Inclusive Investing? Invest Alongside a Venture Capitalist
VC-led rounds are no longer exclusive. Bridging the wealth divide requires action, not words. Inclusive-investing is a new model with great promise.
“We are pleased to announce the successful roll-out of our ‘Invest Alongside Our VC’ inclusive investing campaign for our accelerator graduates, with our initial launch on WeFunder (wefunder.com/fgfino), ” says Barbara Bickham, Managing Director of WIF AX, LLC.
The First Investment
WIF AX, LLC has invested in Fuego Fino, Inc., currently being crowdfunded after its exit from the WIF AX capital stack program. This investment can be found on Wefunder (wefunder.com/fgfino).
“I learned many things in the accelerator, especially in terms of our structuring of the investment, not as a SAFE note, but offering equity now, and having a structure for further offerings,” says Jessica Contreras, CEO of Fuego Fino, Inc.
The Rich Get Richer & The Poor Get Poorer
It is often said: “A rising tide floats all boats.” Thus if a larger portion of society benefited from investing, would we not be richer as a whole? Many people push the benefits of producing more with less. What if the same mindset was applied to people? By being able to benefit more people instead of less. Early investments up to this point have mainly given rise to the 1%, who have been the investors that benefited from early ‘wealthy investors only’ offerings in the Ubers and Facebooks of this era. But what if we allowed a greater portion of the population to gain from those early entries? Doesn’t this push towards a larger wealth distribution benefit us all?
What’s the difference? Structuring the foundation.
Crowdfunding opened the door to many offerings, the only issue is that many of those offerings were not structured as priced rounds. They were structured as SAFE notes, basically, a contract to own a future position. Whereas rounds in which many VC’s invested in were clear cut in terms of ownership, a structured entry, allowing the VC to have at least an eye towards an exit. What if this structure was provided and the VC invested alongside the general public through crowdfunding? This is what inclusive investing is all about, and it may serve to fill the wealth gap with action — rather than words.
“A SAFE note — future equity — means to us at WIF AX VC that you are taking on investors without understanding how that affects future rounds and returns. We encourage our accelerator graduates through our Capital Stack program to have structured entries — so that exits are possible. Founders need to understand what their structure is so that investors get a real ownership stake,” says WIF AX Managing Director, Barbara Bickham.