Podcast: Hard Truths by Vertex | Episode 6 - Truths About Being a Female Leader in the Trillion Dollar Climate Tech Market, with Natalia Rialucky and Puiyan Leung

Elise TAN | 15 Mar 2023

In conjunction with International Women’s Day, we bring you Episode 6 of our Hard Truths by Vertex Podcast.

Natalia Rialucky (Ria) Marsudi is a mother of two and works full-time connecting carbon projects and businesses looking to reduce their carbon footprint, as the founder and CEO of Fairatmos. Puiyan Leung is also a mother of two, and leads deals across Southeast Asia and India as a Partner at Vertex Ventures SEA&I. How do they find the balance between being change leaders at work, and the demands of motherhood? How do they navigate the nascent but developing Southeast Asian carbon markets? And what are the Hard Truths they’ve learned in doing these?

At Vertex Ventures SEA&I, as you know, we stand for gender neutrality and strongly believe in partnering with impressive talents to cocreate champions, regardless of gender. We are proud to share that in our Fund 4, 40% has been invested into female-led companies. And in the region, we invested into the most number of female leaders of any early stage fund.

Our Guests

Natalia Rialucky is the Founder & CEO of Fairatmos, a platform that finds, verifies, and connects carbon projects with businesses looking to reduce their carbon footprint. Prior to this, she was Chief Strategy and Social Impact Officer at TaniHub. She was the Head of Social Impact at the Boston Consulting Group before Tanihub. She has over ten years of experience in agri-tech, impact investing, growth capital, management consulting, and start-ups in South East Asia and the Asia Pacific region at leading firms such as BCG, KKR, TaniHub, Grab, Xendit, and 01VC.She earned her bachelor's degree in International Relations and Affairs from the University of Indonesia and her MBAs from the University of California, Berkeley, and INSEAD.

Puiyan Leung is Partner, Investments at Vertex. She joined Vertex Ventures SEA & India in 2020 and focuses on opportunities in Southeast Asia. Pui Yan previously worked as a Director of Investments and Operations at Singtel Innov8, the corporate venture arm of Singtel. Prior to that, she held a variety of operational roles, including serving as Singtel's Indonesia-based lead in representing Singtel's digital portfolio's local market development and expansion interests. Pui Yan earned a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering from the National University of Singapore (NUS). She joined the Kauffman Fellows Program in 2019, which focuses on innovation leadership and venture capital for US and global investors.

In This Episode

(01:53) About FairAtmos

(04:53) First impressions between Vertex and FairAtmos

(07:53) Vertex’ investment thesis for FairAtmos

(10:02) State of Carbon markets in SEA

(11:15) How FairAtmos is trying to be an early mover in SEA Climate Tech

(14:11) Hard Truths about category creation in Climate tech

(16:25) Impact beyond climate

(17:30) It’s not just about money

(21:22) Hard truths about being a mom investor and entrepreneur

(25:03) Vertex’ views on climate tech investments

(27:05) FairAtmos business model

(28:15) Advice for female founders

(33:22) How their childhood shaped them

Vertex Ventures SEA&I is proud to be associated with over 20 female-founded startups across Southeast Asia and India and this episode is part of our special series for International Women’s Day 2023. Throughout March we will feature four accomplished female business leaders, along with their Vertex investors - so do subscribe to our show and discover what it takes for women leaders to succeed in male-dominated spaces.


Notes and Full Transcript for Episode 6 here.

Listen on Apple, Spotify and Google.

Or watch our other episodes here on YouTube.

If you like what you hear please follow or subscribe to the show so you don’t miss out on any of our upcoming discussions.

Your Host

Elise Tan is the Director of Communications and Community at Vertex Ventures Southeast Asia and India. Prior to joining Vertex, she has had extensive experience in investor relations and partnership at global venture funds and accelerators with more than $100m in AUM. Elise also currently runs a Southeast Asia-based startup community of nearly 800 entrepreneurs called the Asia Startup network and actively supports their startup journey through panels, meet-ups, and mentoring programs.

Vertex Ventures Southeast Asia & India is a pioneer in investing in tech start-ups in this region and has helped to build a number of unicorns. In this podcast, we seek to share and uncover the Hard Truth - raw, unfiltered insights and venture capital knowledge from across Southeast Asia and India. Tune in to learn from leading founders, innovators, venture capitalists, and industry experts in the region and to gain industry insights from those in the know.

If you like what you hear, please click follow or subscribe and share it with entrepreneurs or investors in your circle so we can all grow, succeed and build the future of SEA and India together.

This podcast is powered by CrazyTok: They help experts become influencers.

Find them on their Website, LinkedIn or Instagram

Find and follow us for new Podcast episodes on the other platforms:

Follow us to get notified whenever new episodes are shared.

For the latest news on Vertex Ventures SE Asia and India and our portfolio companies, follow us on Linkedin or subscribe to our monthly newsletter.

Vertex Ventures Southeast Asia and India is part of the global Vertex Ventures network of funds.

In addition to Southeast Asia and India, the Vertex Global Network is comprised of affiliates in Silicon Valley, China and Israel. This provides a unique platform for our portfolio companies to realize their full potential by leveraging the combined experience and resources of our extensive network of global partners.

250 North Bridge Road, #09-01

Raffles City Tower,

Singapore 179101

+65 6828 8088

© 2022 by Vertex. All rights reserved. Legal