Dianna joins California Groundbreakers for a panel in Sacramento.

Diann_CalGroundbreakers.jpg
https___cdn.evbuc.com_images_56076878_185630669009_1_original.jpg

Ahead of her trip to New York City to join the Confluence Philanthropy Practitioner’s Gathering, Direct of Acceleration, Dianna Tremblay joined a more local panel in our state’s capital.

On Wednesday, February 27th, Dianna and four other panelists talked about ways in which communities, municipalities and organizations like ICA Fund Good Jobs can work together to lift up small businesses run by people of color.

The hour-plus-long discussion was put on by California Groundbreakers, a group of local activists and leaders billing themselves as “a civic-engagement, community-focused organization putting together panels, interviews, discussions and events focused on cool people doing groundbreaking things”

Joining Dianna were:

  • Nicholas Haystings, executive director of Square Root Academy

  • Michael Jasso, Sacramento’s assistant city manager for innovation, economic development and community development

  • Mariah Lichtenstern, founding partner and managing director of DiverseCity Ventures

  • Tyrone Roderick Williams, director of Sacramento Promise Zone, and director of development for Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency

A podcast recorded at the event is coming soon. You can follow California Groundbreakers here to make sure you’re the first to hear about it. And as always, follow ICA Fund Good Jobs on Twitter and Facebook.

Join us in NYC, find us at the For All Summit, and all the latest from our world.

ICA Fund Good Jobs at Confluence Philanthropy forum in New York City.

Dianna Tremblay, ICA Fund Good Jobs Director of Acceleration.

Dianna Tremblay, ICA Fund Good Jobs Director of Acceleration.

Next week, members of the ICA Fund Good Jobs team will be joining funders, investors, and nonprofit leaders from around the country at the 9th Annual Practitioners Forum in New York City. The gathering will focus on fostering a "critical dialogue around investment strategy and the tools available and needed to create positive change in the world." 

At the gathering, Director of Acceleration, Dianna Tremblay will join Rodney Foxworth, Amy Chung, Alexandra Aquino-Fike, and Ivy Jack on a panel, titled "Becoming Better Allies: A Workshop Racial Equity and Inclusion".

The panel is designed to create a dialogue about the ways in which capital providers and philanthropists can build better partnerships with companies owned by people of color, and is organized by the NIA Community Foundation and Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors. Dianna's panel kicks is Thursday, while the conference kicks off on Monday. 

Also at the gathering: Anand GiridharadasEdgar Villanueva, and ICA Fund Good Jobs friend and former colleague, Nina Robinson

Find the agenda here and register here.

60c84a73-db15-4ee2-b7a5-4f4a5571bf90.jpg

Join us at the #GPTW4ALL Summit in San Francisco.

Starting today, we'll be at the 2019 Great Place to Work For All Summit in San Francisco. Sean, Ingrid, and Kot will attend the For All summit and join leaders from across the country, from businesses big and small, to talk about how entrepreneurs can make their companies the best places to work for everyone. ICA Fund Good Jobs is a Certified Great Place to Work and we can't wait for the start of this year's summit. If you'd like to join, you can still register
 

Obama celebration features ICA Fund Good Jobs companies. 

d5daa71a-6590-4be6-a4eb-a0aa94bfcc7c.jpg

President Barack Obama was in town for the three-day My Brother's Keeper Conference in Oakland. The conference, held at the Scottish Rite Center, was aimed at creating better support systems for boys and young men of color, and was hosted by the Obama Foundation. 

ICA Fund Good Jobs CEO, Sean Daniel Murphy and Board member Jose Corona joined many from the ICA Fund God Jobs Community. 

What's more, the week's events featured many ICA Fund Good Jobs companies! The conference was catered by Accelerator company Red Door Catering, and featured portfolio companies Red Bay Coffee and Back to the Roots. The branding for the entire conference was crated by long-time advisors and creative partners, Oakland-based 510 Media.

170ecd55-9060-47fc-b0e0-64bfd93587f4.png

Save the Date for a marketing webinar on April 5th.

874dde9e-fff7-42f4-b548-c3cd8f117597.png

Join us and our friends at Small Business Majority and Facebook as we navigate the funding landscape for entrepreneurs using Venturize to finance business growth. On April 5th, together we are hosting a webinar for all small business owners interested in raising capital. 

The webinar is titled "Expanding Your Business: Capital to Expand and Expanding Your Reach Using Facebook" and a register link is coming soon. Growing your business also means reaching your intended market so we will provide simple guidelines of how to use Facebook digital marketing content to reach new customers.

The Red Bay Coffee at the company’s roastery and warehouse. (photo courtesy Red Bay Coffee)

The Red Bay Coffee at the company’s roastery and warehouse. (photo courtesy Red Bay Coffee)

Red Bay Coffee celebrates five years! 

2b7b9938-afbc-4d75-bdf8-8d903f0f5f3d.jpg

Congratulations to the Red Bay Coffee team on celebrating their five year anniversary. The Oakland-based coffee roaster and ICA Fund Good Jobs investment company has been serving "beautiful coffee to the people" for half a decade, was recently featured in Sprudge, and has lots of exciting plans in the works. 

Find Red Bay and a least two other ICA Fund Good Jobs companies in Bon Appetit's new guide on shopping local in Oakland. The piece, "How to Spend a Big Fat Weekend in Oakland, California", has a great list of amazing black-owned businesses to patronize in our hometown.  

Kristin Richmond inducted to Alameda Co hall of Fame.

475f38ae-361d-4604-a24d-f6471bd67a9b.png

Kristin Richmond, is CEO of ICA Fund Good Jobs alumni company, Revolution Foods, which she co-founded in 2006 with Kirsten Tobey. On March 30th, Kristin is being inducted into the Alameda County Women's Hall of Fame in the "Business & Professions" category. Kristin joins over 200 distinguished women from Alameda County that have been in inducted since 1993! 

Our good friends at Amalgamated Bank are hosting an event for women entrepreneurs. Join it here: The event will be a great opportunity for any woman-identifying leader who is using their enterprise to create social change. You can register here.

5e37b6e6-9c5e-43f3-ab1f-69959ed72206.jpg

Remembering aManda Greene. 


A community leader and friend passed this month.

aManda Greene's spirit burned bright in the fight for social justice, education reform, and youth empowerment, particularly in the support of young entrepreneurs as Co-Director of @YouthHUBOakland.

aManda was a leader and a friend, and she inspires us to work even harder to create an equitable society. She will be deeply deeply missed. 

For the latest from ICA Fund Good Jobs, follow us on Instagram & Twitter

Fund Good Jobs investment company, Back to the Roots announces Series C raise.

Alejandro Velez, co-founder of Back to the Roots on Yahoo! Finance’s Final Round TV show.

Alejandro Velez, co-founder of Back to the Roots on Yahoo! Finance’s Final Round TV show.

Oakland-based Back to the Roots last week announced that it had closed yet another funding round, this time a Series C round led by Central Garden & Pet and Blue Scorpion Investments.

The company was ICA Fund Good Jobs’ first investment back in 2015 and has seen considerable growth since then. Led by Alejandro Velez and Nikhil Arora the company, which makes aquaponic garden-kits, cereals and other ready-to-grow items under its mission of “undoing food” has now raised close to $20MM and foresees a lot of exciting opportunities in the coming year.

You can check out the official press release about the announcement below, watch Alejandro’s interview on Yahoo! Finance here, and check out the impact of all of our companies here.

Back to the Roots products are distributed in national retailers including The Home Depot, Target, Lowe's, Whole Foods, and the NYC Public School System where it helps feed 1.1M kids per day as the first organic cereal ever offered in US Public Schools. Fund Good Jobs was the company’s first investor and Back to the Roots was Fund Good Jobs’ first investment. Back to the Roots is based in Oakland.

Announcing our newest investment: Onigilly!

Onigilly, a rapidly growing healthy fast food restaurant chain, is the newest addition to the ICA Fund Good Jobs investment portfolio. The investment, a $300,000 convertible note, is the first underwritten by ICA Fund Good Jobs with capital sourced from JPMorgan Chase’s Entrepreneurs of Color Fund.

Onigilly is a fast-casual restaurant chain specializing in Japanese rice balls, called “onigiri.” Koji Kanematsu founded Onigilly in 2007, after noticing a lack of healthy, affordable food options in the United States.

above:    Dianna Tremblay, Aki Kanematsu, Sean Murphy, Caron Gugssa-Howard, and Koji Kanematsu at Onigilly's Palo Alto restaurant.

above: Dianna Tremblay, Aki Kanematsu, Sean Murphy, Caron Gugssa-Howard, and Koji Kanematsu at Onigilly's Palo Alto restaurant.

“In Japan, onigiri is everywhere,” says Kanematsu. “I used to eat it every day because it is convenient, healthy, and affordable. Our mission is to spread healthy fast food nationwide and to improve people’s diet lifestyle.”

This is a powerful opportunity to support business growth, the creation of accessible jobs, and the potential to build wealth for Onigilly employees in San Francisco and across the country
— Sean Daniel Murphy
above:    Koji Kanematsu, Sean Murphy, and Rasheed Mitchell.

above: Koji Kanematsu, Sean Murphy, and Rasheed Mitchell.

The company currently has four locations in San Francisco’s Financial District and recently opened a fifth location in Palo Alto.

“It’s been inspiring to watch Onigilly’s journey unfold over the years,” says Sean Daniel Murphy, CEO of ICA Fund Good Jobs. “We first met Koji, his wife Aki, and the Onigilly team through our partnership with La Cocina, the food business incubator in San Francisco. We have supported Onigilly through our Growth Strategies course led by Michael C. Bush, as well as well as through the Good Jobs Accelerator program led by Dianna Tremblay. Now, through the work of Investment Associate Rasheed Mitchell and key consultant Jonathan Mi, as well as the support of Investment Committee Chair, Jim Harris, we are proud to support Onigilly as investors.”

ICA Fund Good Jobs’ investment will allow the company to invest in machine operations and menu development before a Series A investment round and additional geographic expansion next year. According to Kanematsu, the eventual goal is to open 500 Onigilly restaurants in the United States.

above:    one of Onigilly's onigiri.

above: one of Onigilly's onigiri.

That kind of business growth means job growth as well. What started as a food cart is now a rapidly growing company with 35 employees. Kanematsu has worked with ICA Fund Good Jobs for years to scale his business and create a good jobs plan for his employees. He also wants to create opportunities for employees to share in the wealth created by the growing business.

“To grow, we need to spread a new food and food culture to our customers,” Kanematsu says. “That is very challenging, so our team members are very important. A system for treating them well will be Onigilly’s strength.”

The commitment to taking care of Onigilly’s employees is part of what makes this an attractive investment for ICA Fund Good Jobs.

“This is a powerful opportunity to support business growth, the creation of accessible jobs, and the potential to build wealth for Onigilly employees in San Francisco and across the country,” Murphy says.

ICA Fund Good Jobs invests in high potential businesses through tailored investments and hands on support. In early 2018, ICA Fund Good Jobs partnered with JPMorgan Chase’s Entrepreneurs of Color Fund, along with fellow Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Working Solutions and Pacific Community Ventures. The Entrepreneurs of Color Fund provides capital to these community lenders so they can invest in the growth, profitability, and sustainability of companies owned by people of color in San Francisco. 

2018 – The Year in Good Jobs Headlines:

As 2018 wraps up, let’s look back on a busy year for our team and our companies. Here are some highlights from throughout 2018. 

Click on the text below the images to read the full stories.

ICA Fund Good Jobs welcomes Georgette Bhathena and Justina Lai as New Board Members

Georgette Bhathena

Georgette Bhathena

ICA Fund Good Jobs is pleased to announce the appointment of two new board directors: Justina Lai, Director of Impact Investing at Wetherby Asset Management, and Georgette Bhathena, Director of Bay Area Regional Partnership at the San Francisco Foundation. The leadership and experience of these two women will be tremendous assets as we apply a regional lens to the ICA Fund Good Jobs mission: to invest in high potential businesses and create economic freedom for those who need it most.

Justina Lai.

Justina Lai.

“Starting this year weʼve begun our work to go deeper throughout the nine-county Bay Area. We're building new partnerships, listening to our entrepreneurs, and responding to their needs wherever they are. Having Georgette and Justina’s expertise on the Board is a significant boost to our efforts and a clear win for our mission,” said Sean Daniel Murphy, CEO. 

“We are extremely excited about Justina and Georgette joining our Board. Not only are they passionate about our mission and making a big impact in the Bay Area, they bring a strategic focus and deep experience in the impact investing space that will be hugely valuable to our future,” said Jack Russi, Co-Chairman of the Board. 

Georgette Bhathena’s support of ICA Fund Good Jobs began when she served as Executive Director of Western Region Global Philanthropy at JP Morgan Chase, leading to our current partnership with the bank’s Entrepreneurs of Color Fund.

We are extremely excited about Justina and Georgette joining our Board. Not only are they passionate about our mission and making a big impact in the Bay Area, they bring a strategic focus and deep experience in the impact investing space that will be hugely valuable to our future,
— Jack Russi
Logo_webr_RGB.jpg

In August, Georgette became Director of the Bay Area Regional Partnership at the San Francisco Foundation. The partnership includes TSFF, Facebook, the Ford Foundation, and the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, working together to address the Bay Area’s interconnected and urgent crises in housing, transportation, and economic opportunity. Georgette’s perspective on the ICA Fund Good Jobs board will be invaluable as we work to support entrepreneurship and job creation throughout the region.
 
“ICA Fund Good Jobs is having a powerful impact in the Bay Area to help high potential small businesses accelerate their growth and increase the number of quality jobs. I am eager to help build momentum around its work,” said Georgette.

download.png

We are also excited to add Justina Lai’s impact investing expertise to our board. As Director of Impact Investing at Wetherby Asset Management, Justina harnesses the power of capital to create meaningful social and environmental impact while applying the discipline and rigor of conventional investing.

"I am honored to be joining an organization that has catalyzed the creation of thousands of good jobs in underserved communities for over 20 years,” said Justina. “I look forward to supporting ICA Fund Good Jobs in its ongoing efforts to harness the power of small businesses and impact investment capital to create a more inclusive economy and equitable society.”
 
We are proud to welcome these women to our board, and excited by their deep commitment to creating economic freedom for those who need it the most. We look forward to their guidance as we celebrate the wins of our investment companies, grow the Good Jobs Accelerator, and expand our reach to Bay Area entrepreneurs.
 
Please join us in welcoming Georgette Bhathena and Justina Lai to the ICA Fund Good Jobs Board!