#SheStartedIt : Gabrielle Thomas, Impact Investor

If you have the bravery to start anything, be it writing a book, starting a business, inventing a new recipe, launching a comedy club with your friends, then pat yourself on the back. You should be celebrated. Starting something from scratch is not easy, and keeping at it to actually make it successful and have an impact is even harder. After interviewing countless successful women founders for the past four years, we now have a pretty good idea of what success looks like and it comes in all shapes and forms. We are curating this series to profile women and girls trailblazers met on the She Started It Screening Tour, who would have totally deserved to be in our documentary — people whose grit and determination will lift you up. Hope you enjoy. Hit the comments for feedback!

Gabrielle Thomas is French, she is a Venture Capitalist and Co-Founder of an “Impact VC range of funds”, French pioneers for tech startups with impact.

What did you start ?
I wanted to favor diversity and “impact driven” projects. I started to believe that: to do so , I should be a Tech Venture Capitalist myself. So I found a VC position. It was not so easy but I wrote to and met dozens of people until I found a job as a VC at XAnge in Paris. Into XAnge, I co-founded an “Impact VC range of funds”, which are the French pioneers for tech startups with impact. We are currently raising our third fund ;)
Why did you want to start it ?
I am a professional strongly involved in the projects I run, so I wanted to commit myself to concrete and meaningful. Through my VC job I have kind of an independence and emulation. Every day, I meet various entrepreneurs with high skills and focuses on specific industries and, seriously, it rocks. As an example, Laetitia Gazel-Anthoine who is the CEO of Connecthings, (now based in NYC, but from Paris), set networks of Beacons and NFC to connect cities and it works. Marc-David Choukroun set Food Assembly to support sustainable food models. Pierre-Emmanuel Grange and Olivier Cueille set new embedded tools for philanthropy with MicroDON. I am happy to contribute to these models that bring out more meaning and more sustainability in our lives.
What advice would you give to aspiring entrepreneurs?
I think that finding mentors and models is a good way to dare to do things because you can challenge yourself and get help when you need it. I co-founded a group of peers (CPicy) , inspired by the Sheryl Sandberg Lean In initiative, that helps me a lot by considering women can do great things in entrepreneurship and innovation fields. Having these eight buddies with me in Paris is very powerful to feel inspired and to go on sometimes. Find incredible peers is my advice to get ambitious and set innovative projects
You can find Gabrielle on:
@gabrielle_tho on twitter
https://medium.com/@Gabrielle_tho/ on Medium
https://www.linkedin.com/in/gabrielle-thomas-09b50a30/ on Linkedin