Bringing Diversity to Venture Capital
On a daily basis, I get inquiries on and around the world of venture capital (VC) and Backstage Capital. So, when Mario Avila, an aspiring VC, reached out to me and expressed interest in typing up a few questions that could help many others, I took him up on it. I told Mario I’d answer his questions and post them on Medium.
In this post, we explore my role as a Principal, diversity in venture capital, portfolio management, and how to break into venture capital.
Mario: Thank you for taking the time today to answer some of my questions. Before we begin, can you please share a little bit about your background and how you found your way to Backstage Capital. Which personal traits have helped you excel in your work?
Lolita: As you may have read in the Wall Street Journal, “immigrants have started more than half of the current crop of US-based startups valued at $1 billion or more.” I don’t think that’s a coincidence. In fact, I believe that the string of characteristics that come from an immigrant upbringing have helped build the 40+ unicorns and have helped me get to where I am.
I credit my tech and VC success to the values my immigrant parents taught me: persistence, extraordinary work-ethic, and a strong belief in the American Dream. My parents had to work multiple jobs and keep dreaming of a better life. They told me I would have a better life. And somewhere in between, they made me believe that I could do anything I set my mind to.
It is with this immigrant-inspired confidence that I set out to live a life as a venture capitalist where I invest in the future of tech and faces of leadership.
👩🏽🎤 Action: Learn more about the Backstage Capital team by visiting our Crew page.
The Role of Principal
Mario: The business of venture capital involves investing in startups, managing the current portfolio, and balancing operational cash flow. As a Principal at Backstage, does your role involve all three aspects of the venture capital business: working with portfolio companies, sourcing new deals, and fundraising?