Mindshift Capital: Gender-Lens VC as Part of Values-Aligned Investing
Mindshift Capital is a global, women-run venture firm investing in women-led companies solving big problems with sophisticated solutions. Mindshift is a leader in startup investments, whose partners have more than 45 years of combined industry experience and investment in over 10 countries.
Currently, in the US, only 2% of VC-backed start-ups are led by all-female founding teams, and only 15% of VC goes to founding teams with at least one female founder/co-founder – meaning that the majority (83%) of funding has been going to all-male founding teams. Mindshift is a leader in addressing this imbalance.
Mindshift’s portfolio showcases post-seed early-stage companies in the U.S., Europe, and the Middle East. Through a global network, Mindshift identifies companies with scalable technology, exceptional leadership, and high growth potential and then invests with a gender lens, ensuring diversity of thought while narrowing the funding gap for female-led ventures. Mindshift has invested in Shiok Meats, focused on cell-based cultivated meat, and Rebel Girls, an EdTech company for young female empowerment. Regardless of the company, Mindshift takes an active, collaborative role in the growth of their portfolio companies with a focus on successful exit pathways.
One of Mindshift’s investors is Innate Capital, an investment office that invests in “companies that help people align their finances with their values.” Innate’s portfolio includes several fintech companies offering halal and values-aligned financial solutions. These include companies in wealth management, home financing, education finance, and crowdfunding.
Innate chose to invest in Mindshift because it sees gender-lens investing as an important component of values alignment. Just as Innate sees avoiding harmful sectors and business practices as essential, it sees promoting gender equity and inclusion as a priority to make capital flows align with social values.
“We at Innate see gender-lens investing as a key component of aligning our investments with our values,” notes Dr. Aamir A. Rehman, Chair of Innate. “Mindshift is the ideal partner for us in ensuring that more of our capital flows to female founders and leaders who are building breakthrough businesses.”
Heather Henyon, Founding Partner of Mindshift Capital, adds, “Mindshift’s focus on female founders is an investment thesis that resonates both commercially and ethically. Many of our investors value Mindshift for the social impact it has, and we welcome values-aligned investors like Innate.”
In addition to being an investor in Mindshift, Dr. Rehman serves on the fund’s Limited Partners Advisory Committee (LPAC). He notes, “it is a joy for me to play an active role in supporting Mindshift and its portfolio companies, and to see these businesses thrive.”