Erica Duignan Minnihan demystifies the process of raising venture capital
Here are 10 questions for Erica.
Did Erica convince you in her 60 seconds? Will she succeed in eliminating the confusion around raising venture capitol and open the door for entrepreneurs everywhere?
Where are you from?New York City.
Why is your Pitch a game changer? Although women start and lead 38 percent of businesses, they receive only 2 percent of venture funding. Raise Academy is aiming to change that by helping to educate all founders about the many options for raising the capital they need to finance their businesses. We think Raise Academy will be especially helpful to women, who often think they don't fit the "venture model," to understand what investors are looking for and what sources of capital might work best for them.
First job? Investment banking analyst in corporate finance.
Who is your biggest advocate? I am probably my own biggest advocate, followed by my friends from business school (I did my MBA at Columbia) and my kids!
Light bulb moment? I constantly have founders asking to meet me for coffee or lunch to discuss capital strategy. I realized there was a great opportunity to make this scalable by launching an in-person workshop and making it available on-demand using web video streaming technology.
Who inspires you this week? I was inspired by all the great role models who walked in the Carrie Hammer fashion show during New York Fashion Week. Carrie decided to use real, inspirational women instead of runway models to walk in her show. It was great to see so many accomplished women in finance, philanthropy, media, education and other areas of business take on the challenge of walking a runway and owning their own beauty.
Where do you do your best work? I can do my best work anywhere, but generally I do my best work after a good a.m. workout, healthy breakfast and morning meditation session.
Favorite female-led entrepreneurial venture outside your own? I love Little Bits, which is a toy store for kids (of all ages!) that allows them to easily build technology with real hardware. The founder came up with the idea while studying engineering at MIT.
In 10 years you will be… Running the venture capital world.
Guilty pleasure? I rarely feel guilty about pleasures, but everyone knows I love a glass or two of New Zealand sauvingnon blanc.