Dutch Student Investment Fund is a venture capital fund managed by students from the University of Twente and Saxion University of Applied Sciences. It was established in 2016 as the first student-run European venture capital fund. DSIF invests in innovative startups created by bachelor, master students, PhDs, or recent graduates and help young student entrepreneurs turn their great ideas into real startups.
While DSIF is structured as a venture capital fund, its primary goal is not to make the most significant return on investment but rather to support student entrepreneurs as much as possible. With capital provision, the fund also connects students with professional parties, gives advice, helps to look for follow-up investments, and way more. DSIF believes that young entrepreneurs should have access to all the means necessary to turn their great ideas into real startups that could potentially benefit society.
DSIF offers you a unique opportunity to expand your horizons in the domain of startup investing and entrepreneurship. The positions within the fund are flexible and can be part-time (board of directors) or project-based (DSIF ambassadors). We provide you with a solid network of partners that can be a valuable connection and training about venture capital. You will also get the chance to work on teamwork, organisational skills, time-management, communication…the options are limitless. At the end of the day, your time at DSIF is what you make of it!
DSIF is all about diversity and openness. That is why students from the University of Twente and Saxion University of Applied Science from different backgrounds, ethnicities, gender and studies are welcome to apply. That way, we get a dynamic and multi-disciplinary team to lead DSIF with creativity and expertise. We do not ask for previous affiliation or experience in finance, investment and venture capital. Any previous knowledge in this area is, of course, great. But for now, passion and willingness to learn will do!
Being the Brand Director at DSIF means maintaining social presence and building brand awareness. With online/offline marketing, your goal will be to reach the University of Twente and Saxion University of Applied Science entrepreneurial students.
You will learn social media marketing, content marketing for our blog section and website, the basics of analytics and SEO, and WordPress functionalities. When the investment happens, you will write a killer press release to create a media buzz. In this role, you will have a chance to work with the creative side, such as designing content, as well as with the analytical side, such as SEO and analytics. Sounds like quite some work? No worries! You will have a team of brand ambassadors that you will be in charge of and with whom you will create that social presence.
For offline marketing, you will make sure that people on campus can recognise DSIF. Thus, you will create branded clothing and promotion that would establish brand awareness. Apart from that, together with the network director, you will work on the DSIF event organisation.
At DSIF, we believe in diversity and inclusion. As a brand director, you will have to ensure inclusive and diverse marketing and communications. This role requires a strategic mindset, self-motivation, creativity, analytical skills and leadership skills. If you love marketing and is obsessed with growth, come and join us, you will learn more than you expect!
The Network Director at DSIF is responsible for external communication, event organisation and community (ambassador) management. This position’s primary goals are to create new partnership, scout student startups, stimulate entrepreneurship through events, and maintain a diverse and inclusive DSIF community.
For external communication, you will reach out to potential partners with whom DSIF could collaborate. Next to that, you will be the contact person between the DSIF and the University of Twente, Saxion University of Applied Science, from where we scout startups.
Event organisation is vital for entrepreneurial growth in the Twente region. So, together with the brand director, you will work on the webinar, pitch contest and lecture organisation. Also, you will attend many events where you will have to network with potential startups and partners.
The network director is also a community director, meaning you will maintain a friendly atmosphere between the ambassadors, organise a workshop about VC and some fun gatherings! For this role, you will be responsible for the recruitment period planning. So, if you are ready to attend and organise exciting events, plan and create a diverse atmosphere within DSIF, then take this challenge and become the next network director of DSIF!
The Deal-flow Director is the most critical person when it comes to investment procedure. This role will require you to oversee and be the first contact person between the DSIF and potential startup investments. As well as to assist the startups throughout the DSIF investment process.
In this role, you will structure, analyse and report on the findings to the board about the incoming deals in the deal-flow funnel. If there is potential in a startup, the deal-flow director will lead the investment process, in which due diligence, agreement on the term sheet and deal-making will be upon.
The deal-flow director should have analytical skills, critical thinking and be interested in entrepreneurship. If you are interested in this role, you will learn many insights about venture capital, specifically what venture capitals actually expect from startups.
The Portfolio Director is responsible for managing startups in the DSIF portfolio. By that, we mean that you will oversee their development, challenges and needs. From here, you will look for solutions on how to support them, this might include looking for subsidies or follow-up investments.
By checking on the portfolio startups, you will document their progress and connect the startup with the experts from our network. As a portfolio director, your goal is to find the best ways to add value and support the growth of our portfolio startups as much as possible.
If you want to pursue this role, you have to be an open-minded, curious and flexible person, who is willing to maintain a good relationship between portfolio startups and DSIF and support them as much as possible.
The DSIF Ambassador is a project-based position in our fund. Depending on your interest, you will have the possibility to do projects related to marketing, network, finance, deal-flow and portfolio. For example, some of the tasks you might do include scouting for high-potential student startups, investment analysis, organisation and participation in events, blogging, designing, connecting and cooperating with organisations in Twente’s entrepreneurial ecosystem and beyond. DSIF gives you all the freedom to turn creative ideas into new projects and help grow the fund further.
From the blog “DSIF Ambassadors: Is It Worth Joining?” by Sybe Westerhof
Types of DSIF ambassadors
Ambassadors of the fund focus on several projects related to DSIF’s key activities. There are five categories in total:
The marketing team of DSIF is responsible for social media presence, website maintenance, blogging, designing. It is the creative side of DSIF, where ambassadors will work on brand awareness. If you want to enhance your creative side, join and contribute as a writer, designer, photographer, videographer or data analyst. At DSIF, we create data-driven creative content.
Becoming a part of the network team means that you will actively scout new possibilities to expand the organisation. That includes looking for new partners to collaborate with, where you, as an ambassador, will practice communication skills with that! Also, the network team is responsible for event organisation, either internal training or external events for which you will be working on as well.
Finance is a vital part of the organisation. Being the finance ambassador, you will add value by contributing to both the internal management of DSIF’s finances and external by looking for financial subsidies to our fund and searching for new shareholders.
Looking from a broader perspective, deal-flow is about overseeing startups that either contact us directly or apply for funding through the website. In short, it is about monitoring startups that come to the deal-flow funnel, assessing them and if we see a potential, then assisting through the DSIF investment process. As a part of a deal-flow team, you, as an ambassador, will assist startups in the investment procedure, startup monitoring and new one scouting.
The portfolio team manages the current DSIF startup portfolio, by keeping in touch with them and looking for their follow-up investments and subsidies. The fund has provided funding for startups such as LoCoMogo and Clairify. As an ambassador, you will contribute to the success of our portfolio startups by actively looking for startup subsidies, follow-up investments, and other activities contributing to the growth of portfolio startups.
There are a few differences between the two positions. The director at DSIF is an investor who together with other directors’ analyzes, discusses and decides on the investments. In comparison, an ambassador does not have a say when it comes to decisions on the investments. Another difference is that a particular director, for example, a deal-flow director is responsible for its group of ambassadors. Ambassadors help the director with different projects, whether it is event organisation or marketing campaign. It is essential to mention that ambassadors have a lot of freedom to share their ideas and implement them here at DSIF. Moreover, a director position is a part-time job at DSIF, and an ambassador position takes around 5h per week. In general, both positions are full of challenges and fun, it is up to you to choose which one suits you better!
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