CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Antares today announced that, for the second consecutive year, it will allocate $1M of its own capital to historically underrepresented founders in partnership with Hello Alice, a multichannel platform that helps businesses launch and grow. The initiative is part of Antares’ REACH program, a key element of the Antares’ commitment to Responsible Investment and the intention it places on the role it plays in the broader financial ecosystem.
REACH, established in 2022, aims to expand access to capital for historically underrepresented groups (HUGs) at their earliest foundational stages, which would otherwise be challenging to obtain due to a lack of personal or “Friends and Family” funds and a discrepancy in how venture capital dollars are disseminated. A recent McKinsey report noted that in 2022, Black and Latino founders received only 1 percent and 1.5 percent, respectively, of total U.S. venture capital funding. Women-founded teams received 1.9 percent of venture capital funds, while only 0.1 percent of those funds went to Black and Latino female founders.
“We launched the REACH program to expand the flow of capital to historically underrepresented groups with a goal of addressing these discrepancies at the root level,” said Mary Rose, Head of Responsible Investment Strategy at Antares. “We’re proud to partner with Hello Alice once again as we seek to address inequities and create more balance in the financial industry.”
The grant program, in partnership with Hello Alice, will award $20,000 grants to approximately 40 small businesses. To qualify, businesses must have an established product/market fit, a clearly identified need for growth capital and be owned by entrepreneurs that are part of HUGs. A select group of up to 25 grant recipients will also be considered for participation in Antares’ Growth Track program, a digital community space which offers monthly business coaching workshops, mentorship and networking resources.
As part of the REACH program, Antares also supports grassroots community partners to help create a stronger ecosystem of support for historically underrepresented small business owners. To date, the firm has invested in the following organizations and initiatives:
- Builders + Backers (Idea Builders): Virtual 3-month program for underrepresented entrepreneurs to get their ideas off the ground;
- Digital Undivided (New C-Suite): Program for female founders of color including mentorship, networking opportunities and PR/marketing sessions;
- Graham & Walker: Intensive 2-week program for female and non-binary founders focused on building skills, pitch readiness, networking and community;
- Greenhouse Scholars’ Young Leaders Program: Entrepreneurship program providing comprehensive support to Greenhouse Scholars alumni in the early stages of their career;
- Project W: 12-week accelerator program for Black and Latinx female founders providing tools, resources and connections to grow their businesses;
- Recast Capital (Enablement): 12-week program for emerging managers in venture focused on building community and providing strategic guidance on firm building and fundraising strategies;
- Syracuse University’s Institute for Veterans & Military Families: Program leveraging the resources and infrastructure of higher education to offer entrepreneurial skills to veterans;
- WE Global Studios: Digital platform helping early-stage female entrepreneurs build scalable businesses through tools, education, resources and community;
- Women Founders Network (Fast Pitch): Competition providing access to capital, visibility and 6-month mentoring program for female founders.
With more than $61 billion of capital under management and administration as of March 31, 2023, Antares is a private credit manager and a leading provider of financing and investment solutions for private equity-backed borrowers and investors. Since its founding in 1996, Antares has built one of the industry’s largest and longest-tenured portfolios of middle market companies and has been recognized by industry organizations as a leading provider of private debt. Through its Asset Management & Funding team, Antares offers investors the opportunity to invest in collateralized loan obligations, funds and separately managed accounts. The company maintains offices in Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and Toronto. Visit Antares at www.antares.com or follow the company on LinkedIn at http://www.linkedin.com/company/antares-capital-lp. Antares Capital is a subsidiary of Antares Holdings LP, (collectively, “Antares”).