GRIP, Internships Abroad

Exploring Venture Capital

October 1, 2018
By Ria Gandhi, Wharton '21

GREE Ventures - Singapore

Before beginning my internship at GREE Ventures, I was unsure what working at a venture capital firm would entail. Growing up in the Silicon Valley, I had been surrounded by the talk of startups and venture capital all my life, but had never gotten the chance to delve deeper into the field. At Penn, I am studying finance, statistics, and computer science, and before this summer, I had no idea if I wanted to go into financial services or tech after graduation. Now, I feel like I have a more defined path (that is still subject to change!) when it comes to my career.

This summer, I was able to work on a wide variety of projects surrounding sourcing startups, conducting analysis and industry research, and working with GREE's current portfolio companies. I attended three tech conferences in Singapore that brought in hundreds of startups, and my job was to meet with the ones I found interesting and set up meetings with the founders. It was amazing to be able to see what the Southeast Asian startup landscape looks like right now. 

The next part of my job involved analyzing these startups after I met with the founders, providing insight into the company and my own opinions to help my supervisors make a decision on whether or not they were interested in investment. My favorite part of my summer was the industry research I conducted, where I performed a comparable company analysis on co-living companies, prepared a comprehensive report on the Indonesian health tech ecosystem, and assessed logistics tech marketplaces. These are just some examples of the cool, interesting research I conducted and are some of the reasons why I want to one day come back and work in venture capital.

Lastly, I was able to do some work for GREE's current portfolio companies, including using Tableau to track a company's performance and preparing investment reports and cap tables for additional funding. 

All in all, I am extremely thankful for having supervisors that placed so much responsibility and trust within their interns, as that allowed me to learn and grow more than I would have imagined from this internship. I definitely want to go into venture capital in the future after working in both finance and tech roles for a few years.

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The Global Research and Internship Program (GRIP) provides outstanding undergraduate and graduate students the opportunity to intern or conduct research abroad for 8 to 12 weeks over the summer. Participants gain career-enhancing experience and global exposure that is essential in a global workforce. Placements and funding awards are available.