I admire Richard Webb for his insight on maximising human and financial capitals. As someone who has founded several initiatives, he has clearly learned to use his strengths on investing in ventures that serve his purpose well.
Richard Webb founded Red Ocean in 2005 to fund disruptive ventures and more recently co-founded StartMesh, a global Venture Catalyst to mentor and develop mid-stage start-ups with disruptive and innovative data, resource, media, and commerce enabling platforms. In his first two years, StartMesh has grown to serve a portfolio of 24 start-ups in 23 cities (in all continents), and its team of over 85 members.
He has incubated and/or founded over 15 ventures, some of which have been successfully sold to larger organizations or floated on public stock exchanges. He is currently the CEO/Co-Founder of Startmesh, the Chairman of The Inspiration Room, the CEO/Founder of South Bondi, the Chairman/Co-Founder of Badalya, the Chairman of Systema, and the Chairman and Founder of Red Ocean.
How did you come up with the idea for Red Ocean? What problem were you trying to solve?
I had been a serial entrepreneur for about 15 years and created Red Ocean as a new type of venture capital fund which helped support purposeful ideas commercially succeed. The problem I was trying to solve was executional failure.
Can you tell us more about investment thesis? How does this impact your venture?
We are investing on platforms that will enable new economy that does not rely on the ever increasing levels of consumption and more levels of mass customisation.
What personal habits have served you best in your years as a founder?
Surround yourself with exceptional people who have aligned values; work hard; and build a large global network as a support system.
What risks are you currently facing and how do you deal with it?
We always face the risk of an ever connected and easily destabilised world. We like to believe that the trends are our friends and we are very disciplined with regard to our vision.
How do you expand your network of entrepreneurs and investors and how do they help your business grow?
We believe that the network is three sided; entrepreneurs, human capital, and financial capital. Our success is based on growing these three sides simultaneously.
What advice would you have for aspiring entrepreneurs looking to start their own initiative?
Understand the difference between a purposeful driver and enabler. And play to your strength.
About Red Ocean
Red Ocean is the venture investment vehicle which supports all three of these businesses: (1) Startmesh, a global technology venture catalyst; (2) Badalya, a global food venture catalyst; and (3) South Bondi, a global social venture catalyst.