In July of 2018, Lightspeed Venture capital firm made headlines after the firm raised $1.8 billion in new funds to invest in startups. The company has been recognized as one of the fastest growing venture firms in Silicon Valley, and within the last month, the firm has added six new staff, including Stanford MBA graduate Ashley Brasier, who brings deep consumer intelligence and experience to the team.
Ashley joins Lightspeed as a member of the consumer investing team, taking on the task of working closely with early-stage companies to develop their growth strategy. Before joining the Lightspeed team, Ashley earned her Bachelor of Arts in Visual and Media Studies from Duke University. Her education, both at Duke and while studying abroad in Copenhagen, nurtured her interest in consumer businesses. Therefore, following graduation, Ashley joined Bain & Company, a global management consulting firm, where she worked primarily with retail companies. After two years, Ashley was promoted to Senior Associate Consultant. Ashley held that position for a year until she decided to make her transition to Silicon Valley, and was hired as Category Manager at a local services start-up based in San Francisco called Thumbtack. As manager at this on-demand services marketplace, she oversaw their events and weddings categories which generated tens of millions for the company while she was employed. This experience provided her access to her first startup and exposed her to the world of venture capital. Her interest peaked to the point where she decided to take her education and career one step further and enrolled at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business.
While at Stanford, Ashley wanted to find an opportunity that would allow her to apply her education to real life scenarios. With this ambition, Ashley found herself back in the consulting world while at Stanford. She started first consulting with her previous employer, Thumbtack, then transitioned into working with start-up companies independently through referrals. Her experience as a consultant provided her with the knowledge and understanding that is well suited for her position at Lightspeed, in which she is responsible for advising portfolio companies. Working with a diverse set of companies, Ashley gained an in-depth understanding of the multiple facets that can interfere with a company’s growth and development. Primarily, Ashley learned from the first-hand experience that each company needs independent attention. Through constructive analysis, Ashley examines each company’s business plan, evaluating it to address pending concerns. This skill is one that Ashley is applying in her current role – spending the time to understand the user behavior driving portfolio companies’ businesses. This helps her to give advice pertaining to each company’s specific growth plans, doubling down on what’s working.
Ashley Lightspeed: Getting to the Top
As a child, Ashley thought that she wanted to become an architect and follow in the footsteps of her father. Through the years though she learned that her true desire was in building business ideas rather than constructing buildings. However, the work ethic she learned from a young age has allowed her to grow into an influential partner at Lightspeed.
One of the essential skills that Ashley displays is her dedication to building connections with others. To this day she can be counted on as someone who is dedicated to continuing communication with all individuals in her life, not just the ones that will allow her career to flourish. This aspect of her personality has played a key role in her ability to succeed in her career.
Ashley, Lightspeed, the Future
Until the recent influx of new hires at Lightspeed Venture Partners, the firm only had two women on staff. Recently, however, the number of female partners has risen substantially. This shift in dynamics is bringing new life to the company’s future, and Ashley Brasier is at the forefront of this transformation. She is innovative, creative, and resilient. Ashley spends her days meeting with startups in the consumer space and has the ability to help Lightspeed Venture Partners to grow exponentially. Watch out for upcoming news related to Ms. Brasier to see what the future holds for innovative businesses and technology.