Giving Compass' Take:
- Nicola Corzine, executive director of the Nasdaq Entrepreneurial Center in San Francisco, highlights some critical steps to draw in and support underrepresented minority entrepreneurs.
- What are the structural barriers that are keeping minority entrepreneurs out of talent pipelines?
- Read more about the barriers facing entrepreneurs of color.
What is Giving Compass?
We connect donors to learning resources and ways to support community-led solutions. Learn more about us.
Minority businesses could boost the economy by as much as $300 billion, according to the Center for Global Policy Solutions. Yet many of these are sole proprietorships and are often working with limited resources that hamper their ability to expand and create more jobs and revenue.
In the last year, design firm GraphicSprings’ analysis of 5,000 funding announcements and exit reports found that only 4% of female-owned businesses and 13% of minority-owned businesses received venture capital funding. Part of the reason is that less than 3% of VC funds have black and Latinx investment partners, according to Pitchbook. Another reason is that VCs keep going back to the well of alumni from Stanford, Harvard, and the University of California, Berkeley, despite continued empirical evidence that diversity boosts innovation and female leadership increases pay parity, employee satisfaction, and ultimately the bottom line.
“It highlights some of the disconnect around pattern matching and the way that Silicon Valley has historically identified and selected the top talent that they want to invest in,” says Nicola Corzine, “All the way through to the access to education or the lack thereof, strength of mentors, strength of coaching.”
Corzine is the executive director of the Nasdaq Entrepreneurial Center in San Francisco. Throughout her career–she’s been a deal manager and partner with Band of Angels, Silicon Valley’s oldest seed funding group–Corzine has evaluated over 7,800 deals and steered $30 million in seed financing to 95 startups. Since 2015, she’s steered the nonprofit center’s efforts to serve more than 7,500 entrepreneurs. Among their ranks are 49% women and 61% minority entrepreneurs.
Read about the ways to help underrepresented entrepreneurs by Lydia Dishman at Fast Company.