So you want to democratize venture capital – TechCrunch


A venture capitalist once told me frankly that whenever you see the phrase “democratization” in technology marketing material, take it as a wake-up call. Democracy, in general, often comes with an ironic caveat: it disproportionately benefits white and male participants. Now you know me well enough to know that I wouldn’t start your Saturday with that dreary introduction normally, but I think this reality is why a new tool, championed by tech entrepreneurs Lolita and Josh Taub, could be activated. . to something really innovative.

The Taubs launched a GP-LP, or general partner and sponsor, matching tool to help under-represented fund managers access the capital they need to start their fund. The matchmaker connects those looking to raise funds (GP!) With check writers (LP!). The move follows their founder-investor matching tool, which to date has generated more than 1,000 IPOs which they say have resulted in 27 checks totaling nearly $ 4 million in total principal.

Yes, matching LPs to GPs is a relatively straightforward concept and technology. And it’s a relatively straightforward experience. But that couldn’t have happened five years ago, and certainly ten years ago. Zoom Investing has changed the way people meet and check out, and I think the GP-LP tool is a key data point on how emerging fund managers can bring option to their fundraising process. .

Speaking of fundraising:

The tool’s explicit focus on helping only under-represented people – which it defines as anyone who does not fit the classic Silicon Valley mold, such as women, LGBTQ + people, non-graduates. Ivy (or people from non-elite employers) and non-wealthy people – is a layer of differentiation from many other tools. Products like the AngelList Rolling Fund are great, but ongoing public fundraising still largely benefits those with networks to tap into in the first place – just take a quick scroll to see who has one so far.

Let me put it like this: We have come to a point where there are a lot of tools out there that help founders and investors leverage their community to get checks. What is lacking, however, are the tools that help people without community, network and underestimated access to these opportunities. Although LPs are still hesitant as emerging managers raise their second and third funds, this effort is a good step in the right direction. And I will follow it to see how it works.

It’s been a great week for Black and other underrepresented founders:

Then the rest of this newsletter will focus on disaster technology, Airbnb, and an S-1 health communications record. You can always find me on Twitter @nmasc_.

Disaster technology is at an inflection point

Image credits: Hiroshi watanabe (Opens in a new window) / Getty Images

Disaster technology, like startups that use data to fight wildfires or analyze brainwaves to analyze PTSD after a traumatic event, is passing a moment. Are you surprised? COVID-19 and the ongoing climate crisis have prompted entrepreneurs to create proactive solutions that tackle literal disaster. Our own Danny Crichton has spent 12,000 words mapping the landscape so you don’t have to.

Here’s what you need to know: The Equity team summed up those 12,000 words about disaster into a 20-minute episode focused on key takeaways and highlights. As Danny explains on the show, “Cataclysms are a growing industry.”

If you are more of a reader than a listener …

Next Airbnb trip

airbnb kicked out

Image credits: Getty Images

Since travel was first closed last March, all eyes have been on Airbnb, the globally recognized short-term travel and rental company. Almost a year ago, the company reported declining revenues and the loss of 1,900 jobs, or about 25% of its workforce. Now, as nomadic digital lifestyles and long-term travel return, it also has a growth story worth sharing.

Here’s what you need to know: Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky spoke with our own Jordan Crook to talk about how his company is preparing for a faster and more agile post-pandemic reality. Time will tell if Airbnb’s stance comes to fruition, but getting into the mind of one of the co-founders of a company crushed and then resurrected by this pandemic can give founders tactical advice on how to frame the conflict and the sequel.

Brian Chesky: I had no idea that a travel agency during a pandemic could be even crazier than starting a business based on strangers living together. I kind of feel like I’m now 39 out of 49. It was definitely the craziest year ever.

Our business initially fell 80% in eight weeks. I say it’s like driving a car. You can’t go 130 km / h, hit the brakes and expect nothing really bad to happen. Now imagine you’re going 80 km / h, hit the brakes, then rebuild the car while moving, and then try to speed up to go public, all on Zoom.

When the future of life merges with the future of work:

Around TC

If you haven’t heard it, TC Sessions: Mobility 2021 will take place on June 9. The one-day virtual event is filled with the best and brightest minds working or investing in the future of transportation. The file is filled with founders, investors and experts in micromobility, autonomous vehicles, electrification and air taxis.

Among the growing list of speakers is the Motional Chairman Karl Iagnemma and co-founder and CEO of Aurora Chris Urmson, which will join forces to talk about the technical problems that remain to be solved, the war for talents and the best economic models and applications of autonomous vehicles. Other guests include Zoox co-founder and CTO Jesse Levinson, community organizer, transport consultant and lawyer Tamika L. Butler, Co-founder and CEO of Remix Tiffany Chu and co-founder and CEO of Revel Frank reig. There is also the founder and CEO of Joby Aviation JoeBen Bevirt, investor and founder of LinkedIn Reid hoffman (whose special purpose acquisition company just merged with Joby) will talk about the future of flight – and PSPCs.

And to answer your next question, yes, you can still buy your tickets here.

Through the week

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