NVCA is committed to expanding opportunities for women and men of all backgrounds to thrive in the entrepreneurial ecosystem and has a long history of working to increase diversity through public policy, research, events and collaboration. As part of that commitment, we launched the NVCA Diversity Task Force to develop a clear and measurable path to increase opportunities for women and men of diverse backgrounds to thrive in venture capital and entrepreneurship.
Diversity is core to competitiveness
Diversity is core to the competitiveness of the U.S. venture capital industry. The mission of venture capital investors is to partner with the most promising entrepreneurs to turn innovative ideas into successful companies. The entrepreneurial ecosystem cannot perform at its best if it does not include all of the promising talent, regardless of their background. While entrepreneurs continue to prove Moore’s law of exponential improvement, the venture capital industry has not kept pace in investing in people of diverse backgrounds.
We must act with intention
Building a more diverse ecosystem is not an issue that will solve itself. If the venture capital industry is committed to supporting diverse talent, we must act with intention in order to expand our networks, to engage with a new population of entrepreneurs, to market our firms in new ways in order to welcome women and underrepresented minorities into our firms and portfolios.
Investors that value inclusiveness will lead the way
We believe that the venture capital firms that recognize the competitive value of investing in women and minority founders and bringing diverse talent into their investment teams will lead the way. Expanding their reach for the most qualified talent and the most promising startups will only increase their likelihood of success. Last year, venture capital investors invested almost $60 billion in more than 4,300 high-growth companies. Even in this active investing climate, there remains an enormous, untapped opportunity to support and invest in diverse entrepreneurial talent. This opportunity belongs to the firms that aggressively pursue and foster the best, brightest young talent in their teams and in their portfolios.
Impact begins with firm leadership
We are committed to establishing leadership within the venture community to pursue our core mission of advancing people of different genders, races, orientations, socioeconomic groups, geographies and talents who desire to build and invest in high-growth companies. Through forums, research and programming, it’s our mission to examine the lack of diversity in the venture capital industry and develop meaningful solutions to support diverse groups of venture capitalists and entrepreneurs in order to build a stronger entrepreneurial ecosystem for the 21st Century. Working together, we can move toward building an innovation ecosystem that reflects the diversity of our nation and further propels us forward.
Building a More Inclusive Entrepreneurial Ecosystem
Over the past several years, venture capital firms had to answer important questions about the lack of women and minorities on their teams, and in their portfolio companies. New pioneers came to the fore, raising funds and building organizations dedicated to fostering underrepresented minorities. Tech companies of all sizes have disclosed their internal diversity numbers and spearheaded new initiatives to improve the diversity of their teams. Policymakers and federal agencies in Washington have taken action to support diverse entrepreneurs.
Taking our inspiration from entrepreneurs, we believe in open sourcing what we are learning and iterating to success. We have been privileged to work with leaders in the inclusion and diversity community who have taught us and welcomed us into the conversation.
In our report, Building a More Inclusive Entrepreneurial Ecosystem, you can learn more about the changemakers and pioneers that are making great strides in advancing inclusion. Every venture capital firm, no matter its size, can make a difference and take action.