Project Entrepreneur

Venture for America Launch

Village Capital Pathways

Overview

Our entrepreneurship initiative drives economic growth by encouraging a more inclusive landscape for underrepresented founders. Through our partnerships and programs, UBS provides entrepreneurs with access to training, capital and networks needed to build their companies, create jobs and contribute to their local communities.

Project Entrepreneur

Mission

Launched in 2015 by UBS and the Rent the Runway Foundation, Project Entrepreneur strives to increase the pipeline of female founders by providing women with the resources they need to ignite bold ideas and build scalable, high-growth companies.

Program Highlights:

  • 1,600 aspiring female founders have been trained in educational symposiums in New York City, Washington, D.C., Austin, Chicago, San Francisco and Los Angeles
  • The venture competition has received over 1,800 applications from female founders of early-stage start-ups
  • 50% of the applicant pool is ethnically diverse, hailing from nearly all 50 states and representing 25 industries including retail and e-commerce, healthcare, human rights, consumer products and fintech

2018 Winners

Entrada ESL

Empowers service industry workers to learn English as they work, using audio & support systems.

Floss Bar

Oral health reimagined through a convenient, affordable and fun way to get basic dental services in major cities.

Leche Lounge

Portable lactation suites empowering women in the workplace by solving a legal mandate.

NaTakallam

Provides refugees/displaced people with anincome by connecting them to remote language teachoing and translation opportunities.

PathSpot Technologies

Protects restaurants and their customers from the treat of food-borne illness

2017 Winners

LOLI Beauty

Blend it yourself clean and green beauty products

The Touchpoint Solution

Neuroscience wearable that alleviates stress

Lace & Liberty

Direct to consumer luxury bespoke bridal wear

2016 Winners

Cake

An app focused on end-of-life decisions

Full Harvest

A B2B platform helping growers bring excess produce to market

Komae

An app that allows parents to exchange free babysitting with friends

Project Entrepreneur Components

Venture Competition

The annual venture competition is for woman founders with a viable prototype or beta in place who aspire to build a high-growth company using technology as a competitive advantage. 200 female founders with the strongest applications will be selected to attend the Project Entrepreneur Intensive.

Digital Hub

The digital hub is Project Entrepreneur's content repository for education modules, articles, blogposts and inspirational videos which help support women at any entrepreneurial stage.

Summit Series

In addition to the Intensive, half day conferences for up to 200 women take place in select cities nationwide providing in-person training and network building.

NYC Intensive & Pitch Competition

The Intensive includes two days of hands-on workshops and engaging keynote speakers, exploring aspects of refining and scaling a business. The Intensive culminates with a pitch competition where finalists pitch to investors, competing for a in the Accelerator program and a $10,000 grant.

Project Entrepreneur Accelerator

The winners of the pitch competition will receive on-site training, introductions to investors, coaching and mentorship as part of the five-week accelerator program hosted at Rent the Runway’s New York headquarters.

Community Advisors

Community Advisors offer insight, inclusion, and engagement to the under-represented populations they support. Current advisors include: Black Founders, Latino Startup Alliance, HBCU Innovation, and Venture for America.

Venture for America Launch

Mission

UBS is investing in the next generation of entrepreneurs through a partnership with Venture for America which helps build a new pathway to entrepreneurship for college grads.

Program Highlights:

  • Significant seed investor/corporate partner bringing talent to startups in 15 cities including: Atlanta, Detriot, Baltimore, San Antonio, and Pittsburgh
  • Lead funder of VFA's launch program and UBS Venture Catalyst Award, providing seed funding for fellow-founded startups
  • $19.6M raised by VFA Fellows after receiving the UBS Venture Catalyst Award

Venture for America is a fellowship program for enterprising recent college graduates to launch their careers as entrepreneurs and revitalize American cities. After five weeks of training, VFA Fellows spend two years in the trenches of a startup in an emerging U.S. city where they learn how to contribute to a high-growth business. Afterwards, VFA provides the mentorship, network and resources Fellows need to become entrepreneurs.

Village Capital Pathways

Mission

UBS and Village Capital launched a pilot program in Philadelphia, Atlanta and Chicago which trains and supports African American, Latinx and female founders to increase their competitiveness for seed-stage venture investment.

Program Highlights:

  • Provides a cohort of founders of early-stage ventures with training to become investment-ready
  • Equips local Entrepreneur Support Organizations (ESOs) with the tools needed to support early-stage startups
  • Founders receive mentorship from UBS advisors and angel investors

Village Capital finds, trains, and invests in entrepreneurs solving real-world problems, and builds communities around entrepreneurs and their ventures to improve opportunities for growth and success.

Other Partners

The Nashville Entrepreneur Center is a Nashville-based hub for entrepreneurs with the environment, tools and connections necessary to create and support a scalable business.

VEDC is a nonprofit certified Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) that is a national leader in non-SBA small business loans and available around the country through a variety of funds.