CEO’S REPORT (2020Q4)
Three months in and, honestly, it feels like so much longer. Not because it’s been a grind of drudgery, but because it’s hard now to imagine my professional life any other way. I took a little time over the holidays to think about where we’ve been, where we are now, and where we’re going. I’m a stats person, so I wanted to share with you a few numbers that help tell the story of our first quarter of life here at All Places.
Just writing “our clients” feels magical. The day before we launched on October 5, we officially had zero clients. Today I am not overstating when I say that we are thriving. It still takes my breath away a little bit each time someone chooses to sign with All Places--the startup firm with the weird name and the weird website and the weird focus on women. So who are our clients? Without sharing more than they would feel comfortable with, here are some stats:
- New v. old: even split between relationships that preceded All Places and those that have been newly referred to us since we launched.
- Asset managers v. entrepreneurs: 60/40 in favor of money managers, with clients on both sides of the v. also working with us on board matters.
- The other sex: it turns out there are men that want to work with us even though we have a stated focus on women. I’m sure there’s a clever comparison to be made to all the women founders who end up working with de facto male-focused firms, but it’s evading me. 20% of our clients are male-founded.
- Founders of color: 45% of our clients were founded by at least one person of color, which is no surprise given that last year women of color started the vast majority of new businesses.
- Asset classes: from private equity and credit, to venture, to public markets, to real estate, and even a couple of family offices.
- Founder industries: food and beverage, fashion, dental care (but fun and gorgeous), architecture, and manufacturing, nearly all with a focus on sustainability.
- Not all about the money: we are a for-profit firm that also devotes its time to non-profit organizations. We continue to support the New America Alliance (an advocacy organization focused on the Latinx asset management community) and New Destiny Housing Corporation (developing permanent housing for families that have survived domestic violence).
Needless to say, we’re busy. One thing we are looking forward to in 2021: hiring!
In the fourth quarter of 2020 (our only quarter!) we hosted ten events for female asset managers. These events were attended by more than forty women GPs, just the tip of the iceberg. We have even bigger plans for the first quarter of the New Year. In February we will be hosting our first larger group event and in March we are going to launch a new series for our female entrepreneur community. We are also in conversation with a number of like-minded organizations and firms on joint events, all to support women as they grow their businesses without limits!
Press & Partnerships
We had our first feature article in AlphaWeek, which devoted an entire story to the launch of All Places and its unique value proposition. We were also invited to present All Places to an all-star advisory panel of women in finance as part of Alignment Partners’ Venture & Vino series (don’t be fooled by the “vino” part—it was an intimidating roster of heavyweights). Then just last month I was honored to join the Advisory Board of the Brand Incubator Program created by The Outset and Sophia Amoruso. We will be helping to select one female-founded company from Sophia’s Business Class that will have the immense, immense fortune (and we know from personal experience) to work with the world-class marketing and branding team at The Outset.
In The Lean Startup, Eric Ries discusses startup innovation, including “bringing a product or service to a new location or a previously underserved set of customers.” That is how we think of All Places. But we are not just trying to reach the dramatically (and stupidly) underserved female business community, we are also trying to offer them (and any new business) a better model for legal services.
Doing things because “that’s how it’s always been done” or “it’s market” is something we actively work against. The way things have always been done hasn’t worked very well for most of us. I fully expect (and hope) this year will be filled with tons of learning, lots of failures, and continuing to uncover new, better ways to support this community. We are coming for you, 2021!