Ashley Flucas: Driving Diversity in the Venture Capital Investment Space
Hi folks! I’m Spiffy, your interplanetary journalist reporting from Planet Earth, back with a new guest. Ashley Flucas, founder and general partner of Flucas Ventures, is committed to making a difference in the world. Let’s see how she’s doing it!
Spiffy: Hi Ashley, thanks a million for talking to me today. Tell me, what challenge are you addressing at Flucas Ventures?
Ashley: Thanks for having me, Spiffy! I am a venture capital investor. Through Flucas Ventures, I invest money in startups (companies that are early on in their journey, but have the potential to be large, impactful companies one day). Some of the companies that are a big part of your everyday life were once startups that once upon a time needed investment from people like me to grow their business—like Uber, Snapchat, or Facebook.
Spiffy: What motivated you to do it?
Ashley: Venture capital investment is a form of an investment that can create generational wealth, but that has traditionally not been very diverse. I wanted to be a part of driving change in the industry and, hopefully, serve as an example that anything is possible if you work hard enough and open doors for others.
Spiffy: Ah that’s wonderful! Can you elaborate on how you and the organization are working towards a more equitable world?
Ashley: I invite a diverse group of people to invest in the same deals as me via my "syndicate." This gives people of all backgrounds access to invest in top deals alongside some of the top investors in the world without needing to have made those connections themselves. It is my hope that access can diversify who is getting access to these wealth-creating opportunities and will empower a new group of checkwriters with the track record and experience to fund the companies, causes, and founders they care most about.
Spiffy: Tell me about a recent company milestone and the impact it makes on your community.
Ashley: I now have crossed 3,000 investors who have the opportunity to invest alongside me (3,300 and counting) and we have deployed more than $75,000,000 into startups in less than two years. The impact is that it shows that more access is being granted and more opportunity is being created.
Spiffy: Tell me about a startup or project you’ve worked with that exemplifies the impact you’re striving to make.
Ashley: Yummy is a good example. It is an investment I made outside of the U.S. in a country (Venezuela) that had not typically attracted venture capital investment. Now, they are flourishing and growing all across South America, creating jobs and impacting consumers’ lives for the better. And the investors who invested alongside me have been able to see the value of their investment grow incredibly fast and make a global impact.
Spiffy: Thanks for speaking with me today, Ashley—it’s been an honor!
Ashley Flucas (Duke '08, Harvard Law '11) has invested in more than 275 startups. She is the head of Flucas Ventures, a syndicate of more than 3,000 venture capital investors (and growing). She serves as a partner at a South Florida-based real-estate finance fund. (First published on the Ladderworks website on May 2, 2022.)
© 2022 Ladderworks LLC. Edited by Anushree Nande. Spiffy’s illustration by Shreyas Navare. For the Ladderworks digital curriculum to help K-3 kids advance the UN SDGs, visit Spiffy's Corner here.