Better Ventures is an Oakland venture capital firm that provides funding and support to companies creating scalable solutions to some of the world’s biggest challenges, including re-tooling for a sustainable economy, tackling data-driven health care, and enabling an adaptive workforce. They invest in software, data science, and life sciences startups to deliver profitably and progressively toward the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Better Ventures believes that mission-driven companies will outperform the market. They back pre-seed stage startups and founders who leverage breakthrough innovations in science and technology to build a more sustainable and equitable economy in which both people and planet thrive.
First Quarter: Onsite experiential learning with Better Ventures in Oakland
Start date flexible (remote option available if needed): following selection, join Better Ventures in Oakland for the first quarter in Summer/Fall 2020 (including up to $10,000 travel, accommodation and conference allowance).
Explore Better Venture’s strategic ecosystem and extensive network of assets in evaluating and vetting competitive investment opportunities.
Learn what kind of companies and technologies are considered investable and engage with expert colleagues to understand opportunities in food/agriculture innovation.
Gain invaluable knowledge about what investors look for in entrepreneurs.
Second Quarter: Transition back to UC Davis, splitting time between research and virtual engagement with Better Ventures
At UC Davis: upon second quarter return to Davis, continue to support Better Venture’s efforts in evaluating startups and selecting investable ventures that address selected challenges in the food system, as well as preparing publications that align with research conducted or areas of interest for private or public distribution.
The fellow will work closely with Better Ventures staff through virtual means, but support is provided for regular in-person meetings as needed.
Third and Fourth Quarters: De-risking technology/product/process concept
The selection committee considers applications in accordance with the following criteria:
Resume doctoral research: for remaining two quarters, practice applying Better Ventures learnings to conclude research activities, exploring the greatest impact and best route to market.
Enrich learning: through on-campus Entrepreneurship Academy and businessplan development, identify potential investors and research the target landscape.
Support from: monthly face-to-face meetings with the IIFH (virtual or in-person as needed).
In conclusion: provide a brief report on the results and impact of the fellowship, and present at the annual Innovator Summit.