San Fransisco-Based Startup Secures $3M in Black and Latinx Investor-Led Special Purpose Vehicle
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San Fransisco-Based Startup Secures $3M in Black and Latinx Investor-Led Special Purpose Vehicle

Finix, a payment infrastructure startup company, has made an announcement that, they hope, will level the playing field between white and Black investors.

According to TechCrunch, founder Richie Serna wanted his company’s cap table to be more diverse — in other words, he wanted to give Black and Latinx investors access to an opportunity they may not have otherwise had.

This lack of opportunity is substantiated by a recent NVCA-Deloitte Human Capital Survey, which found that 80% of investment partners at VC firms are white, and just 3% are Black and 3% are Hispanic/Latinx.

In August, the Mexican-American-led company secured $30 million in funding — what TechCrunch calls an “extension of its Series B.” However, Serna wanted to take things up a notch by broadening the company’s cap table. Fast forward to now, and he’s raised an extra $3 million through a special purpose vehicle (SPV) that allowed over 80 “traditionally marginalized” investors to have a seat at Finix’s cap table.

“Black investors and other Latinx entrepreneurs were the first people to believe in me and back Finix,” Serna said, according to TechCrunch. “I’m honored to pay it forward by creating the SPV, and I hope other founders are inspired to do the same.”

Serna said that he hopes the diverse offerings at Finix will help to bridge this gap between white and Black investors. What’s more, about 10% of all funding rounds in the future will be allocated to Black and Hispanic investors.

“This is about helping historically underrepresented groups build track records and get attribution for the work to help them start their careers and hopefully one day start their own fund,” Serna told TechCrunch. “So this is just one way that we at Finix can construct a rewrite of the story about the lack of diversity in Silicon Valley.”

Jewel Burks Solomon, a managing partner of Collab Capital and head of Google for Startups, agreed that this unique opportunity is a good one for Black and Hispanic investors.

“Access is the primary determinant of wealth creation,” Solomon said, in the press release announcement. “So creating an opportunity for access to folks who might not otherwise have it is game-changing.”

Today, Finix has about 100 employees, 50% of whom Serna says he’s never met in person due to the pandemic and remote work. The company plans to double its headcount over the next year.