Adam Quinton, founder of Lucas Point Ventures, explained his involvement with Astia and investment philanthropy as follows: I invest in women because I’ll make more money that way. Businesses with at least woman on the founding team have a slower burn rate, higher growth rates, and faster times to profitability.
His opening was apt for the About Astia event, introducing Astia’s work to a room full of New York entrepreneurs and investors (current or aspiring). Astia is a global network that works in three pillars: a non-profit that supports women’s success in high-growth businesses; an angel network to invest in early stage women-led high-growth businesses; and a venture fund that invests in women-led businesses in high-growth sectors.
Catherine Berman, Astia’s Senior VP for entrepreneur programs, won me over when she explained first that they aspire to be 50/50 in everything they do. Because Astia is not a women’s network, it is a network of people who recognize the value in changing the current 95/5 distribution of venture capital dollars to men vs women.
And then, the clincher: she explained that Astia aspires to work itself out of business within 10 years because venture money and opportunity will be equally distributed between men and women at that point. How refreshing to hear a non-profit organization designed and operating as they should be: highly strategic, impactful organizations designed to fix a problem in a limited amount of time and then close down and/or move on to a new problem.
Go Astia - I look forward to hearing a lot from you throughout the decade, and then absolutely nothing!