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Speaker, Arlan Hamilton

Arlan Hamilton

Founder and Managing Partner, Backstage Capital

Arlan Hamilton is disrupting the Silicon Valley status quo. The self-taught VC built her $5 million venture fund, Backstage Capital, three years ago, from the ground up, when she was homeless (!) and has since invested more than $4 million in over 80 companies led by underrepresented founders. “I’m extremely interested in diversity in tech – moving the needle, kicking the needle’s ass  –  when it comes to people of colour, women and LGBT, since I am all three,” she’s said. Backstage Capital is dedicated democratizing access to financial mentorship and minimizing investment disparities by funding underestimated entrepreneurs. A study of 60,000 startups found female CEOs receive 2.7% of available VC funding, while women of colour receive 0.2%. At Backstage Capital, 72% of founders are POC, 62% are women, 44% are women of colour and 12% identify as LGBTQ+. Seeing potential by casting a wider net, Arlan is an expert in finding profitable investments that cater to underserved markets. Her work has become so successful in the Valley that it’s been dubbed “The Arlan Network Effect.”