September 4, 2022

The mystery of the vanishing investor

LinkedIn influencers, a non-existent £10m fund and a coffee table book? We chat through our latest Sifted investigation on the pod

Imagine you're a female founder and you've been promised investment. But then the investor just... vanishes.

This week on the Sifted Podcast, we dive into the mystery of a mysterious £10m fund called Athena Ventures. It was fronted by a self-described LinkedIn influencer and paid for (supposedly) by a consultant who tried to prove his trustworthiness by sending Sifted a photo of a limited-edition coffee table book about himself.

Our deputy editor Eleanor Warnock and resident super-snooper Freya Pratty guide us through the twists and turns of this bizarre tale.


But before that we talk about news that should have surprised us, but didn't. Buy now, pay later scaleup Klarna — once Europe’s most valuable tech company — saw its losses more than triple this year.

We also discuss Berlin-based startup topi, which has raised $45m to grow its hardware-as-a-service business, and London-based Neurofenix, which has raised $7m to develop a product that helps stroke patients recover better.

Find out on the Sifted Podcast. Listen here.