- Elevate Capital, the first inclusive venture capital fund in Oregon that supports diversity by targeting companies led by minorities, announced it is raising a $40 million second fund
Elevate Capital, the first inclusive venture capital fund in Oregon that supports diversity by targeting companies led by women, founders of color, LGBTQ, immigrants, and veterans, announced it is raising a second fund. The $40 million fund will invest 4x times the amount of capital into regional and national startups and dramatically increase access to capital for underrepresented founders.
In order to put together the venture capital fund, Elevate Capital is announcing a new general partner team of three entrepreneurs and operators in addition to founder and managing director Nitin Rai — who would help founders build generational wealth, provide mentorship, a network, and education. The new general partner team includes Jill Nelson (Ruby founder), Raghu Raghavan (Act-on Software founder), and Kumar Sripadam (Redback Networks founder).
Nelson is developing the mentorship program and will work closely with five executive partners including Nat Parker (Moovel founder), Ana Chaud (Garden Bar founder), Michael Choi (Axiom founder and CTO), Ketan Sampat (CafeGive founder), and Chris Bright (Zapproved co-founder and CMO).
The initial fund put together by Elevate Capital has realized several exits and saw strong overall performance with a greater than 40% cash return in 28 portfolio companies with two successful exits in three years. And over 80% of the investments were led by diverse founders and created 500 jobs, mostly in the Portland metropolitan area and with the Oregon state.
“Elevate Capital embodies what Portland stands for: an inclusive, innovative, and scrappy start-up culture,” said Nitin Rai, Founder and Managing Director of Elevate Capital. “We have shown that by focusing on this area, we are cultivating entrepreneurs that have traditionally not had access to capital and they are delivering. Our performance is showing the entire venture capital industry why investing in female and multicultural-led startups is not only the right thing to do but the smart thing to do.”
Elevate Fund II is going to continue on the proven investment strategy of the first fund. And the focus will be on early-stage Seed and Series A investments led by diverse founders.
Elevate Capital is planning a first close of Fund II in the second/third quarter of 2020 and will be making investments quickly after.