Eight Roads started investing 50 years ago, since then we’ve made hundreds of investments. Some have turned perceptions on their head, some took a while to find their feet, others went on to reshape the world.
We want to collect these stories, to find out more about the founders, the businesses they built and the themes which framed them, whether that be changing demographics, the burden of healthcare provision, or the march of big data. And we don't want to only show the high points but the struggles and wrong turns too. Our hope is that other founders will be inspired by these stories and find comfort in knowing that every company goes through good and bad times.
Some of the stories, like the rise and rise of Alibaba are well known. Others less so, like InnoGames, the company built by two brothers and their best friend in Germany, who dropped out of university to follow their dream of creating their own computer game. What we’ve realised is that these companies might sit in different industries or be located on opposite sides of the world but often the issues are similar - whether that’s finding world class talent, navigating internationalisation or iterating on the product. We have begun to tag each story thematically, for example, a Hidden Gem, Patient Capital, or a Disruptor.
We have only just begun and will continue to collect and document. The resulting compendium might contain 100 different companies or a 100 different themes within the same single company: all we know is that each one has a story to tell.