The BFM Fund (Black Founders Matter), a Portland-based, seed-stage venture fund focused on Black and innovative founders, is slated to receive investment from Bank of America.
Led by a full women of color leadership team, The BFM Fund will allocate Bank of America’s investment into Black founders across various verticals within the United States.
Current companies within The BFM Fund’s portfolio include Saysh, Allyson Felix’s footwear and apparel brand; Hued, a healthcare startup in partnership with Serena Williams and Glow Up Games, a mobile-game companion to HBO’s hit television series, “Insecure.”
While the total investment amount is not disclosed, Bank of America became a significant investor in The BFM Fund’s first close.
“I’ve been so energized to work with such an outstanding team at Bank of America over the last few months,” said BFM Fund’s Managing Director, Himalaya Rao-Potlapally.
“It’s been so encouraging to see global financial institutions like Bank of America having such passion and follow through in their commitment to creating economic equity within venture capital.
I’m excited to see other financial institutions take Bank of America’s lead in supporting the next generation of diverse fund managers, who are more representative of the broad spectrum of startup founders that exist.
When global organizations like Bank of America remain steadfast in their mission to create economic equity through capital redistribution and supporting diverse fund managers, other financial institutions, venture capital firms and potential investors will follow suit. That cannot be understated.”
“Bank of America’s equity investment in The BFM Fund underpins our commitment to scale positive change and drive economic opportunity by addressing pervasive funding gaps for minority-owned and led businesses, entrepreneurs and innovators,” said Roger Hinshaw, Bank of America Oregon and Southwest President.
“By providing growth capital and support to diverse entrepreneurs, The BFM Fund will open new doors to greater economic growth and wealth creation within an underserved segment of the economy.”
The extensive process required a comprehensive review of BFM Fund’s legal, financial, thesis documentation and standing. The BFM Fund joins an impressive and growing roster of more than 100 BIPOC, women-owned and LGBTQ+ funds hand-selected by Bank of America since 2022.
“Funder representation is a critical piece to facilitating systemic change in capital allocation,” stated Rao-Potlapally. “We’re here to do the work that needs to be done and we’re grateful for Bank of America’s belief, support, and commitment to creating more equitable outcomes.”