Soline Kauffmann-Tourkestansky

Soline is our ESG & Sustainability Director. Based in London, she focuses on helping founders adopt best practice when it comes to creating sustainable value for their businesses and all stakeholders involved. 

I’ve always been curious about people who are different, outliers with a bias for action and a commitment to making a positive change. A large number of entrepreneurs fall into that category. Most are unhappy with the status quo and are looking to radically transform their direct environment. Partnering with them, I hope to be their eyes, ears and hands-on help with all things sustainable, problem-solving with them, and helping them build long-lasting companies which can stand as legacies their founders are proud of. 

I’m a happy mix of French-Chinese-Russian 

My personal heritage and my education in the UK have completely shaped my view of the world…and my taste for slightly exotic food combinations. Beyond nationality and culture, I feel European first and foremost. I fundamentally believe that our diversity is the source not only of many comical lost in translation jokes but also great innovation and strength.

There is no business on a dead planet  

Fact. Please refer to The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Foundation, Star Wars and Dune for more details on challenges linked to intergalactic business trade.

Most founders want to do good…

There is a nascent paradigm shift amongst the current and upcoming generation of entrepreneurs: most are expressing a will to contribute and bring about positive change within their businesses as well as across the stakeholders they are interacting with. As an increasing number of founders do well by doing good, their actions will create systemic change and install new norms. 

…and they need support doing it

Change is hard to build. The best founders will increasingly choose investors who are supporters and enablers of their long term vision of a sustainable business.  Investors who optimise for long-term gains will slowly but surely win the most value-creating deals.

I worked on both sides of the startup aisle, as an operator and in VC

I started my career in diplomacy before moving to the private sector, working first in corporate organisations before launching a startup. My failed entrepreneurial attempt taught me more in 1.5 years about life and business than my four prior professional years combined. Joining the venture capital industry subsequently, I’ve since had the privilege to support talented founders and operators with their ESG activities. Each day, I am fascinated by the power of what an entrepreneurial team can bring to life  

There is magic in entrepreneurship: I am fascinated by the notion that a single idea, a focused thought can be shaped into being and become material for millions of people. I am hopeful that when enough entrepreneurs believe they can do well by doing good, it will become an existing reality.
Soline Kauffmann-Tourkestansky

Entrepreneurs and investors are predominantly hyper rational individuals

Both rely on data to make informed decisions. Yet, nurturing one’s intuition can also bring about great innovation. Intuition is one of the most ancient muscles built in the human psyche, intuitive knowledge the source of all great achievements according to Einstein.

I have two Masters from the School of Oriental and African Studies and Sciences Po  I loved learning at university and feel privileged to have received a formal education. Yet my most valuable teachings have been dispensed by people around me, my parents and family, friends and partner who have shaped my character by imprinting notions of resilience, perseverance and kindness. I am grateful to them.

I can hold my breath for 4 minutes and 3 seconds

Not while I’m looking at cryptokitties trades, but rather when I practice apnea. It sounds like a lot, but you can do it too. Tip: cold water on your face helps, it triggers your mammalian reflex. 

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