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💥 The power of community in making money, investing in underestimated markets, an immigrant building a unicorn, money and more
A bi-weekly newsletter of curated resources for early-stage founders, funders, and friends.
Welcome to Lolita’s Newsletter! We share up-to-date and nugget-sized practical resources and advice for early-stage founders, funders, and friends. We are at 6,430 members. To access exclusive content, office hours, join our Slack community, and get your pitch deck reviewed become an annual subscriber or gift a subscription.
Skipping the GameStop story because I want to share my POC investor reflections instead. But before I do that, I do want to point out that the GameStop-Redditor situation is a great example of how extremely powerful community is in making money.
💭 Reflective thoughts: I come from a pre-seed/seed micro-VC fund perspective where we write small checks into underestimated founders (who usually lack “traditional” pedigree but have immense grit/hustle) and target markets that are often mistaken as "niche" or "too small." So, I tend to roll my eyes when a VC dismisses a company because they don’t see an A+ team/markets/etc. Although this annoys me, I want to keep an open mind to diverse perspectives. That’s why I recently asked VC Twitter: what objective criteria do you use to identify an +A team?
I also asked VC Twitter about how founders can make their case for the market they’re serving.
At the end of the day, though, I am not interested in falling prey to old tropes or traditional VC pattern matching that can keep me from investing in the best founders. So, I’m no longer going to question myself when traditional VCs push back on my thesis of investing in underestimated founders and underserved markets. After all, my unique insights - and that of other investors who come from underestimated backgrounds too - are what creates a wonderful community, a powerful differentiation moat, and an opportunity to create generational wealth for investors, my family, and our community.
Did you know? In the US alone, the purchasing power of minorities and women is over $3 trillion each (and growing). We're also quickly becoming a minority-majority country - Gen Z, Hawaii, California, Texas, Maryland and New Mexico are already there.
🍒 The cherry on top: a new guard in the startup world is rising and we’re going to win together, not in spite of being different but because of it. Proof in the last week alone: Arlan Hamilton (raised $1.07M in 9 hours last week for Backstage Capital to invest in underestimated founders), Arion Simone (raised $20M for the Fearless Fund to invest in women of color), Yelitsa Jean-Charles (raised $1M for Healthy Roots to create kid products that represent the beauty of diversity). So many of us see there’s money that’s being left on the table and we’re going to take it!
On that note, happy Black History Month!
: You can join my office hours at
's Startup Bootcamp. The
podcast featured me.
Startup-Investor Matching Tool
intros have resulted in
20 checks (+$2.8M!)
Congrats Tope Awotona for raising $350M for Calendly. Allison Barr Allen and Domm Holland for raising $102M for Fast. Shripriya Mahesh for raising $123M for Spero Ventures. Melody Koh for raising $100M for NextView Ventures IV. Kanyi Maqubela and Steve Jang for raising $100M for Kindred Ventures II. Nitin Rai for raising $26M for Elevate Capital. Jesse Draper for raising $21M for Halogen Ventures II. Nathalie Walton for raising $4.2M for Expectful. Alexandra Fine for raising $4M for Dame. Tanya Van Court for raising $3.9M for Goalsetter. Kishau Smith Rogers for raising a $2.17 million seed round for Time Study. Joanne Chen for becoming a General Partner at Foundation Capital. To Arian Simone, Henri Pierre-Jacques, Serena Williams, Soraya Darabi, Marcos Gonzalez, and all the funds investing in underestimated founders who received funding from Bank of America. Austin Clements and Ajay Relan for launching Slauson & Co. Theresia Gouw and Acrew Capital for launching the Diversity Capital Fund. Yohei Nakajima for launching Untapped Capital.
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Lolita Taub | Check this out if you’re an LP interested in connecting with women, POC, and LGBTQ+ emerging managers
Weekend Fund | Take a look at the stack that powers this popular early-stage fund
Backstage Capital | Learn how this VC fund is leveraging equity crowdfunding
Harlem Capital | Apply to their 10-wk remote internship program by 2/17
Startup-Investor Matching Tool | Receive thesis-aligned and customized deal flow
Raising or looking for co-investors?
what I invest in.
First Pitches | Learn how, we as immigrants, can build unicorns to-be
Lolita Taub | Black female founders: get resources for you and your startup
GSV Ventures | RSVP to chat with POC investors every Tues between 1/25 - 3/12, 9-10AM PST
Google for Startups | Black, Latinx, and Veteran founders: apply by 2/9 for Google’s Founders Academy - a virtual immersive 6-month program
Transparent Collective | Underestimated founders: apply by 3/1 to get access to 1:1 mentorship, pitch coaching, investor connections, and more
is an inclusive fund that invests in underserved minority entrepreneurs that include women, people of color including Black, Latinx and LGBTQ. They provide venture capital funding and mentorship nationally and 80% of the fund's current investments are in underserved entrepreneurs. Learn more about Elevate Capital
Dame | Learn more about the co that’s building a community around pleasure
Lolita Taub | Get a better understanding of community driven cos
Aubrie Pagano | Learn about how community is the future of business
Danielle Maveal | Check out this post on how to create an instant community
The Community Fund | Join our fireside chat on investing in community driven companies on 2/23
🙌🏽 Building a community-driven co?
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Women Who Tech | Women founders: learn more and apply by 2/9 for grants
Envision Accelerator | Underestimated founders in college: apply to a 12-week accelerator that comes with a <$10K grant by 2/10
Black Ambition | Black and Latinx founders: apply to compete for $1M in funding by 2/18
New Voices Foundation | Black women founders: apply for $10K grants by 2/28
Founder Institute | Black founders: access +700 accelerators, investors and more
Founder Grants | Access +80 grants for founders
Equity Crowdfunding | Raise up to $5 million on Republic
Non-dilutive capital | Create a profile to find non-dilutive capital on INTRO
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