We couldn’t have done it without Damir. He’s been with us since our days in a Santa Monica WeWork.Travis VanderZanden,
CEO and Co-founder of Bird
How did your upbringing influence your desire to get into venture capital?
Damir — My parents were willing to take risks. They moved to several countries where they didn’t speak the language, bought assets they believed in (even if they seemed beyond their means) and changed careers — all in the pursuit of success. I recently visited their hometowns in Bosnia & Herzegovina which were humble beginnings. Despite the environment they grew up in, my parents have always dreamed big and focused on “what can go right". I want to back founders who remind me of my parents.
Why do you think now is the right time to build software for small businesses?
Damir — The internet became publicly available in 1991. It is 28 years old today. This means that the young adults of today grew up not knowing a world where the internet did not exist. The 28 year old of today is 6-7 years into their careers and perhaps has some savings. They are starting to think about opening their own businesses. And you can bet that they will expect to use tools that rival the other applications on their phones and computers when doing so.
Why are you still excited about ecommerce?
Damir — Much like my point about building software for small businesses, I think we’re still in the early stages of a generational change in terms of how people consume. We used to live in a world of limited choice - what was on the shelf was what you could get. We now live in a world of infinite choice. That doesn’t just mean more products. It means that new categories of products will emerge. It also means that the form factors of many products that we consume will change drastically. The business models around how we access those products will change. How we hear about those products will change. It has never been a better time to start an ecommerce business and there is still so much opportunity.
Damir joined Index Ventures in 2015 and focuses on venture and growth investments in e-commerce / retail and mobility. Prior to Index, Damir was at Goldman Sachs, where he worked on M&A and capital markets transactions for consumer / retail, healthcare, and cleantech companies, as well as at Coatue, where he was involved with the firm's investments in Lyft and Avvo. Damir has also worked at Activision Blizzard, Apple, and Flextronics.
Damir graduated summa cum laude from the University of Southern California with a B.S. in business administration. He currently lives in San Francisco and can be found on a soccer field in his spare time.