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Frequently asked questions

Investment Process

How will you evaluate the funds seeking funding from Screendoor?
Evaluation criteria will include a review of investment thesis; relevance of the GP(s) and investment team experience; ethics that are consistent with Screendoor’s commitment to being a supportive member of the technology community; and investment track record to date (if available).
How are investment decisions made?
Screendoor investment decisions will be made by its Investment Committee, which is composed of representatives from both the venture capital and institutional investor coalition. Investments will be made on a rolling basis.
Screendoor says it’s focused on ‘underrepresented’ groups. Can you be more specific?
The majority of venture capital today is in the hands of men, specifically those from Caucasian or Asian backgrounds. Individuals outside of these demographics are quantitatively underrepresented in our industry. That said, we understand that identity is a broad and complex conversation and don’t want to preclude applicants from helping us understand why their background would help Screendoor accomplish its mission. Accordingly we welcome interest from all emerging managers.

Screendoor Investors & Financials

Who gave Screendoor the money to invest?
Screendoor is backed by a significant number of major institutions, all of whom have deep commitment to the venture capital ecosystem (and many of whom are already investors in the Venture Advisors’ firms). Founding investors include  Davidson College, DUMAC, Hall Capital, Harvard Management Company, The James Irvine Foundation, University of Michigan, Princeton University, Sapphire Partners and University of Virginia Investment Management Company (as well as several similar institutions who remain private for now). All of the founding Venture Advisors have also invested their own personal capital into Screendoor.
Wouldn’t these LPs have backed emerging managers anyway? Why did they choose to go through Screendoor?
Institutional LPs are often managing hundreds of millions or billions of dollars and their venture commitments are made over the course of years. Smaller funds and emerging managers are often too small or too new to fit their direct investment strategy, but they know there is opportunity for significant returns from this segment. Accordingly they are utilizing Screendoor to reach underrepresented managers early in their lifecycles and to build relationships that can one day become direct, if mutually beneficial. The capital Screendoor has raised is additive to the dollars which would be expected to flow to underrepresented managers, not just shifting the sum from one deployment entity to another.
When will you raise Screendoor 2? Can I invest?
We have the ability to raise additional capital for the current incarnation of Screendoor, although we believe that the initial $50m+ is largely sufficient to achieve our goals and operations. That said, we’re always open to hearing from institutional investors (and similar parties) who are interested in supporting this effort. Please contact us here.
Who makes money from Screendoor?
The LPs. The Venture Advisors do not take any management fees or carry from profits of Screendoor. While Venture Advisors may choose to invest in Screendoor (all founding ones have done so), this is not about profiting ahead of the mission and goals of the coalition.
Is Screendoor a philanthropic effort?
No. Our LPs expect financial returns in line with their other venture capital firm investments and we intend to exceed those expectations.
Are you hiring?
We are currently not hiring at this time.

Community and Mentorship

What does Screendoor provide in addition to capital?
Just as we benefited from the mentorship of more experienced VCs when starting our firms, we want to pay it forward with counsel in addition to capital. All firms backed by Screendoor will be paired with Venture Advisors for ongoing relationships, in addition to having access to community tools bringing all of us together virtually. Screendoor LPs and partners will also be hands-on in the expertise and guidance offered. Our goal is to help emerging managers build their firms for the long run.
Glad to hear about Screendoor but there are many other groups also working on diversity in venture capital. Are you open to collaborating with them?
Absolutely. Our goal is to be a piece of the puzzle and definitely not ignore the fact that many wonderful professionals have been doing the hard work on these issues for years. We’re not going to assume we know it all or that we’re going to get 100% of this correct right out of the gate. But you can know we’ll approach Screendoor with solid intentions and openness to learning.
Why the name Screendoor?
Hospitality and openness. Screendoor Venture Advisor and Investment Committee Member Satya Patel (of Homebrew) put it into his own words: 

"Growing up in the heat of Las Vegas, screendoors were a feature of many homes. They were essential for letting the breeze in while still protecting the home. But most importantly, they were an invitation to come in and get respite from the heat. In our neighborhood, if you could peer into a house through the screendoor, it was a sign that you were welcome to come grab a cold drink, use the bathroom or just get a few minutes of cooler air. The “thwack” of a screendoor would announce you were coming in, and the reception was always one of warmth, safety and sustenance. With Screendoor, we hope to provide that same welcome and feeling to the next-generation of investors who will redefine the tech and VC industries."