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Unconventional Ventures launches new “open to all” microfund

93% of capital invested in Nordic startups goes to all-male founding teams — this VC wants to change that

By Freya Pratty

93% of capital invested in Nordic startups goes to all-male founding teams women are less likely to secure funding, and those who do are given less money than their male counterparts. 

Early stage investment VC Unconventional Ventures wants to change that, and it’s launching a new microfund focused on women, people of colour and LGBTQ people to do so. 

For investors, the fund’s open to all. Starting from a minimum of 500, anyone who wants to invest can. 

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The reasoning behind the “open for all” ethos came from a report the VC firm published in October, showing the link between those on the investing panel and those who secure funds. 

By opening the fund to anyone who wants to invest, the firm hopes those receiving investment will start to more accurately mirror society. 

“The change in who gets access to external capital to build companies needs to speed up if we’re ever to become equal or invest in the sustainable development of our future,” says Thea Messel, partner at the firm.

“We wanted to set up a vehicle that was accessible for everyone who believes in the potential in investing in an equal future.”

The fund is Unconventional Ventures’ second. The first was set up last year and was invested in by members of the VC’s network. 85% of the 60 investors were women and the fund was worth 125,000. 

It was invested into eight companies, including Riteband a ‘stock exchange for musicians’ which helps fans of bands purchase shares of their future copyright and Swedish startup Progress me, which makes digital tools to help people with eating disorders. 

The new fund is about repeating the success of the last but in a more accessible way, explains Nora Bavey, another partner at the firm.

“Investing in under-represented founders is not about charity but is a sound business decision and at the same time part of securing our future welfare,”  Bavey says. 

“It is our duty to ensure that services and products are built by and for our entire society with equal funds.”

 

Freya Pratty covers news at Sifted. She has previously interned at Bloomberg and tweets from @FPratty

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