Since 2016 we’ve accelerated 103 Bay Area businesses and invested over $10M with 90 cents of every dollar going to women or people of color.
These founders are on their way to growing community-serving businesses that create good jobs and a thriving local economy.
Over the next 5 years, we’ll be raising and deploying our next $25M to grow Bay Area businesses and close the gender and racial wealth gap.
Our investments are structured to build wealth at a community-level.
Our funding approach enables small business entrepreneurs to prioritize creating good jobs, workforce diversity, and employee wealth as they grow.
When we invest with the ICA Impact Note, we return equity percentages back to the founder as they achieve these wealth building metrics, bringing investor and founder into true partnership for impact.
The Lab at ICA is our accelerator for seed-stage businesses and is paired with access to capital from the ICA Seed Fund. Each year, two intimate cohorts work with ICA over the course of three months to grow and develop their businesses in a safe, supportive environment. Thirty-eight seed-stage companies have graduated from the Lab since the program launched in 2021.Learn more about The Lab at ICA
In 2022, companies in the Lab saw an average of
100% of companies in the Lab are run by women or people of color.
Low-cost, flexible capital is often not available to early-stage founders, outside of a ‘friends and family round,’ which are less accessible to Black, Brown, and other people of color due to lower levels of generational wealth caused by systemic inequality.
At ICA, companies become eligible to apply for equity investment from the ICA Seed Fund after graduating from the Lab. This type of capital is critical for underrepresented founders and — paired with ICA’s ongoing supportive services — helps founders get their businesses off the ground at a critical juncture.
$875K deployed to early-stage businesses from the ICA Seed Fund since 2021.
100% of every dollar went to businesses run by women or people of color.
The Accelerator at ICA is a game-changer for entrepreneurs who want to grow their business and make a positive impact on their communities.
The Accelerator provides coaching, connections, and capital to help entrepreneurs scale their business in community with each other and our network of top-notch instructors and advisors. Participating entrepreneurs meet weekly for 4 months in intimate cohort-based workshops, and each entrepreneur is paired with a strategic advisor who works with them 1-on-1.
Sixty-five companies have graduated from the Accelerator since the program launched in 2016.
In 2022, Accelerator companies saw a average of 66% year-over-year growth.
87% of Accelerator companies are run by women or people of color.
ICA has deployed $9.2M to 22 growth-stage companies since 2012, with $6.4M deployed since 2021, when we launched the ICA Growth Fund. 82% of the capital invested was the first institutional funding ever received by the companies, and our investments have catalyzed at least $109M in additional funding.
Once companies graduate from our programs, they join the ICA alumni network, which includes Lab and Accelerator program graduates, as well as companies that engaged with ICA in earlier iterations of our model. All of these companies have access to our ongoing workshops, quarterly mixers, monthly opportunities resource hub, and ongoing 1-on-1 strategic advising as needed.
Sixty-eight companies have graduated from the Accelerator since the program launched in 2016.
In 2022, ICA launched the Shared Services pilot to bring HR and financial administration services to entrepreneurs at a reduced cost from trusted professionals in the ICA network. In our first year, 54 companies took advantage of the services, and we will grow the pilot into a program in 2023.
Our funding approach helps entrepreneurs to prioritize creating good jobs, workforce diversity, and employee wealth as they grow. ICA minimizes our ownership stake, so founders can continue to grow their business for community social impact.
In 2022 ICA portfolio companies retained 332 jobs with an average wage of $34.54/hour.
In 2022, we introduced the ICA Impact Note, our investment vehicle that returns equity percentages back to founders as they achieve employee wealth building metrics. As companies meet these impact milestones, the investor returns equity ownership percentages back to the company.Learn more about ICA Impact Note
As an early-stage investor, we recognize that it takes time for businesses to grow and make a positive impact in terms of job creation and community wealth building. In 2021, we significantly increased our investments, and we look forward to seeing the long-term effects of these efforts. A great example of our impact is Firebrand Artisan Breads, a company we have worked with for over a decade. Our coaching, connections, and capital have helped Firebrand create good jobs and build wealth in their community.Read the Firebrand Case Study
“ICA has been a valuable partner as we learn about how small businesses led by people of color can create economic mobility and wealth. Their work to create family-sustaining jobs and build wealth for workers is a great example of how we can build a more equitable economy.””
“The Surdna Foundation’s Inclusive Economies program is thrilled to continue our partnership with ICA as they develop and test innovative financial products in response to the needs of historically marginalized entrepreneurs. ICA’s commitment is not only to be a stalwart for entrepreneurs but to be a critical partner in strengthening the entrepreneurial ecosystem of the Bay Area.”
“ICA is a dynamic, community-centered organization that responds and adapts to the needs of its clients. The eBay Foundation is proud to support their efforts and commitment to driving bold and transformative change within the small business ecosystem. Our partnership with ICA is highly valued, and we are amazed by their meaningful and sustained impact.”
Our Impact Reports
Help accelerate great Bay Area businesses and create wealth in our community.
Put a business pro in your corner. Get 1:1 business advising to address your specific business through access to the Bay Area’s most experienced and engaged advisors.
Your experience is invaluable. At ICA, our advisors play a pivotal role in supporting our clients’ growth, help spark local innovation, and give back to the community in powerful ways.
The businesses in which ICA invests are successful companies committed to growth, good jobs, and wealth creation and with your help they are poised for long-term success.
Sign-up for the ICA Fund Newsletter to know when program applications open, meet ICA companies, and learn about our unique impact investing practice