In this week’s UKTN Podcast episode, Priya Guha, venture partner at Merian Ventures, discusses the skills gap and the shortage of women in STEM roles, why tech companies shouldn’t overlook the arts, and how the early-stage gender funding gap is holding back UK growth.
Guha has been at Merian Ventures since 2019, where she invests in women-led innovation. She was previously a career diplomat, most recently as British Consul General to San Francisco where she was embedded in Silicon Valley.
“In the UK, and indeed in the US as well, you have an ongoing challenge that girls from a very early age are dropping out of the subjects that are really important for technology,” Guha tells the UKTN Podcast.
This, combined with the UK’s large gender funding gap, means “women are struggling from the get-go” and leads to less wealth being recycled into the economy, explains Guha.
Elsewhere on the show, Guha discusses the UK’s “untapped capital pool” and reveals what she wants to see from the next British government.
In addition to her current role at Merian, Guha holds non-executive director roles at UKRI and Digital Capital, along with advisory roles at Kheiron Medical Technologies and Gallos Technologies. In addition to these roles, she is a member of the investment governance board at Future Planet Capital, council member at Innovate UK and a NED at Reach PLC. In 2021, she was awarded an MBE for services to international trade and women in innovation.
This season of the UKTN Podcast is sponsored by HSBC Innovation Banking, which offers flexible banking solutions for startups, scaleups, growth businesses, investors and those working towards IPO.
Throughout the series, the UKTN Podcast will be speaking to some of the key movers and shakers from UK tech. We’ll learn growth strategies from both seasoned and up-and-coming founders, hear market sentiments from investors, and question policymakers on the decisions shaping technology businesses across the country.
New episodes of the UKTN Podcast are published every Tuesday morning. Sign up for our podcast newsletter to ensure you don’t miss an episode.