XFactor Ventures has launched a second fund to support women-founded startups. In addition to funding companies with at least one woman on the founding team, the early-stage venture capital firm also aims to give other female founders a path into investing.
The firm is led by successful female founders who have set up a total of 28 companies, raised over half a billion in venture capital and managed thousands of employees. The team leverages their collective experiences to provide capital, mentors, knowledge and a vast network to other women hoping to establish a startup.
“The idea was to get together a group of powerhouse women to back the next generation,” Kathryn Minshew, one of XFactor’s partners and co-founder and CEO of The Muse, told Forbes in June 2018. “We all do informal mentoring for up-and-coming entrepreneurs. Having a formal way to do it was something I was excited about.”
Chip established XFactor Ventures in 2017 with a group of female founders who wanted to get into investing. With an initial fund of $3 million, the firm has to date made 28 investments and will make 53 more with “Fund 2.”
“As founders themselves, each investment partner has the insight to know who has what it takes to succeed, the insights and willingness to take a bet on entrepreneurs at the earliest stage, and the experience to help those companies succeed,” Chip explained in a press release. “XFactor 2’s team will increase to 23 investment partners, including myself, and expand across 6 cities. Our industry expertise ranges from B2B Software, to FinTech, AgTech, Healthcare, to consumer marketplaces and products. This gives us the ability to dive in head first and be helpful to our portfolio companies on a much deeper level.”
The VC firm invests in startups during the pre-seed and seed stages, where many women struggle to find investors. The new $8.6 million fund will also allow XFactor to increase its investments from $100,000 to $150,000 per company. The firm aims to offer the speed of angel investors with the experience, connections and guidance of a traditional venture capital firm.