Supporting Underrepresented Innovators and Entrepreneurs  

Annette is an executive coach and Founding Member of Impact X Capital Partners; a double bottom line venture capital firm focused on supporting underrepresented founders across Europe and, by extension, creating jobs.   

In 2020 across European tech, up to $41b was invested. However, currently less than 3% of all UK venture capital funding goes to female teams, just 0.2% to Black teams, and only 0.02% to Black female teams. Black female entrepreneurship is currently one of the fastest growing entrepreneurial areas. The Founders of Impact X wanted to take action to address these issues. “It was concerning to have highly qualified people investing their own time and resources, gaining traction with their ideas, but consistently not being able to secure capital”.  Impact X has created an ecosystem of support for early-stage entrepreneurs.  As Annette explains, “we were, and are still, addressing a market inefficiency; underrepresented innovators not getting capital”. 

Alongside Impact X and her work as an executive coach, Annette has been involved with many organizations that champion the arts, broaden education, and tackle structural inequality. Having grown up with a family that placed high value in supporting others, Annette explains, “we each decide how we will use our minds, and everyone has their own purpose; I wanted to use mine to improve the lives of other people where I can”. She continued, “I choose to channel my energy with those who can have a real impact on our civic platforms. Essentially, that is the root of all my passions, whether through the arts, business, or politics”. 

Annette came to Birkbeck to explore creative writing and took the course titled ‘The Secret Lives of Women.’ She recently finished her first book, Always Enough, A Global Food Memoir, which combines her family memories and global experiences with the food that connects them.  She is now writing her second book and feels that Birkbeck played an essential part in her journey to becoming a writer. “The course helped me discover a passion I didn’t know I had and helped to take me into my ‘third age’ – my next stage of life.” In offering advice to entrepreneurs and those looking to change or develop their careers, Annette believes that “it is always worthwhile investing in yourself and that’s precisely what I did at Birkbeck, I invested in myself”. 

You can read our full interview with Annette here.