Without any action, it will be virtually impossible to close the gap. The accelerated plan is only attainable if we act now. Our research suggests that three targeted actions can help achieve parity:
Support Black founders in pre-series stages
This means increasing visibility, equality and awareness of Black founders. There is a need to elevate the Black founder pipeline and increase diversity amongst venture capital decision makers. Creating targeted investments will also encourage companies to direct investments to Black founders in areas they care about.
Support Black founders throughout funding stages (A through D+)
Our research shows only 5 Black founders have progressed to Series D+ from 2016 to 2020. A targeted strategy can equalize funding at each stage, enhance business capacity of Black founders, provide education, network opportunities and mentoring, and expand the source of capital.
Engage corporate venture capital decision makers
A truly diverse venture capital ecosystem can yield financial gain for Black founders and benefits, and spillover benefits to society. Engaging startups is critical to driving innovation, and venture capital decision makers must commit to diversifying to co-create and drive value for customers and clients.