Morgan Stanley Launches Multicultural Innovation Lab

(3BL Media/Justmeans) - Morgan Stanley has launched an initiative to help startups with a multicultural or woman founder, co-founder or CTO to grow and develop. The Multicultural Innovation Lab will help the incipient companies to get visibility, technical support, connect with stakeholders so they ​can ​accelerate their growth. To quali​fy​, the startups have to be in technology or are technology enabled​ besides being ​in the post-seed to Series A funding rounds.

​​Since July, the companies have been fully immersed in the program working from Morgan Stanley’s global headquarters in New York, where they are receiving all the support they need to speed up their growth. The program will last four motnhs, culminating in an entrepreneurs’ symposium in November where the fledling companies will be exposed to potential investors through showcase format presentations.​

Among the companies selected for the fall 2017 cohort are Deco, GitLinks, Kairos, Landit and Trigger Finance, all of which propose new technology-enabled business models.

Deco, for instance, connects ​buyers and sellers of quality preowned furniture via a peer-to-peer online platform.

Kairos ​taps the power of artificial intelligence to provide integrated facial recognition so companies to "transform brand experiences, increase discoverability and secure their businesses".

GitLinks created an automated software to protect the integrity of open source in application development.

Landit is a platform to increase the success and engagement of women in the workplace.

Trigger Finance created a rules-based investing platform to allow the DIY investor to set “If-Then” statements that can turn any financial or world event into an action on their portfolio.

“The Multicultural Innovation Lab presents a unique opportunity for talented and disruptive startups led by multicultural and women entrepreneurs to increase their visibility and gain access to the capital and collaborations needed to achieve commercial success,” Carla A. Harris, ​head of ​the Multicultural Client Strategy Group​ at ​Morgan Stanley​ said in a statement​.

Several industry luminaries are at hand to advise the selected start-ups. The Entrepreneur-In-Residence is William Crowder, formerly head of Comcast Ventures Catalyst Fund and now founding partner at 42 Venture Partners. He is helping the startups and the Multicultural Client Strategy team to address challenges, achieve better performance and progress. Newark Venture Partners and Techstars are also providing input and expertise.​

Image: Video grab (Morgan Stanley website)