Betty Cai
Principal
Betty joined Eight Roads in 2011 and focuses on investments in the consumer, education and TMT sectors.

What motivates you?

China is becoming the world’s most energetic economy and venture capital is the most active part of that. Being involved in this ecosystem, meeting talented people and listening to innovative ideas is the most exciting thing for me.

What current technology trend do you get most excited about and why?

The online-to-offline business model, especially in China. It allows traditional offline merchants to expand their business to online consumers and is a market space that is growing explosively. The potential of this business model is enormous, since current e-commerce penetration rate is only about 10%.

How do you think the investment landscape is changing in China – and what does that mean for entrepreneurs?

Previously, the investment landscape was more about C2C (copy to China), but now China can incubate its own models, technology and brands. The Chinese venture capital ecosystem is filling up and entrepreneurs need to focus on innovation. There are now more complete and diversified capital resources for private companies, from incubators and angel investors to venture capital and private equity. There are also more diversified exit channels, including overseas and domestic IPOs as well as mergers and acquisitions, especially from Baidu, Alibaba & Tencent.

If you could only give one piece of advice to an up and coming entrepreneur, what would it be?

Focus on creating core competency that can sustain you in the long term, rather than chasing short term goals.

Which company do you wish you’d backed?

Dada. It is an online-to-offline last-mile delivery service company with a crowd-sourcing model. While the company is still young and faces severe competition from other online-to-offline giants, it is the pioneer in this space and is very ambitious. It is hard to say how things will turn out, but it may become a serious threat to the current giants.