Global financial services firm, Morgan Stanley, recently announced the launch of an accelerator program for technology and technology-enabled startups in the post-seed to Series A funding rounds. The programed is called the Multicultural Innovation Lab and it targets startups with a woman or multicultural founder, co-founder, or CTO who has potential for innovations that could change sectors.
The Lab will be making investments in these potential high-growth companies and will support the founder’s development and growth through use of internal and external partners. Chosen companies will work from Morgan Stanley’s headquarters in Times Square, New York. They will receive value-added content, as well as technical and fundamental support to accelerate growth.
This program will run four months and result in an entrepreneurs’ symposium in November, exposing the companies to potential investors through showcase format presentations. William Crowder, formerly of Comcast Ventures, has been enlisted as Entrepreneur-in-Residence. He will work with entrepreneurs, as well as the Multicultural Client Strategy team through the entirety of the lab. He will help address challenges as a company insider in order to increase progress and performance.
The companies below have been selected for the Fall 2017 cohort:
AptDeco was founded by Kalam Dennis and Reham Fagiri in 2013. It provides a peer-to-peer online marketplace for the selling and buying of quality preowned furniture. It offers a complete end-to-end service, which includes coordinated pickup and delivery. The company website is located here.
GitLinks offers an open source risk management platform. It detects open source used by developer’s in a company’s applications and can provide a real-time inventory list. It can then track licenses, security vulnerabilities, and updates, while also alerting managers to security and legal compliance risks in their products. Learn more here.
Kairos is an artificial intelligence company that specializes in facial recognition. Through the use of machine learning and computer vision, Kairos recognizes faces in the real-world, videos, and photos. This allows the company to offer help for companies when transforming the way the business interacts with people. You can learn more here.
Landit works to provide an approach for increasing engagement and success of women in the workplace. It offers application-based, personalized advice at both the enterprise and personal level. The startup helps companies attract, retain, and develop high-potential diverse talent. The company website is here.
Trigger Finance offers a mobile first investing platform that encourages rules-based investing for the do-it-yourself investor. The platform allows investors the ability to manage their portfolios through natural language rules and alternative orders. If-then statements can be used to turn any event into an action on their portfolio. Learn more here.
“With less than 3% of venture capital dollars going to multicultural entrepreneurs, we will use Morgan Stanley’s global reach to provide the capital, content, and connections needed to help accelerate the growth of these exciting companies and help bridge that funding gap,” said Alice Vilma, executive director of Morgan Stanley.