Our process for selecting, training and funding entrepreneurs begins by identifying a problem - and ends with a unique peer-review model for investing in the best solution.
Identifying a problem
Village Capital does not just seek the next best idea, invention, or business; rather, we seek innovators who are solving real global problems. Specifically, we focus on two major problem-solving areas: access to opportunity for underserved communities (through health, education, and financial inclusion ventures) and resource sustainability of the planet (through energy and agriculture ventures).
Albert Einstein once said, “If I had an hour to solve a problem I'd spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem and 5 minutes thinking about solutions.” Before we begin a program, we develop a “problem statement” that identifies an existing problem in underserved communities. Recent programs have revolved around the unbanked population in India, and the “health-wealth” gap in the United States.
Selecting the best entrepreneurs
Next, we select groups of 10-12 entrepreneurs and put them through our award-winning curriculum to help them scale their business and become investment-ready.
Each program provides entrepreneurs with the tools they need to grow a successful business—training in team management, customer discovery, building a solid financial plan, and preparing to take on investment — as well as the opportunity to build relationships with mentors, customers, stakeholders, and investors.
Our method of selecting investments is unique: we put the power of investment in the hands of our entrepreneurs.
At the end of each program, the entrepreneurs assess each other in an open and transparent process. The two highest-ranked ventures receive seed capital from VilCap Investments and co-investors. In 2013, this peer-selected investment model won the Harvard Business Review/McKinsey M-Prize for innovation.