Creative Industry

A list of all the episodes you will find in the So This Is My Why podcast that features people working in the creative industry, including show notes, links and other episodes that you might find interesting. Past interviewees include artists, dancers, stunt actresses, photographers, writers and more.

Francine Ballard - BFF founding member, founder of Metagolden Web3 phygital luxury high fashion

Ep 98: From Devil Wears Prada to Web3 High Fashion?! | Francine Ballard (Founder, Metagolden)

Francine Ballard is the Houston-based founder of Metagolden, a modern brand for a modern consumer who values physical and digital status equally. A web3 emporium showcasing the finest phygital (physical and digital assets sold together) collectibles by way of collaborations between luxury labels, artists and digital influencers/creators.

Ballard worked in fashion publishing for many years at Time Inc (InStyle), Conde Nast (Lucky magazine) and most recently as style editor at PaperCity magazine working with fashion and jewelry brands Hermès, Gucci, Fendi, Dolce & Gabbana, Cartier among others before transitioning to the technology space.

An avid crypto investor, in 2021 she entered the blockchain space with a line of fine, 18k gold jewelry tied to NFTs. Since then, the company has expanded via partnerships with THEORY, Kwiat Diamonds, Decentraland, Moda Operandi and Fred Segal, successful NFT projects with artists Ashley Longshore, Jonathan Seliger and editorial features in ELLE and Architectural Digest.

Her next collection- HW3 (House of Web3) will be a community-owned, operated and financed fashion house with the best and brightest from both worlds (Web3 and IRL) rooted in forward thinking operatives of ideation, collaboration and innovation. As one of the first female-led blockchain brands and a founding member of the BFF, along with Gwyneth Paltrow, Kate Hudson, Paris Hilton and founders Brit Morin and Jaime Schmidt, Ballard has become a web3 thought leader and expert, paving the way for women and female-led projects in the space.

Mai Akiyoshi - CEO & Co-Founder, Curious Addys' Trading Club

Ep 81: Building a cute, educational & interactive NFT platform for Web3 beginners | Mai Akiyoshi (CEO & Co-Founder, Curious Addys’ Trading Club)

Mai is CEO of Curious Addys, a Web3 startup building the best educational platform and community for newcomers to Web3. She is building ember.help, a platform where anyone can ask questions on Web3 and get guaranteed answers from experts. Previously, Mai was a senior software engineer at Gusto and VP of marketing at Logbar, a Japanese startup where she co-created the world’s first handheld offline translation device, ili.

Lim Ee Ling - Executive Director of Global Programs, 500 Global + Co-Founder of Smarter Me & Young Leaders Summit Asia

Ep 80: Ee Ling Lim | Executive Director of Global Programs, 500 Global & Co-Founder of Smarter Me + Young Leaders Summit Asia

e Ling Lim leads the Global Programs team at 500 Global, overseeing the strategic development and implementation of programs for 500’s network of startups all over the world. In her role, she also advises governments, corporations, and foundations in designing and developing startup ecosystems and innovation programs. Prior to 500 Global, Ee Ling was an Investment Banker with Bank of America Merrill Lynch and CIMB Investment Bank, executing M&A, equity and debt capital market transactions in Southeast Asia.

Ee Ling is also the Co-Founder and CEO of Smarter Me, a K-12 edutech startup headquartered in Singapore, that equips primary and secondary school students with the skillset, mindset, and heartset to define their own success and happiness in the future. Through digital technology and entrepreneurship education, students develop mastery in problem-solving, critical-thinking, collaboration, and creativity. She also hosts Young Founders Summit Asia, a leading startup program in Asia that provides aspiring teenage founders with workshops and mentorship to launch impact-based startups.

Nicole Quinn - General Partner, Lightspeed Venture Partner & Celebrity Whisperer - investor of Gwyneth Paltrow (Goop), The Honest Company (Jessica Alba), Lady Gaga (Haus Laboratories), Sophia Amoruso (Girlboss), Rothy's, Calm, Cameo, Lunchclub

Ep 79: Celebrity Whisperer & Investor of Lady Gaga, Gwyneth Paltrow, Sophia Amoruso etc. | Nicole Quinn (General Partner, Lightspeed Venture Partners)

Nicole Quinn is a General Partner at Lightspeed Venture Partners, where she focuses on consumer and FinTech investing. Consumer behavior, founder insights, and company brand are core in Nicole’s mind. Nicknamed the “Celebrity Whisperer”, she has led the Series A in Cameo and Lady Gaga’s Haus Labs and seed rounds in Girlboss, Illumix and Sagely. She also invested in the Series B in Calm and Series C in Goop. Earlier, she sourced Rothy’s and Zola.

Prior to joining Lightspeed, Nicole had her own startup in the wearables space and worked at the European FinTech startup Nutmeg. Earlier in her career she was at Morgan Stanley where she worked on the IPOs for Facebook, Pandora, Groupon and Ocado.

Nicole has been featured in The Wall Street Journal’s VC Women to Watch and Marie Claire New Guard Awards. She is on Lightspeed’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee and an advocate for change around diversity.

Nicole received a B.A. in Economics and Math from York, England and an MBA from Stanford.

Debbie Soon - Co-Founder, HUG NFT Accelerator & curate-to-earn platform HUGhub, hedgeHUG; Chief of Staff at ONE Championship to Chatri Sityodtong

Ep 78: Creating a Web3 Accelerator & Curate-to-Earn Platform with Randi Zuckerberg | Debbie Soon (Co-Founder, HUG & former VP of ONE Championship)

Debbie Soon is the co-founder of HUG alongside Randi Zuckerberg. HUG is a Web3 platform that supports creators and collectors through our community and growth initiatives: HUGhub (curate-to-earn discovery platform for NFTs), groupHUG (NFT growth accelerator), and hedgeHUG (early stage pre-mint program).

Lily Wu is currently the Startup Partner Lead, SEA at Stripe and co-founder of WOW Pixies, the first DAO to invest in the women-led web3 ecosystem.

Ep 77: Founding Two 7-figure Businesses & Launching the First Venture DAO for Women | Lily Wu (Startup Partner Lead, SEA & Co-Founder, WOW Pixies NFT)

Lily Wu is currently the Startup Partner Lead, SEA at Stripe and co-founder of WOW Pixies, the first DAO to invest in the women-led web3 ecosystem. Previously, she was immersed in the startup world where she bootstrapped two 7-figure businesses from the ground up and was the Head of Programs for NewCampus, a Series A edutech startup based in Singapore. She is the founding ambassador of Future Females Singapore, a global organisation dedicated to helping female entrepreneurs get the resources and connections. Fun fact, she is also an illustrator, published author and has a black belt in Japanese martial arts, Taido.