By David Matthau
Efforts continue to help women and minority business owners and entrepreneurs in New Jersey attract the capital to grow.
Tim Sullivan, the chief executive officer of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority, said the EDA is committed to making the Garden State economy more equitable and diverse. Discussions are underway with members of academia, the business community, investors and others to get ideas about new strategies to help expand opportunities.
A new initiative is being formulated that will probably be rolled out in the next six to 12 months “to make sure that more capital, particularly venture capital, is flowing to women led startups and startups led by founders of color.”
Toward that end, he said a week and a half ago the EDA and Rutgers Business Schools convened what was described as the first-ever New Jersey Founders and Funders Diversity Roundtable event in Newark to talk about ideas, programs and initiatives to promote the fair allocation of capital to entrepreneurs of color, and how to support developing minority-owned firms.
“The good news is there’s lots of smart people in New Jersey who are working on this and have been working on this for a number of years, who can give us advice and suggestions,” he said.
Sullivan said the amount of venture capital flowing to companies founded by women and people of color has been extremely small, but “we feel we can move the needle in a positive direction here.”
Sullivan pointed out when venture capital supports minority-owned businesses it’s beneficial “not just for the founders but for …