Liberty Global Ventures is investing $2 million in specialist impact investment firm Avesta Capital to deliver seed funding to start-ups to help promote diversity and inclusion, and tackle the global challenges of climate change and inequality.
With this close, Avesta Capital has now raised over 80% of its target $20 million fund. Avesta will use the capital to provide seed investment to start-ups that specifically offer scalable solutions to issues such as boosting economic opportunity or aiding the fight against climate change. Avesta also has a policy of prioritizing support for entrepreneurs from diverse backgrounds. Avesta’s fund aims to bridge the technology start-up and impact investing ecosystems, providing specialist expertise to help technology companies that can have significant impact at scale connect with impact investors.
Start-ups backed by the Avesta Fund include Line Financial, working to improve the financial well-being and inclusion of people who work in the gig economy and WattBuy, who help improve access to cheaper and cleaner electricity for renters across America.
Liberty Global Ventures has investments in more than 75 companies and funds in the fields of content, technology and infrastructure. The group’s technology investments are scalable across international markets, with deals ranging in size from $5 million to $30 million. Its portfolio includes a number of innovative and high growth companies such as Aviatrix, Lacework, Pax8, Pensando and Plume.
Alongside the new strategic partnership with the impact investment firm, Liberty Global is a founding member of the European Green Digital Coalition and also featured in the influential Dow Jones Sustainability World index for the eighth year in 2020. The company was also awarded leadership status by CDP Global (formerly known as the Carbon Disclosure Project) in its most recent annual survey into climate change and carbon emissions.
John Gowen, Managing Director, Liberty Global Ventures, comments: “Building on our strong sustainability credentials, this strategic partnership allows us to be early backers of companies that are tackling some of the biggest and most pressing issues facing society. We look forward to working with Avesta to help support companies that will deliver lasting positive impact, as well as superior financial returns.”
Soraya Loerts, Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer, Liberty Global, adds: “Driving equality of opportunity and supporting diversity is core to life at Liberty Global. We’re pleased to extend this to supporting start-ups that reflect our own values around diversity, equity and inclusion, and working with Avesta to encourage entrepreneurs from diverse backgrounds to scale up and make a difference.”
Srikant Vasan, Managing Partner, Avesta Capital, adds: “Avesta combines profit and purpose, a combination that we believe is a lot more powerful, sustainable and scalable than pure philanthropy and more meaningful than pure profit-making. By supporting entrepreneurs from diverse backgrounds, we aim to reduce the inequalities faced by those who have historically experienced difficulties getting access to capital, while at the same time delivering positive returns.”