What is coLABS?
coLABS is an early-stage investment portfolio seeking to invest in bold, innovative, and widely scalable social enterprises that have the potential to dramatically improve the lives of women and girls around the world.
At coLABS, our “gender lens” strategy moves beyond focusing on individual women as leaders. We strategically fund entrepreneurs and early-stage ventures that leverage women, and their critical role in the community, as a core part of their corporate DNA and business model. We believe widening our investment lens will create the greatest impact on quality-of-life for women and girls in these communities.
We provide revenue-share investment capital and seek a healthy return on investment within 3-5 years of investment. To understand more about our investment terms, see the below revenue-share overview and a detailed sample term sheet with explanations.
We are looking for companies that strongly align with our four key criteria.
- Are women central to the growth of your business? Does the issue you’re solving for your community disproportionately affect women/girls?
- Can your company grow wide/fast enough within 5 years to reach new markets or to provide new services/products to your customers?
- How are you bringing something new to the world?
- Have you tested your idea, seen it to be sustainable, and now you’re ready to scale? Is revenue-share the appropriate type of investment capital for your company?
Application Step Descriptions
Pre-Screen: The pre-screen form helps us get acquainted with you and your venture. Please note that due to the volume of pre-screening applications we receive, please allow our team up to 4 weeks to respond to your investment inquiry if an investment committee meeting is approaching. If an investment committee meeting is not within 2 months, we will hold your application in our system until the next investment cycle approaches, which could be longer than 2 months. The most up-to-date investment cycle schedule will be listed on our website application page.
Request For Proposal: A GMC coLABS staff member will be in touch with you if your pre-screening application passes our initial review. At that time, we will invite you to complete a full proposal to be submitted via email to us. A full proposal template can be downloaded on our Learn More page under Application Resources; a guide to completing the proposal is also available to assist you. Please submit a Word document version of your proposal to coLABS; we try to provide feedback and comments where possible for applicants. A proposal guide is here for your reference.
Proposal Refinement: Following submission, our team will review your full pitch proposal and work with you to refine it in preparation for our next Investment Committee meeting (also known as “Bulge”). Note, not all ventures that are invited to complete full proposals will make it to pitching at Bulge. Finalists to pitch will be asked to complete the DISC personal and professional assessment to help our team get to know your team better.
Bulge: We call our Investment Committee meetings “Bulges.” Selected applicants will participate in a virtual Bulge that consists of a short pitch via video call and a Q&A session with our Committee. Template for Bulge pitch provided on Learn More page.
Our team reviews funding applications on a rolling basis throughout the year and makes funding decisions per the schedule online. More Bulge dates will be added in 2018 after the 1st Quarter Bulge.