Ada Ventures closes a $34M fund for overlooked founders

Francesca (Check) Warner writes:

The mission of the fund is to open access to venture capital funding for people building businesses serving customers who are underserved by venture-backed companies, products and services. These ‘overlooked’ people include women, black, Asian and other founders from minority ethnic groups in the UK, the over 50s population, founders from lower socio-economic backgrounds or who are economically marginalised, LGBTQ+, parents, people who don’t live in London, people who are neurodiverse or who have disabilities and more.
During the fundraise we were told “women can’t make money”, “European tech doesn’t have a diversity problem” that it is “a meritocracy where the best people get funded” and that “this fund will never be commercially viable”, that it was “philanthropic”. At times it felt impossible.

This story is uplifting because, while it is “normative” and “derisked” individuals raising the fund, they’re interested in the overlooked.

There are so many inequities in so many parts of society that in some ways it feels arbitrary to focus on venture capital. However, entrepreneurship is a powerful force for social change and the financial system that drives entrepreneurship is so unfair at the moment, that it feels as good a place as any.
If you have ideas for work we could be doing, or organisations to partner with, we’d love to know.
Please check out Ada Ventures and non-profit Diversity VC for more information.

If you’re a founder and you think it’s impossible to raise funds, you could do worse than have a conversation with Ada.

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