Morgan Stanley just announced the second cohort of its Multicultural Innovation Lab, an accelerator program for technology and technology-enabled start-ups in the post-seed to Series B funding rounds.
The program—now in its second year—targets companies with a multicultural or woman founder, co-founder, or any Chief (insert) Officer in charge of what it calls “innovative solutions across sectors.”
According to various studies, female founders, founders of color—and both—receive as little or less than 1% of venture capital funding—a gap Morgan Stanley says it wants to bridge.
“There is a compelling business case for investing in startups led by women and multicultural founders, yet, as found in our recent report, there is a large market inefficiency to accelerate businesses led by these founders,” Managing Director Alice Vilma says. “We are working to directly address this funding gap, one cohort at a time.”
With less than 3% admitted into the program, each startup will take a seat on its on floor inside Morgan Stanley’s global headquarters in Times Square, New York.
In addition, the companies funded receive pretty precious billboard space all over Times Square. It’s real fancy.
Here are the 10 companies that were selected:
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Millennials To Gen Z: 5 Ways They Differ In The Workplace
(Editor’s Note: The following article is a guest post by superstar entrepreneur and tech investor Jonathan Schultz.)
There has been plenty of focus on millennials in the past few years, but it’s now time to redirect our attention to Gen Z. Right now Gen Z is entering the workforce and are ready to become the face of corporate America.
While there are plenty of similarities between Gen Z and Millennials, let’s look at a few ways they differ.
Gen Z is more competitive
Millennials have been said to be collaborative and teamwork focused and want to operate in an environment where they feel included and part of something bigger. Gen Z is said to be more competitive and want to be judged based off of their individual performance.
Gen Z also understands that there is a need for consistent development in skills in order to compete. This generation will do whatever it takes but certainly wants to reap rewards for it.
Gen Z is highly idependent
Gen Z typically likes to work alone and many of them would rather have their own office space as opposed to working in open and collaborative environments. This generation also prefers to manage their own projects, so their unique skill sets can be exposed.
Gen Z does not want to depend on others to get things done.
Gen Z prefers face-to-face communication
Millennials love to communicate via email, text, and anything other than face-to-face. The Gen Z group are huge in-person interactors and prefer it over the less personal email or text.
Millennials have received a lot of “bad press” for being so attached to their phones and Gen Z wants to transition out of that shadow. This generation will want more in-person meetings to discuss projects, etc.
Gen Z knows technology
Gen Z has known nothing other than technology their entire lives. They grew up with Facebook, texting, etc. Millennials still grew up with landlines and dial-up internet.
While Millennials are tech-savvy, Gen Z has been living in a world of smartphones for as long as they can remember. This generations relationship to technology is almost instinctual rather than learned.
Gen Z expects the workplace to conform to their needs
Gen Z wants everything to be catered to their needs. This is why companies have had to re-think the amenities they offer and how they structure their offices in order to meet the needs of this young workforce.
Companies now have to appeal to this younger mindset and have a less cookie-cutter approach to the environment they create for their employees. While millennials also expect the workplace to conform to their needs, for Gen Z, it could mean the difference between accepting a job offer or not.
There are obviously very clear differences between these two generations. Yes, every member of a generation will have their own unique traits and characteristics, but overall you will see that Gen Z is a more independent and technologically-advanced group in comparison to Millennials.
Jonathan Schultz is an entrepreneur, real estate tech investor and influencer. He’s the co-founder of Onyx Equities, a leading private equity real estate firm, and has been voted one of the most powerful people in real estate. Follow Jon’s blog here.
GRAPH: 63 Fintech Startups That Are Targeting Millennials
Many fintech startups are leveraging existing technologies already popular among young adults such as social networks and mobile messaging.
Project crowdfunding sites GoFundMe and Andreessen Horowitz-backed Tilt, for example, mirror or take advantage of social networks and are largely popular among college audiences. Google Ventures and General Catalyst-backed HelloDigit transfers money directly via text message.
The graphic below breaks down the set of primarily US-based fintech companies appealing to the millennial generation including Robinhood, Acorns, Wealthfront, Earnest and more. (As we’ve also highlighted separately, startups in the digital banking market have attracted more than $10B since 2010.)