Introducing the FP50 Mentor Network
The FP50 Mentor Network is a newly established community of experienced entrepreneurs and functional experts in London who are stepping forward to offer their help to the next generation of ecommerce startups.
Mentoring startups is often a hit and miss affair. Both for the mentor and the entrepreneur. Mentors want to be useful and can find it difficult to find the best startups that can benefit from their expertise. Entrepreneurs find it difficult to access the relevant experts that can help them and who want to do so.
Paying it Forward
FP50 Mentors are seasoned startup entrepreneurs or functional experts who’ve already gone through many of the challenges that early stage startups face and will be able to give invaluable advice, insight and guidance. Forward Partners hold a profile of each mentor detailing their relevant expertise and entrepreneurs in the Forward Partners portfolio can ask to be introduced to mentors that they believe they would benefit most from.
Nic Brisbourne, Managing Partner at Forward Partners explains, “As an entrepreneur, being able to talk with someone that has been through what you’re going through can be incredibly helpful. Experienced entrepreneurs know this and want to give something back. In setting up the FP50 Mentor Network we aim to help build those relationships to support the founders that we’ve backed.”
After an initial meeting, if there’s a good match with “chemistry” and value, both parties can decide to continue the relationship on terms that suit them. Usually this is an unpaid activity for the mentor. It may sometimes give the mentor the opportunity take a more formal advisory role as the company progresses or possibly even invest in the company if they wish.
Mentors help entrepreneurs by asking helpful probing questions, sharing experience and making useful introductions. “The mentor relationship that we had with Romain was invaluable. Not only did he help us think through our tech strategy, he also provided really helpful feedback on our overall strategy as we developed our business model”. - Matt Fox, CEO of Snaptrip.
“I developed a strong relationship with Matt and his co-founder Dan. They took on board my advice we saw amazing progress, so much so that I decided to invest in the company at their next funding round”. - Romain Eude, CEO of Utelly, Technical mentor to Snaptrip and founding FP50 member.
Forward Partners also organises quarterly events for registered mentors in the network to meet, whether or not they are actively mentoring an entrepreneur at that time.