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The lack of parades during this year’s Pride Month does not dim the importance and influence of LGBTQ+ founders and funders in the impact world, which still has a long way to go: A recent McKinsey study found that LGBTQ+ people, particularly LGBTQ+ women of color, remain underrepresented in management positions, even at companies that outwardly embrace diversity.
So, what about the companies founded or funded by LGBTQ+ people? There’s quite a bit to celebrate. Loud Capital raised its first Pride Fund, a $10 million vehicle to invest in startups led by LGBTQ+ people. Grocery Outpost helps independent restaurants fight food waste by temporarily transitioning to grocery stores while lockdowns and quarantines leave them with more food than customers. Vancouver-based Fairware is creating sustainable promotional products for some of the largest companies in the world. TransTech Social Enterprises, founded by actress Angelica Ross, is training transgender and nonbinary people in technology and other in-demand skills through their unique career incubator — and even partnered with Chicago brewery Goose Island and RuPaul’s Drag Race to launch a Pride Month beer.
In Other News: Contactless payments, Toronto woos tech
The Racial Justice Investing Coalition is making some strategic changes in response to the Black Lives Matter protests. The next fintech challenge: making contactless payments easier for small-dollar transactions. Toronto wants to become a kinder, gentler Silicon Valley as Canadian ESG investments skyrocket. MasterCard’s purchase of an open-banking fintech startup for $825 million continues the acquisition trend among financial giants. Ford Foundation president Darren Walker is asking investors to give up privilege.