Meena Harris, U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris’ niece, has officially entered into the investing space.
TechCrunch reports that the lawyer and entrepreneur’s Phenomenal Ventures, alongside her partner Helen Min, has publicly launched. The firm has closed a debut early-stage-focused fund that totals $6 million.
The outlet details that investors were firms 776, Tribe Capital, Slow Ventures, and founders from the likes of Dropbox, Quora, and Pinterest.
“There are funds of all sizes still being raised, we know that there’s money out there that is still being deployed and raised, but not many of them are led by solo GPs — even fewer are led by women, let alone women of color, or people like us who are women of color and aren’t career venture capitalists,” Harris said, according to the outlet.
Due to the fund, Phenomenal Ventures is now able to participate in rounds ranging from pre-seed to Series A.
“We really feel confident in our ability to succeed but also really wanted to start modestly and just do the work…despite some of the uncertainty around the economy,” Harris shared. “You can be fundraising forever, especially in terms of what the economy looks like,” she added.
Since its founding, the joint VC firm has invested in 13 companies. The outlet notes that nine of them are led by underrepresented founders.
“Every company that Meena and I have worked for — as startups employees at Facebook, Slack, Dropbox, Uber, Plaid, Quora, AngelList, they are literally all by non-underrepresented founders — our networks very much reflect those companies and the networks we were a part of for so long, to say we’re going to turn [down] that deal flow that surfaces because of the network we’re a part of… I don’t think [that] super makes sense, especially not for fund one,” Min said. “Venture is all about leveraging the unique access that you have.”