VCs, Accelerators and Incubators Focused on Underrepresented Founders
May 1st , 2020
Venture capital has a diversity problem, this is a well telegraphed fact. Low representation of Black and Latinx VCs and decision makers leads to less money raised for underrepresented founders. We did some research, and have listed a number accelerators, incubators and early stage investors who are focused specifically on elevating more startups with diverse founders and teams. We will be adding to this list, and doing deeper profiles of these groups so stay tuned !
Founders Gym – Started by powerhouse entrepreneur Mandala Dixon, FG leads morning and evening cohorts of early stage founders through an online training program to help them learn tips and tricks of fundraising from an all-star team of seasoned Silicon Valley founders and investors.
Backstage Capital – Founded by visionary, Arlan Hamilton in 2015 (while she was homeless!), Backstage capital was built with the purpose of finding and supporting underestimated founders. The organization’s website says it all. “Less than 10% of all venture capital deals go to women, People of Color, and LGBTQ founders. Other VCs see this as a pipeline problem. We see it as the biggest opportunity in investment.”
Aside from investing in stellar companies, Backstage offers a three-month accelerator program that provides capital, amazing mentors and resources to take an early-stage company to the next level. Bonus points if you peep a copy of Arlan’s book, which is sure to be amazing
Digital unDivided – Digital unDivided is a unique accelerator program based in Newark and Atlanta focused on Black and Latina women. The accelerator program is a 9 month program built to guide entrepreneurs from idea to execution, culminating in a demo day.
Manos Accelerator – Manos Accelerator is a Silicon Valley Accelerator serving the Latinx community. Their website states “s a mentorship-driven accelerator program that provides “hands-on” education, business resources, infrastructure, capital, and guidance for promising Latino-led startup companies, moving them towards a fast track to success.’ Their diverse array of programs includes a virtual video-conference based accelerator program, a one-week scale up program, and a new online accelerator program which is launching soon. Manos aims to pay it forward, and cultivate more Latinx leaders and entrepreneurs in Silcon Valley. Sounds pretty great!
Vamos Ventures - Vamos Ventures is a venture capital fund that is exclusively focused on funding diverse founders. Vamos also boasts an Operating Partner program built to boost the pipeline of female VCs and allow talented women the opportunity to gain venture investing experience while working fulltime. What a unique and amazing opportunity!
Black and Latino Tech at Rutgers - BLT is a pre-accelerator program focused on Black and Latino entrepreneurs. BLT takes entrepreneurs at various levels of execution ( early stage and idea level ) and prepares founders to effectively raise seed and venture capital . The program includes classes and mentoring, culminating in a demo day attended by venture capitalists. Bonus points because there is a lot of cool tech brewing in Newark.
Ok ! Vamanos ! Let’s get to work!