From Venezuela to the U.S.
Ep. 69 - Valentina Vitols has had a varied career, moving between politics, photography, app development, and the world of startups. Now an angel investor in Seattle, she mentors women founders to equip them for the journey of entrepreneurship. In helping others, she draws on the many ups and downs she has experienced. Her first company failed, though from the experience she learned that it’s critical to sometimes seek outside help to solve complex business problems. She’s also run for political office in her native Venezuela before coming to the U.S. and launching a photography business. Vitols stresses to her clients the critical role of relationships when growing one’s business. It’s necessary to maintain them even if investment partnerships don’t work out, as everyone you meet may be a resource one day.
In this episode, Valentina describes her entrepreneurial ups and down plus her journey to becoming an angel investor. Listen in to learn tips on how to be clear as an entrepreneur and how to drive your business to success. You will also learn the importance of setting beneficial policies that are good for both immigrants and the US economy.
- The importance of acknowledging both your strengths and weaknesses as an entrepreneur to be successful
- How to take good lessons you learn from bad things that happen to your business
- The importance of asking for business help when you need it and finding a lawyer as a startup owner
- How to foster relationships with angels even when they don’t invest in your business
“Being an entrepreneur is one of the most difficult things you can ever be. I have a lot of respect for people who take that path and that’s why I am so supportive in general with or without investment. I love mentoring and I have mentored countless companies that I have not invested in and I am always open and available for help.” -Valentina Vitols
In this episode you’ll discover:
Valentina describes her childhood in Venezuela where she learned to be resourceful [1:52]
She describes her move from Venezuela to the United States [3:39]
She describes her entrepreneurial journey and how she became an angel investor [5:07]
Tips on how to be clear on who you’re as an entrepreneur/ startup owner [9:12]
Business challenges she went through as a startup owner and the lessons she learned from it [12:41]
The meaning of a business angel and how they help entrepreneurs [14:27]
The difference between a business angel and a partner [15:37]
Tips on what you need to put together as a startup owner [17:58]
Valentina talks about her little son and the fears she has for him [21:24]
The need for policies that support immigrants in the US [24:58]
Valentina advises entrepreneurs to ask for help and foster relationships with angels [28:23]
"Valentina is an angel investor and an attorney. A native of Venezuela, she is a member of Pipeline Angels, Next Wave Ventures and Portfolia.
She worked as a political consultant in Caracas and ran as a candidate for the Latin American Parliament and the House of Representatives of the State of Miranda.
She has worked at the Venezuelan Supreme Court and in tech companies in Venezuela and the US. She is also a photographer with work from all over the world. Valentina delights in and is excited to be able to make a serious business out of something good as an angel investor focused on supporting female entrepreneurs in the social impact space.
She holds a graduate degree in Integrated Marketing Communications, an MFA in Photography, and a law degree.