Updated: Jul 12, 2022
Cathy Gao, Partner at Sapphire Ventures. Cathy was immersed in Texas culture when she moved from Shanghai to Texas without an ESL teacher to help facilitate the transition. Having that experience had a fundamental effect on her as a person, teaching her to lean into new experiences and not fear them.
In this episode, Cathy discusses some of the key differences between being an operator at a growth stage company versus being at a growth stage venture firm and shares the importance of being scrappy when getting your foot in the door in a venture. She notes, “have a very clear message about why you are interested in the venture, why you think you'd be good at a venture, and be persistent. It only takes one person to hear you.”
Cathy has been an investor at multiple stages and a business operator. As a partner at Sapphire Ventures, Cathy specializes in B2B SaaS companies focusing on digital customer experience, the future of work and collaboration, and digital health. Cathy led the firm’s investments, boards of involve.ai and SafeGraph, and is a board observer at Gem, Medable, UJET, and Splashtop.