Ready Set Raise, an accelerator for women built by women, announces third class

In 2018, Leslie Feinzaig, the founder of Female Founders Alliance, launched a free, equity-free accelerator for women called Ready Set Raise. The goal was to provide under-networked female founders the coaching and connections needed to raise money. This year, as funding for female founders drops to 2017 levels, Feinzaig realized why accelerators, hers included, might […]

Google is providing cash awards to 76 startups through a racial equity initiative announced in June

Amid months of protest this summer, as more of the world began to awaken to the many ways that people of color are systemically discriminated against, a wide number of companies announced initiatives aimed at improving the representation of underrepresented groups within their own ranks and as recipients of their investment dollars. Unsurprisingly, Alphabet, among […]

Black founders face a unique set of challenges

The notion that Black people in America need to work twice as hard as others to succeed may be a depressing sentiment, but it has been deeply ingrained into the psyches of many African-Americans. At TechCrunch Disrupt, several Black founders spoke about some of the burdens that come along with being a Black person in […]

Benchmark’s Peter Fenton: ’10 to 20 years of innovation just got pulled forward’

Earlier today at TechCrunch Disrupt, venture capitalist Peter Fenton joined us to talk about a variety of issues. Among them, we discussed how he’s putting his stamp on Benchmark now that, 15 years after joining the storied firm, he’s its most senior member. Fenton said that he’s mostly focused on ensuring that the firm doesn’t […]

The art of pivoting with Phaedra Ellis-Lamkins and Jessica Matthews

Building and growing a startup is hard, but pivoting said startup into something new and then achieving that same growth is even harder. But it’s not impossible. Phaedra Ellis-Lamkins, founder and CEO of PromisePay, and Jessica Matthews, founder and CEO of Uncharted Power, both have experiences doing this. At TechCrunch Disrupt, they shed some light […]

London VCs launch joint initiative to expand funding opportunities for underrepresented founders

A group of U.K.-based VCs have come together to create a new virtual pitching event designed to address the problems with the current startup ecosystem that can lead to inequalities and “warm intros” made only between privileged classes and ethnicities. Held on the 30th of September, “Access All” will be a new virtual event geared […]

Instagram is building a product equity team and hiring a director of diversity and inclusion

Instagram announced some changes it’s making that are geared toward advancing equity within its workplace. The changes come after Instagram in June spoke about elevating, rather than suppressing, Black voices in light of the killing of George Floyd. “More than ever, people are turning to the platform to raise awareness for the racial, civic, and […]

Building paths to funding for Black female founders

Amid a racial justice reckoning following countless events of police brutality (justice for Breonna Taylor), it’s high time companies and investors in the tech industry do more than just say “Black Lives Matter,” but show that Black lives matter. As Human Utility CEO Tiffani Ashley Bell aptly put it, “Make the hire, send the wire!” […]

Black founders can get tactical advice at Disrupt

In the aftermath of George Floyd’s death and widespread protests for racial justice, a number of venture capitalists made public statements about wanting to improve diversity in the tech industry — and more specifically to fund more diverse founders. Their comments are certainly worth applauding, but actual change is a lot harder. And if it […]

Five proven ways to attract and hire more diverse talent

Mikaela Kiner Contributor Share on Twitter Mikaela Kiner is an executive coach and author of “Female Firebrands: Stories and Techniques to Ignite Change, Take Control, and Succeed in the Workplace.” A few years ago, I came to the realization that my company, an HR consulting firm, was not as diverse as I wanted it to […]