitioned from science to venture capital, and why she loves being part of the startup scene.

Elaine Stead is a venture capital investor based in Adelaide. Her investment track record extends to over 80 startups across Australia, the United States and South East Asia. She has also invested in many of the best.

Elaine Has been a scientist, turned entrepreneur, turned venture capitalist, and never quite shed any of these roles.

Across over two decades in the innovation sector, Elaine has been a serial entrepreneur, founding medtech company Reproductive Health Science and Blue Sky VC a subsidiary of Blue Sky Alternative investments, Human VC and Artefact ventures. She is one of the longest serving still active venture capitalists in Australia, having been involved in the management of over $450 m across five venture fund vintages, four within her own fund manager, Blue Sky VC.

The investments she has been involved in include Go1, Tritium, Vinomofo, Lexer, Fluent Commerce, Hatchtech, Pet Circle, Myriota, Fivecast, Parcel Point, Eloquii, KidSense, Shoes of Prey, Serene Medical, aCommerce, Akulaku, Shopback, Conventus, and many many others.

Elaine has advised several state governments on innovation policy and been responsible for the execution several innovation initiatives, and has extensive experience as a director of public and private companies across both Australia and the US. Elaine has also coached startup founders in startup programs for Thinclab, Rivercity Labs, MuruD, Innovyz, University of Queensland, Bond University, the Australian National University, and Queensland University of Technology.

She’s a director of Cicada Innovations, an advisor to the federal governments Entrepreneurs Program, the architect of the new ventures and entrepreneurship strategy for the ANU, a member of the investment committee member for the ANUCV venture capital fund, and also a regular conference speaker and contributor to publications such as Sydney morning herald, women’ s agenda, InnovationAus and SmartCompany.

Elaine’s profile amongst the innovation ecosystem, in the Australian tech industry and the broader business community, guarantees a high level of trust amongst all stakeholders, unparalleled deal flow, outstanding global networks and  experience in supporting the human leadership of portfolio companies.


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