RFPIO was in our first cohort of investments that we made at Elevate Capital. I met RFPIO’s CEO, Ganesh Shankar, even before I launched Elevate. When Ganesh came to pitch at a TiE event in January 2016, I immediately sensed his passion and drive. It was infectious right from the beginning.
While venture capital has been the fuel that powers innovation in America, it has long been concentrated in select major cities across the country. Given that the country’s most powerful and fastest-growing companies are clustered in hubs like the Silicon Valley, New York City, and Seattle, it’s not surprising that venture capital shares a similarly concentration.
Venture capital has historically been an insular, isolated world. In the world of venture capital, women and minorities are dramatically underrepresented – both in terms of having the power to give out funding, and in being on the receiving end of that funding. Today, venture capital continues to exclude female and minority entrepreneurs from the investment pipeline.
Elevate Capital has remained committed to supporting female and minority founders in Oregon and across the globe. Of the 198 employees employed by Elevate Capital’s 14 portfolio companies, over 70 percent are women and minorities. The Elevate Inclusive fund continues to invest exclusively in women and minorities. In fact, over half of Elevate Capital’s new companies are led by women.
Portland, OR (August 31, 2016) – Elevate Capital announced that it has completed the first close of its $3 million Elevate Inclusive Fund and $10 million Elevate Capital Fund and has made investments in its first cohort of six women and minority entrepreneur-led startups. Elevate Capital is a Pacific Northwest-based venture firm that invests in early stage under-represented entrepreneurs, including women and minorities that include communities of color, veterans, and entrepreneurs located in under-served regions.