Harlem Capital is changing tech’s landscape by investing in diversity.
It’s no secret that tech has a diversity problem. Part of this has to do with the fact that a majority of venture capital dollars goes to startups led by white male entrepreneurs. Women-led startups only get about 3 percent of all VC money spent, while women of color get less than 1 percent.
Harlem Capital’s mission is to invest in early-stage startups led by minority and female founders. The firm has the goal to invest in 1,000 diverse founders over the next 20 years, and now it’s secured the capital to get started.
On Monday, Harlem Capital announced its $40.3 million debut fund. The firm’s initial target was to hit $25 million, but the fund was oversubscribed past its $40 million cap.
This debut fund has gained its investments from 55 limited partners, half of which are women or people of color. The firm has already used this money to make eight investments, in startups including Jobble, Wagmo and Aunt Flow. Harlem Capital plans to use the funds to invest in a total of 30 companies. Its investments range from $250K to $1M in Series A and Seed funding.
The firm was started by Managing Partners Henri Pierre-Jacques and Jarrid Tingle in 2015. Since then, the firm has added more partners leading up to its debut fund.
“We are grateful for the incredible support from our LPs and broader network that enabled a successful closing. Harlem Capital is now well-positioned to back women and minority entrepreneurs with meaningful investments and follow-on capital,” Jarrid Tingle said in a statement.
“This closing is a huge accomplishment for us, but also just the beginning of a long mission to change the face of entrepreneurship. The fundraising process was truly humbling and enabled us access to so many incredible people. Thank you to all that made this first step possible,” Henri Pierre-Jacques added.