Accessibility to capital is one of the largest challenges faced by women and BIPOC entrepreneurs.
Backbone Angels launched one year ago today to tackle this issue and today, on International Women’s Day, they are celebrating their one-year anniversary.
Backbone Angels is a collective of 10 women in tech who are united around the same goal: funding—and empowering—founders, businesses, and ideas that are often overlooked.
They also share something in common on their LinkedIn profiles – each one of them currently works for e-commerce darling Shopify or did so in the past.
When an entrepreneur gets investment from one of the Backbone Angels, they get access to all 10 founders and their collective experience across talent, marketing, design, data, and more.
When Backbone Angels launched, the collective was focused on proving its model. One year later, Backbone Angels have eclipsed this goal having invested USD $2.3 million in 42 women and BIPOC-led companies.
Seventy-two per cent of their invested capital is in first-time founders, so it is clear that the collective is supporting entrepreneurs who have traditionally been overlooked.
Backbone Angels has invested in local startups Blume and Snack but the collective isn’t limiting themselves to early angel rounds. Earlier this year they participated in 1Password’s massive $620 million Series C round that valued the Toronto unicorn over $6 billion.
Techcouver chatted with Lynsey Thornton, a Vancouver-based Founding Partner of Backbone Angels, “Backbone invests all over the world, however, I will always have a special appreciation for BC tech. It brings me great joy to see us investing here. There’s some strong momentum coming out of the pandemic and as a part of Backbone I plan to play a part in its future success.”
By funding women and BIPOC founders, Backbone is elevating solutions being developed for challenges women and other marginalized groups face.
Now, they are turning up the dial and formalizing how they onboard new startups.
To create a faster, inclusive, and transparent experience, Backbone will run multiple cohorts each year where founders can submit their business for Backbone to review and consider investment.
From March 8, 2022 until April 8, 2022, Backbone will be accepting submissions. Once closed, the Backbone Angels will review all the applications and applicants can expect to hear a reply by April 24, 2022.