The aim of the Morning Talks series of interviews is to present the impact of partnerships on the EU innovation and investment ecosystem.

For this interview, we met with Galyna Isakiv, Head of Portfolio & Operations at  

“We aim to fund the future of Ukraine and be a catalyst to its robust entrepreneurial ecosystem by providing both financial and non-financial support.

Could you delve into your journey at SID Venture Partners as Head of Portfolio & Operations and tell us about your role?

In my case, acting as a Head of Portfolio & Operations means having endless asap resources, being the mother of Fund’s portfolio dragons (aka portfolio companies), managing operations, and never fully completing a to-do list that you had in the morning.

To be specific, my role covers responsibilities on deal sourcing and screening, running investment committees, reporting to General and Limited Partners, deal flow & portfolio management; leading analytics & comms team and internal operations, and establishing partnerships for co-investments.


Can you tell us a bit more about SID Ventures and your investment thesis?

We are an early-stage VC established by C-level tech entrepreneurs from global IT operating across 20+ markets with massive expertise in software development and IT consulting.

We are backing global tech startups founded by visionary Ukrainian or CEE entrepreneurs. Being industry agnostic, we are excited about investing in deep tech, generative AI, B2B, e-commerce, fintech and others.

Our portfolio currently features 19 startups, including three YC companies, Quantum computing masterminds, Red Dot Design awards winners, and Forbes listers. Empowered by co-investments from A16Z, Sequoia, Toyota Ventures and Sequoia.


Looking ahead, how does SID venture capital envision its role in shaping the next generation of Ukrainian technology startups? What are some upcoming areas or sectors you’re particularly excited about?”

SID Venture Partners was officially named the most active investor in Ukrainian startups, investing more than $3,5m and closing 19 deals in two years.

We aim to fund the future of Ukraine and be a catalyst to its robust entrepreneurial ecosystem by providing both financial and non-financial support.

Our role is not only in investing in startups but also in developing entrepreneurial talent in Ukraine. We support founders, equipping them with the skills and knowledge needed to build successful tech companies and expand their reach beyond national borders.

As a generalist fund, we are welcoming startups in numerous technology areas, currently, we are excited about generative AI, deep tech, dev tools, and data analytics as these areas hold tremendous potential for disruption and innovation.


Given that connects innovators and investors, how do you see projects like these influencing the decision-making processes in investment firms like SID Venture Partners? Can such platforms significantly impact the deal flow and investment landscape?

Platforms such as are making venture capitalists’ work easier. Those who utilize them are reaping the rewards, as they provide a curated selection of innovative projects, aid in due diligence, boost a wider network for co-investment and deal-sharing, and encourage data-driven decisions.


What would you say are the advantages that companies gain when they receive EU funding, specifically regarding solid value creation

I would list several advantages, but start with credibility. Receiving EU funding is a signal to investors, clients, and partners that the company has successfully passed the tough selection process and is likely to be a promising and reliable business. It’s a definite boost to a company’s reputation.

Besides financial support, EU funding offers market access, research and innovation opportunities, networking, talent development, and more. However, it’s important for startups to carefully plan and manage their EU-funded projects to maximize the benefits and create lasting value for their businesses.


You have been selected as one of the Jury Members for the Innovation Radar Prize 2023. What strategies or insights do you think are crucial for startups to succeed in pitching their innovations during the in-person event in Lisbon?

I’ve gone through tons of startup interviews and pitches, and that’s what I would advise for the in-person pitch:

    • Make your presentation short and use storytelling. Investors more often engage with stories than raw data.
    • Start with a clear explanation of the problem your innovation addresses and how it can be solved. Make sure a strong fit is there.
    • Ensure you briefly cover all essentials investors might be interested in: team background, market opportunity, unique value proposition and competitive analysis, financial projections, milestones & roadmap.
    • Polish presentation skills. Seriously. Practice your pitch multiple times.
    • Be enthusiastic and confident. Engage the audience in the journey and make them feel like a part of it. Don’t be afraid to add humour.
    • Encourage questions and feedback. Talk to the audience.

Read our last Morning Talks issue with Maria Ana Mesquita: Looking Into The Challenges Faced By Female Entrepreneurs 

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Supported by the European Commission, discovers and supports the most promising EU-funded innovators and connects them with relevant investors and corporates. The initiative was launched to help groundbreaking innovations secure the funding needed for their future commercialisation by offering them tailored support and matchmaking services. 

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Disclaimer: Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology. Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.