Entrepreneur, Board Director| Founder- Something New



Lessons Learned from Founding Three Companies and Investing in 87 Startups





Vanessa has over 23 years of experience and a proven track record of value creation as a serial founder, operator, strategist, and investor across SAP, Trigger Media and McKinsey. She is the founder and CEO of Sugarwork, a B2B SaaS company facilitating flexible, part-time arrangements for experienced employees and empowering employers to maintain the knowledge, skills, and relationships that drive their businesses. She was most recently Vice President of SAP.iO, SAP’s early-stage venture arm, where she oversaw SAP.iO’s North American Foundries in New York and San Francisco, including programs devoted to women and diverse-led B2B enterprise tech companies, and recruited and accelerated 85+ enterprise software startups. Prior to SAP, Vanessa was Chief Operating Officer at Trigger Media Group, a $22MM digital media incubator. 

She co-founded Trigger’s portfolio companies: InsideHook (digital media company & men’s lifestyle brand) and Fevo (SaaS technology for group experiences at live events). She began her career at McKinsey & Company and was an Associate Partner in the Firm’s Media and Entertainment Practice, based in Amsterdam, London and New York.

Vanessa currently serves as a Non-Executive director of Appen Ltd. (ASX: APX) and Goodman (ASX: GMG). She is also a board observer of Fevo and is an advisor or investor in start-ups including Bounce Exchange (Wunderkind), Crave Global, Grata Data, GroundSignal, Kable AI and Narrativ.

Vanessa graduated magna cum laude with an AB in psychology from Harvard University and cum laude with a JD from Harvard Law School. She was a Fulbright Scholar at Universiteit Utrecht in the Netherlands where she conducted independent research on the International War Crimes Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia and the International Court
of Justice. She serves as Past President Director of the Harvard Alumni Association (was President from July 2021 – June 2022) 

23 September | 7:50 PM- 8:40 PM



Living a life of appreciation, awareness, and acceptance gives meaning to life and makes it worthwhile. In this session, Vanessa Liu will share her entrepreneurial journey and her takeaways on appreciation, awareness, and acceptance.