Gil Dibner is a venture investor in tech-driven enterprise companies across Europe and Israel. Gil joined DFJ Esprit in September of 2013 as a Partner after eight years of venture capital experience in the United States, Europe, and Israel.
At DFJ, he led two investments: RhodeCode out of Berlin (together with EarlyBird) and Crate out of Dornbirn, Austria (together with Sunstone). Gil came to London and joined Index Ventures in 2012 as a principal focused on seed and early stage investing in Europe and Israel.
Gil grew up in Boston, calls Tel Aviv home, and works in London. We posed some questions to him about the challenges of investing and what can be learnt from Start Ups within the EU, here's what he had to say...
What are the key challenges building in building globally significant businesses in Europe?
I think the biggest challenge is thinking globally. European founders sometimes have a tendency to think too locally or delay globalizing their business until a later stage. To achieve large outcomes, I think companies should be thinking globally from day one. That's more about mentality than location.
What recent trends have you seen in European venture investing?
I'm glad you asked. I put out a 47 page slide deck with a lot of data on this just recently. Here's the link.
What lessons can be learned from the startup ecosystems such as Berlin and Tel Aviv?
Tel Aviv and Berlin are very different. Tel Aviv is really a hub of technology innovation which has spawned lots of entrepreneurship. Berlin has become - for many historical reasons- a hub of entrepreneurship, which has spawned a pretty impressive amount of technology as well. The two hubs are totally different, but they share a similar energy and focus on building companies. Both are great places to live and work.
Are there any trends or market opportunities that you are particularly interested in?
The two hubs are totally different, but they share a similar energy and focus on building companies. Both are great places to live and work. I'm Pretty Excited about deep enterprise tech and I see that sprouting up all over Europe - both in hubs like Berlin, London and Tel Aviv and in other less well-travelled locations as well. Areas like machine learning, micro-services, software-degined networking, IoT security and others are all very exciting.