Few vocations offer the same opportunities for ownership upside and multi-generational wealth creation as entrepreneurship. For many, the word “entrepreneurship” suggests the Silicon Valley stereotype of elite tech bros making billions through their well-funded endeavors. Given the financial stakes of much venture capital, this stereotype exists because it’s largely true—which means the tech entrepreneurs who fit a particular profile are most likely to have access to opportunity and resources to grow their enterprise.
We're interested in ventures that see access to entrepreneurship as a viable and critical activity for talented and ambitious people from all communities. They provide opportunity to those excluded from financial and social-capital networks that often go back generations. From fellowships to mentoring to niche funds and more, we need many more ventures interested in less market-obvious opportunities, including those for women, people of color, and less-resourced entrepreneurs who lack access to the conventional pathways to entrepreneurship.
In today’s commercially-driven world people are more likely to be seen and referred to as 'consumers' than anything else. Instead of being met with resistance, this shift has often meant that individuals have formed their identity through a composite of brands, and product purchasing can be guided more by the desire to make a statement about one’s identity and values than strict utility. As a result, the lines between social movement, capitalism, and community are increasingly blurry (see: Nike, Whole Foods, and Patagonia).
Given this reality (which is with us for both better and worse), we’d like to support entrepreneurs with a vision for building brands with a counter-culturally virtuous and optimistic view of the world, spreading hope and beauty, eliminating stigma, and most fundamentally, redirecting our identity away from materialistic consumption and toward lasting contentment.
Praxis VEntures Working On This ORI
empowers men and women in urban communities across Phoenix with the intellectual, social, and financial capital to start businesses that glorify God and serve their neighbor (Oye Waddell, Nonprofit 2019).
is an automated loan origination platform for community banks. Their mission is to increase loan access and affordability for small businesses that can create economic opportunity (Bernard Worthy & Justin Straight, Business 2019).