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Matchstick Ventures' specific commitments to fight racism, injustice, and underrepresentation in our firm, portfolio and community

Wire and Hire

Matchstick's Specific Commitments to the Black Community to Drive Change

It is a painful week for our community as we once again face the realities of systemic racism and anti-Blackness in our society. From the murder of George Floyd in our backyard to the protests in our home states and around the country, it’s a time for reflection and change. The injustice that has again been exposed has made us sad and angry. Enough is enough. 


We are writing to publicly affirm our values and our commitment to building an inclusive entrepreneurial community, with access for all. We are committed to broadening and demystifying the closed networks that usually accompany venture capital. Our doors are open, and to the Black community – we stand by you


Yet, we can do more. We resonate with the framing that to “wire and hire” is how to make a difference. We’ve worked with Black founders and advisors in our network to put together clear actions we will take.  

Wire

We invest in Black founders. Seven percent of the companies we’ve invested in have Black founders or founding team members, seven times the appalling industry average. We invested in Black founders like Clarence (Upsie) and David (Curu) because they are amazing leaders who are building meaningful companies. To borrow a term from Clarence, “Black founders are dope.” This is the path we’ve been on, plan to continue with and yet it is not enough. We will do better.


We’ve heard stories of Black founders being uncomfortable approaching us because they thought we wouldn't take them seriously or have a chance at an investment. Our biases and ignorance of the Black experience has contributed to this situation. This is heartbreaking for us. Therefore, we commit to:


We hope our past actions and these future steps show the Black community we can be trusted, we are serious about their companies and we are allies. 

Hire

Unequal access to employment and leadership opportunities is a systemic issue for the Black community. Today we can commit to doing the following actions before June 1st, 2021 to help address this:



While it is a long road towards true equity and we do not have all of the answers, today we hope these commitments are a start. We thought about listening and waiting longer before putting ourselves out there with a specific intention and plan but we’d rather be leaders for positive change, even if it means we end up getting some of this wrong. We will keep listening and learning as better ways to make change reveal themselves, which will offer an opportunity to expand our efforts. 


We will need help accomplishing these goals. If you have interest, ideas and/or a network to help us, please contact us. We hope other Venture Capitalists and investors, especially in our markets, follow our lead and challenge them to step up and set commitments that drive change.


We are allies in the fight against racism, injustice, and underrepresentation. 


Natty Zola & Ryan Broshar
Matchstick Ventures

natty@matchstickventures.com

ryan@matchstickventures.com



Questions you may be asking:

June 5, 2020