Jumpstart Nova Closes $55M Oversubscribed Fund To Invest In Black Founded Healthcare Companies
Photo Credit: Marcus Whitney
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Jumpstart Nova Closes $55M Oversubscribed Fund To Invest In Black Founded Healthcare Companies

In a press release, Jumpstart Nova has announced that it has closed a $55 million oversubscribed fund to invest exclusively in Black founded and led healthcare companies nationwide.

Jumpstart Health Investors (JHI) were joined by global institutions such as Eli Lilly and Company, HCA Healthcare, Cardinal Health, Atrium Health, Henry Ford Health System, LHC Group, Meharry Medical College, and American Hospital Association. The fund was launched alongside partners Bank of America, Pinnacle Financial Partners, FirstBank, Ingram Industries, Truxton Trust, and Vanderbilt University.

“We’re excited about the potential of Jumpstart Nova and to serve as one of its strategic health care partners,” said Dr. James E.K. Hildreth, President, and CEO of Meharry Medical College, according to a press release. “Particularly, in the world of health care, the small percentage of minority-founded and led businesses—5 percent—is almost reflective of the percentage of Black physicians practicing in America. Correcting this inequity requires bold approaches and ventures, and Jumpstart Nova’s support of Black founded and led companies in the health care sector is just that kind of innovative thinking.”

Oversubscribing its initial goal of $30 million, the round will propel the advancement of technological innovation. Jumpstart Nova’s newly raised funding will be used to steward Black-founded healthcare companies across health IT, digital health, tech-enabled services, diagnostic devices, biotech, medical device manufacturing, and consumer health and wellness, a press release states.

”The healthcare venture capital industry has missed out for decades on investing in America’s brilliant Black innovators, and this has been a loss for us all,” said Founder and Managing Partner of Jumpstart Nova, Marcus Whitney, in a statement. “Jumpstart Nova’s strong start and incredible group of limited partners validate the need to capitalize and support the vital solutions from this untapped talent base.”

Jumpstart Nova At The Forefront Of Healthcare Innovation

According to a press release, Jumpstart Nova is reportedly the first venture fund in America to invest exclusively in Black founded and led companies at the forefront of healthcare innovation.

Whitney founded Jumpstart Nova in response to a central gap he saw in the marketplace, and is the newest fund managed by Jumpstart Health Investors, co-founded alongside Vic Gatto in 2015. In more recent years, it succeeded in supporting the exit of four companies, half of them being Black-led. Whitney then realized the opportunity to bring these innovations to scale. The rest is history as Jumpstart Nova was born.

“Our initial portfolio companies are tackling important issues for the healthcare industry like equitable access to clinical trials, bringing novel cell and gene therapies to market, helping families with autistic children get the therapeutic support they need, and seeking to mitigate the risk of life threatening food allergy attacks,” Whitney said in a statement. “We knew these founders were ready for primetime when many doubted they even existed. Together, we are going to make a significant mark on the healthcare industry.”

Addressing Equity In Healthcare

Since the inception of Jumpstart Health Investors, seven funds have been launched, housing 150 portfolio companies. Additionally, Partner Kathryne Cooper joined the Jumpstart Nova team in August 2021 to facilitate deals and manage portfolios with Whitney.

Jumpstart Nova has proven to be a success as it allows investors to address equity in healthcare through various mediums such as maintaining good relations with Black-owned general partners, increasing the number of Black VC limited partners and VC professionals, and producing great returns that will aid in support for Black healthcare providers and innovators.