When it comes to knowing what’s right and wrong when setting up a business, although not a seasoned professional I have seen at first hand the quite staggering power of network, experienced the importance of peer to peer mentorship, advice and guidance and acknowledge the necessity to achieve balance in life. Nail the three and I believe you will have the foundations of success at your finger tips.
There are gzillions of networks, communities, forums and meet ups already in existence. I am not attempting to emulate their success but carve my own path to create something that is unique, exclusive (but not elitist), fun and world class – to attract the extraordinary talent of our city and further afield, to allow them to come together, to innovate, prosper, succeed & thrive.
There will be a full calendar of events – of every kind: the useful, the simple, the unique, the extreme, the therapeutic, the exotic – from London to New York & Europe in 2017, and onwards to 2018, the world is our oyster – all infused with fun, a sense of adventure and a chance to share the trials, tribulations, highs and lows of start up business, with fellow founders. I will gain access for my members to events around the globe that would otherwise be impossible to attend. There are exclusive perks and partnerships a plenty – I will be the eyes for my members so they are the first to know of the latest and hottest key events and news from the start up industry.
I am also aiming to create a culture of reciprocal peer to peer mentorship within the membership and build an external group to feed into and boost the growth of members’ start ups. AGORA will initially be predominantly London based but I have aspirations to take the club abroad by the end of 2017. Members from around the globe are welcome!
Meet The Founder
I am Emma Watkins, the Founder of Agora. My career began at systematic Investment Manager, Winton Capital Management, where I developed and ran the Charity, Sponsorship, Brand and Events Department. After 5 years, I moved on to become Operations Director at Fifty Media, a technology company focused on large scale analysis of social media data to redefine how brands fundamentally understand and engage their customers.
It was during my time at Fifty, that I founded Start Ups & Vino (the precursor to Agora) – entirely by accident!
Alongside, I also qualified as a yoga alliance teacher going on to specialise in trauma informed and adaptive yoga, supporting and driving the mission of Mind Body Solutions and Adaptive Yoga UK.
My philanthropic activity extends to being a Trustee of Inner Voices, a musical charity aiming to further the musical abilities and opportunities of London comprehensive students, an ambassador for Afrikids, a child rights organization working in northern Ghana and a liveryman at Merchant Taylors, one of the great twelve livery companies of the city of London.