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OpenseedVC has reached the first close of its $10 million fund for operator-led startups in Africa and Europe. Founded by former Octopus Ventures and Oxford Seed Fund investor Maria Rotilu, OpenseedVC is a new solo General Partner (GP) that aims to be the first check for startups. OpenSeedVC: Filling a Crucial Funding Gap According to Sifted, Rotilu is Europe’s first Black solo GP and one of the first female solo GPs in the region.  Rotilu’s strategy with OpenseedVC is to back startups even earlier than the pre-seed stage, at a

Angeles Ventures, a Latine and woman-led early-stage VC fund, has announced an equity investment from Bank of America. This investment aims to accelerate Angeles Ventures’ mission to find, fund, and grow Latine ventures across the United States. Addressing the Funding Gap for Latine Entrepreneurs Even though Latine Americans make up over 20% of the U.S. population and are the most entrepreneurial group in the country, they receive less than 2% of venture capital funding.  Angeles Ventures aims to change this by focusing on tech-enabled B2B and B2C startups at the

Terri Burns, 26, the youngest partner in GV’s history and its first Black female partner, is launching her firm, Type Capital, according to Fortune. Breaking the Heat Cycle During her time at GV, formerly Google Ventures, Burns witnessed a recurrent issue within VC funding strategies: the reliance on “heat” from other investors before committing to a deal. “A lot of investors are driven by heat, versus being driven by true innovation,” she told Fortune. “[Founders are] talking to amazing investors, they’re getting some interest, but no one’s really willing to take the leap

Audible has recently welcomed four new minority-owned businesses into its Newark, NJ-based Business Attraction Program.  The initiative, launched in August 2023, aims to bolster the local economy by supporting startups through financial backing and expert mentorship.  Empowering Diverse Founders The focus on minority-owned companies, especially those led by Black women, comes at an important time.  Nationally, Black-owned businesses receive one percent of venture funding.  Audible’s program seeks to change this disparity by offering each company up to substantial non-dilutive grants of $250,000.  These funds are allocated for office space, relocation, and local

Reddit Co-Founder Alexis Ohanian took to X, formerly Twitter, to thank Snoop Dogg for being one of the platform’s earliest investors during its spin-out and turnaround. Reddit Reddit, a social media platform and online community, ranks among the top 20 most visited sites worldwide and went public in March 2024. American internet entrepreneur and investor Ohanian is best known as the platform’s former executive chairman and co-founder, along with Steff Huffman and Aaron Swartz. He is also the husband of tennis legend and venture capitalist Serena Williams. Huffman and Ohanian began building Reddit for fun while roomates

Gran Coramino Tequila, the premium tequila brand co-founded by Kevin Hart and Juan Domingo Beckmann, has disbursed over $1 million in grants to Black and Latine entrepreneurs across the United States to date. The Coramino Fund Since its inception in 2022, Gran Coramino has dedicated a portion of its sales to the betterment of underrepresented business owners, committing $1 from every bottle sold to this cause.  The Coramino Fund, established in partnership with the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), has now dispersed over $1 million in grants. This funding has reached over 100

Verod-Kepple Africa Ventures (VKAV) has announced the closure of its first fund at $60 million.  A Pan-African Vision with Global Backing VKAV is a collaborative effort between West African private equity firm Verod Capital Management and Tokyo-based venture capital firm Kepple Africa Ventures. Notably, the fund includes backing from Japanese powerhouses such as SBI Holdings, Toyota Tsusho Corporation, and Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank. Nigeria’s SCM Capital and other institutional investors from Japan, including Taiyo Holdings also contributed. VKAV’s investment strategy focuses on digital infrastructure builders, efficiency solvers, and market creators.

In the first quarter (Q1) of 2024, Africa’s startup scene saw another year-on-year and quarter-on-quarter dip in investments – with a notable exception in the mobility and fintech sectors. A drop in funding According to Africa: The Big Deal, Q1 saw $466 million raised through $100k+ deals by 121 startups (excluding exits). This is a 27% decrease from the previous quarter and only half of the amount raised at the same time last year. Techpoint Africa’s analysis of data from Intelpoint notes a 62% drop in African tech startup funding compared

According to Reuters, Bank of America (BoA) has announced an investment in Impact X Capital Partners’ IX Global I fund. The initiative aims to nurture underrepresented innovators, particularly women and founders of color, in sectors like digital technology. Impact X Capital Partners IX Global I Fund Impact X Capital Partners, established in 2019 and headquartered in London, blends financial returns with social impact.  The venture capital firm is dedicated to addressing the disparity in capital access for diverse UK and European entrepreneurs. Impact X has several notable founding members, such as Ursula Burns, former CEO

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