Startups from overlooked regions and with diverse founders struggle to secure investment funding. Nearly 80% of investments are concentrated to three areas – Silicon Valley, Boston and New York. Moreover, women and minorities received less than 10% and 1% of venture capital funding respectively. This can be attributed to investment “blind spots” that stifle innovation in the places, people, and industries with biggest potential for impact.
In a given ecosystem, angel investors are generally willing to take risks on very early businesses and founders. A number of angel investors source companies through their respective angel groups, online searches and warm leads. Village Capital will expose local investors to overlooked companies right in their backyard and empower entrepreneur support organizations in these cities to equip these companies with the tools needed to excel. This will allow startups to grow and thrive where they are and discover the pathway that leads to exponential scale, growth and venture capital funding.
Village Capital Pathways will support and scale a cohort of early-stage companies that are based in four respective cities – DC, Philadelphia, Chicago and Atlanta. This will happen in a number of ways:
Exposure to our Venture Investment Readiness Awareness Level (VIRAL) Curriculum
Selected companies will be supported by our VIRAL curriculum, where they will learn how to strategically de-risk their businesses, through milestones, in order to begin validating their ventures with investors to best position them to obtain the capital they need most. Over the course three months, we will support selected startups with tailored engagements with potential strategic partners and investors, and deep collaboration within the cohort.
Facilitate Connections to Angel Investors and local Entrepreneur Support Organizations
Startups often rely on friends, families and angel investors as their first source of capital to scale high growth companies. We will facilitate these relationships through:
- Pre-committed angel investors and ecosystem allies who are looking to partner with selected companies
- Formal and informal interactions with these stakeholders through one on one meetings, business development sessions and an investor dinner where entrepreneurs will be able to highlight their milestone achievements
- Startup Heat Map, including a roadmap for monetary and in-kind resources in each city for every funding level
We will also provide resources for building your business including:
- Amazon Web Services: 2 years of AWS credits (up to $5000)
- Kiva Zip: Automatically qualify for a 10,000 interest-free Kiva Zip Loan
- Hubspot for Startups: 90% scholarship on all paid HubSpot software for 12 months
- Connections and expert advice from UBS executives
We are currently recruiting high-growth businesses with diverse founders in Philadelphia, Chicago and Atlanta. Eligible enterprises must be tech-enabled either pre-seed or seed stage ventures with an established Minimum Viable Product (MVP), and have less than $500,000 in revenue or raised funding.
The deadlines to apply are below:
Philadelphia – 11/17
Chicago – 12/22
Atlanta – 1/5
Questions? E-mail Ebony Pope at firstname.lastname@example.org.