Iris Choi is a Partner at Floodgate. She drives corporate relationships and works closely with portfolio companies on a range of strategic areas, including business development and financings.
Before Floodgate, Iris spent 10 years in investment banking, most recently with Goldman Sachs, focused on mergers and acquisitions. She worked directly with CEOs of leading consumer internet, enterprise software, and digital media companies, including The Walt Disney Company, SanDisk, Sabre Holdings, Yahoo!, and Activision. Before Goldman Sachs, Iris advised broadband service providers on market entry and financing options throughout Europe, and started working in early stage venture capital in the early 2000s.
Cooking, Krav Maga, Old-School Photography
MBA, Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania
Technology is a powerful tool to improve society. I’ve seen it first hand from when I spent my early childhood in Korea. By the time Korea entered the global stage as the host of the Summer Olympics in 1988, the Korea we had left behind was a distant memory. It had become an industrialized country and a modernized society and Seoul had the same hopeful, electric energy as Hong Kong or New York. Watching the country transform via their commitment to the technology sector showed me how investments in technology can increase the standard of living within one generation and become a major part of a country’s economy. My experience at Samasource (a non-profit tech start up) provided further evidence of how technology can provide opportunities for talented individuals all over the world, freeing them from the limitations of local economies.
I had a career in investment banking before Floodgate, and spent over a decade advising large technology and media companies on financings, mergers and corporate strategy. After working with later stage companies, I wanted to leverage my earned wisdom of what it takes for a company to successfully exit via a sale or IPO, to help build companies at the earliest stages. The desire to be hands on in supporting companies and Founders at ideation stage on their path to becoming Thunder Lizards drew me to Floodgate.
I have a deep respect for visionary Founders. I admire the courage with which they leap into yet defined categories rife with risk and uncertainty, and the conviction with which they build out their version of the future. It’s an honor to be a co-conspirator to Founders and be along for the journey. It’s a privilege to celebrate the milestones, overcome the challenges, and witness the creativity, humility, leadership and resilience core to every company. It’s in these early stages you feel like you’re taking on the world together but only if first you believe.