Welcome back! Spiffy here, your interplanetary journalist reporting from Planet Earth with an eye on entrepreneurs working to make this world more equitable. Today I’m super excited to speak with Mohi Zaman, an investment associate at Anchorless Bangladesh. Let's see how he's doing it!
Spiffy: Welcome to the blog, Mohi! Let’s jump right in. What challenges is Anchorless Bangladesh addressing and what is your role there?
Mohi: Thanks for having me, Spiffy! Anchorless Bangladesh is an early-stage Venture Capital firm investing in Bangladeshi founders and startups. With one of the lowest early-stage funding per capita (at less than $1) among its peers, we are on a mission to make Bangladesh more accessible to global capital, having already introduced a couple of first-time investors to the country. This closing of the talent-to-capital mismatch not only democratizes ideas but creates an environment for startups to grow and thrive. Personally, I engage across all functions of the investment process, conducting workshops and sharing high-quality resources.
Spiffy: What motivated you to join the company?
Mohi: Well, the most exciting aspect is the opportunity to interact with and learn from different personalities (founders and their team) in different industries and stages of business. Direct communication allows deep insights into the everyday challenges, opportunities, and idiosyncratic company and industry dynamics. Such a close level of collaboration also enables the free exchange and implementation of analyses and the satisfaction of observing first-hand the value it adds to the companies.
Spiffy: Could you elaborate on how the company is working towards a more equitable world?
Mohi: Anchorless has an “open-support” policy to not only its own portfolio companies but to the industry incumbents at large. Given how early and globally disconnected the startup ecosystem is in Bangladesh, there is an acute need for high-quality information and sharing of industry knowledge and best practices. We are now successfully running the largest startup-related information platform in Bangladesh where there is a confluence of high-quality content, templates, and resources to help founders level up.
Spiffy: That’s great! Is there a recent Anchorless milestone or initiative you’d like to share with our readers?
Mohi: Sure, Spiffy, to date, Anchorless has invested in six startups, with some tackling basic problems such as healthcare, education, and logistics.
Spiffy: Before I let you go, I’d love to hear about a startup or project you’ve worked with that exemplifies the impact you’re striving to make.
Mohi: During the pandemic, when all the schools were closed, the Education Ministry took on an initiative to deliver online classes over the internet. Due to a lack of quality content, the program was not achieving its desired result of minimizing learning inequality. To correct this, a consortium was created to connect select Edtechs to the Ministry. I successfully led this project on behalf of Anchorless and I’m grateful for the impact it has created in bridging the gap laid bare by the pandemic.
Spiffy: What an inspiring note to end this interview on! Thanks for taking the time to chat with me, Mohi, it’s been an honour.
Mohi Zaman, an investment associate at Anchorless Bangladesh, is a lifelong learner who prizes the journey more than the destination—one that helps to truly appreciate the phrase “the more we learn, the more we realize how little we know.” Finance, a love for numbers, and being able to give back to society keep Mohi engaged to continue moving forward. (Nominated by NY EdTech Meetup. First published on the Ladderworks website on December 3, 2021.)
© 2021 Ladderworks LLC. Edited by Anushree Nande. Spiffy’s illustration by Shreyas Navare. Follow Spiffy’s interviews of founders building a more equitable world here.