Episode
#25
ENG

About Creating Real Value, Being A Female CEO, 4 Co-Founders, End $80M Round B. Who Said We Can’t Have It All?

Featuring
Meirav Oren (Fainaru),
CEO & Co-founder Versatile


Meirav is the CEO & alongside 3 others, she is the co-founder of  Versatile, a leading ConstructionTech company. She just shared with me the amazing news of closing their B round of $80M within 2 weeks and no deck, led by Insight Partners and Tiger Global.


Meirav shares how she grew up with a General Contractor father, who made her love construction, and a mother that didn't support her leaving the comfort zone at Intel. She talks a lot about being unemployed, and her brother, a real estate developer who lost a worker on his site. She remembers that evening clearly, including thinking to herself that there’s a  gap in data within construction sites - it has to be closed and allow managers to make better decisions. That’s when Versatile was born. Meirav shares a lot of gratitude to those who accompanied her in the beginning - Tidhar group, Autodesk etc.


Embracing a Growth Mindset

Meirav sees Versatile’s job in changing the sequence of events, and controlling the processes within the construction site. When I asked her about being a woman entrepreneur - she said that if you know what you’re doing- gender is not an issue. From her point of view, you have to focus on your  track, set goals, exceed them, and hit your targets.


Meirav shares that when COVID hit, they had no idea what would happen. She believes in complete transparency with the team, sticking to the facts and doing everything she could within her power. That way, she kept her internal focus while showing her vulnerability, which helped her team feel more secure and committed. 


Failure is Only When we Fail to Learn

A superpower in days of uncertainty and always is to be aware of how you respond, communicate, and respond to failures. She believes in Nelson Mandella’s saying that “you either learn or win.” Meirav likes to see failures, as well-paid tuition. Her 1st ever project in Versatile was a complete failure - but it brought her the next investor. This failure made them understand exactly what they needed to improve - and the investor loved it.


A Table of 4 Legs

Meirav describes herself and her 3 co-founders like a 4 legged table - they too have a stable, synergistic, and harmonic relationship.

Each co-founder has a strict domain which he leads and manages, and the CEO makes the final decision. Meirav describes her transition from being a Founder to acting as a CEO  -as the company grows, you have to bring really good people, and that means - you also need to listen to them. She believes in growing your staff - hear all the voices around the table, but eventually - as CEO, DECIDE. Then, the others can ‘disagree & commit’. 


Meirav loves to checkmark ‘V’ - changing ‘impossible’ to ‘done’. That’s how she raised a series A of $28.5M within 8 weeks, and 6 months after - a Series B of $80M within 3 week, which all happened during COVID-19. A strong proof of her attitude & spirit is that her investors have already invested in Versatile for the 4th time, which conveys trust and confidence in the vision and team.


Meirav conveyed a strong message that “there is no better place to invest now than in a company in this area, aiming to disrupt the construction industry.”


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