Fearless Fund today said it has received a multimillion-dollar follow-on investment from Bank of America, Costco and MasterCard for its second fund, though it declined to share how much the new investment was. All of the limited partners in this follow-on investment are returning investors.
Launched in 2019 by Arian Simone, Keshia Knight Pulliam and Ayana Parsons, Fearless Fund invests in early-stage consumer and technology startups founded by women of color. Its portfolio includes Partake Foods, Slutty Vegan and Bread Beauty.
The firm launched Fund 2 last year, and so far has invested in five companies, writing checks of up to $2.5 million. The first fund was $25.8 million, and the second aims to raise at least double that amount.
“We envision the Fearless Fund growing its portfolio of diverse and innovative companies, helping them scale and achieve long-term success,” Simone, who is also the fund’s general partner, told TechCrunch. “We want to bridge the gap for women of color businesses to access venture capital funding and provide them with the necessary support and resources.”
Simone said Fearless Fund also wants to launch more educational initiatives and expand the Fearless Foundation and Get Ready Venture Program to help provide mentorship and knowledge to women founders.
The venture firm said it and Mastercard would host its third annual Fearless Strivers Grant Contest, which awards $20,000 grants to small businesses founded by Black women. The firm will also host its second Fearless VC Summit, with Costco, on August 18 in Atlanta. In addition, it plans to partner with lenders to provide debt financing solutions to small businesses led by women of color.