“There’s more than one path to becoming a partner in a venture capital fund”

Nofar Amikam. Photo: PR
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BrandVoice

Nofar Amikam

Title: Early-stage Investor and General Partner at Glilot Capital Partners.

Past positions: Business Development for startups at Microsoft and Deloitte, Investment Manager at JVP, a member of the founding team at ITC, and Senior Team Lead in IDF Unit 8200.

Company Portfolios: Lightlytics, Anecdotes, Genoox, BrandTotal, as well as another three companies that are still in stealth mode. Previously, Amikam was a board member at Exceed.ai, which was acquired by Genesys.


Nofar Amikam was appointed General Partner at Glilot Capital Partners, after holding business development positions at Microsoft and Deloitte Israel. She joined Glilot four years ago, with a vision to establish the Value Creation Team, which helps the fund’s entrepreneurs on achieving product-market fit and closing their first paying deals, by connecting them with senior executives at large global corporations. Airbnb’s VP Engineer and T-Mobile’s Global CISO are just two of the senior executives who are advisors at Glilot’s portfolio companies. 

Eighteen months ago, Amikam began focusing all of her efforts on investing in early-stage startups, and leveraging her operational experience and her vast network to support the portfolio companies she is investing in.

“I joined Glilot Capital Partners knowing that I wanted to become an investment partner, but not in the traditional route, of being appointed principal first.” Says Nofar. “I have managed investments before in venture capital funds (JVP), but at Glilot, it was important to me to build a structured process of value creation for portfolio companies and work closely with the companies while leveraging my operational background and global network before joining the investment team. After all, the ability to support the companies and open doors for them is one of the most important capabilities of an investment partner”.

“There haven’t been almost any other women in the venture capital industry who become General Partners by following such an untraditional path. Although in recent years, we’ve seen that more funds are choosing to establish Value Creation Teams, there are very few women who’ve been promoted to partner after managing such a team. 

Nofar, an early-stage Investor and General Partner at Glilot Capital Partners, used to work at Microsoft and Deloitte, as an investment Manager at JVP (the founding team at ITC), and as a senior team lead in the IDF unit 8200. Glilot Capital Partners, founded more than a decade ago, has led 12 exits since then, including CyberX, LightCyber and IntSights. The fund invests in projects in the lime stages as well as in later stages. Glilot has been ranked as one of the best-performing funds in the world by the Preqin Research Institute for the past five years and is considered one of the best venture capital funds in Israel, with portfolio companies such as Ermetic, Lightlytics, Anecdotes and Upstream.

Paving the Way

There are almost no similar models, in the Israeli venture capital industry, of women who paved the path to a partnership that was not in the usual way. Although in recent years we are seeing more funds choosing to set up Value Creation teams, we hardly see female partners coming from these positions.

“I believe this is about to change, and that we will see more women and men in the venture capital industry who have significant operational experience in sales, business development, and leading value creation teams – since such positions provide invaluable experience for portfolio companies they work with. If this journey will pave the road for other women who strive to become a partner then I’d be even more grateful for this amazing ride”.

“Male and female entrepreneurs face complex challenges in their personal and professional journeys. The pressure is intense and unrelenting, and it’s not easy to figure out how to achieve a work-life balance, especially when it comes to complicated interpersonal situations such as having to lay off employees. I don’t like to generalize when it comes to gender, but it could very well be that women investors have the ability to offer support to entrepreneurs at important junctions in a more sensitive and compassionate way than men. As an investor, I believe my role is to support the entrepreneurs by helping them design their business strategy, build their company, and open doors for them in the market, but also to support them when going through challenging times and facing humane managerial dilemmas. In addition, I am confident that having a female presence on the board generates more balanced and thoughtful meetings”.

“When women come to me with career-related questions and fear that they won’t succeed in blending their career aspirations with motherhood – it is mostly because they feel that they have to choose between being a good mother or having a successful career. I believe you can successfully achieve both. It’s definitely not easy, but it is possible. I became a partner when I was eight months pregnant, and undoubtedly, I had to make concessions, but at the end of the day, I feel a tremendous amount of satisfaction from both worlds. An extremely smart woman, who is an incredible mother and a successful career woman, once told me that regardless of how much time I spend with my daughter, I will always feel like it wasn’t enough. Just like I will always feel like I need more time to close additional investment deals. In my opinion, the key is to thrive to live peacefully with this feeling and do your very best in both worlds.”

Glilot Capital Partners was founded over a decade ago, and since then has led 12 exits, including for companies such as LightCyber, CyberX, and IntSights. The fund invests in early-stage startups, as well as in late-stage companies. Glilot was ranked by Preqin, an investment data company, as one of the venture capital firms with the highest yield in the world, in the past five years, and is considered one of the best venture capital firms in Israel. 


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