The overturning of Roe v. Wade sent huge shock waves through the US, and while the country is slowly recovering, the venture community is starting to take action. Founders are evaluating where to open their businesses, don’t want to lure workers to a state that doesn’t support reproductive rights, and investors are thinking about encouraging innovation in the space by adding health care to environmental, social and governance criteria.
And as the midterm elections approach, the stakes are only mounting for those who support reproductive access, equality for the LGBTQ+ community, and, in some cases, equality in general. It is imperative to look at the role that the venture plays. Billions are to be deployed throughout the year, and a display of economic prowess is one of the few ways to capture the nation’s attention.
So, we decided to ask eight investors about the failure of Roe, the impact of the Dobbs decision on the venture community at large, and what they think about the investment movement.
Hessie Jones, a partner at MATR Ventures, hits on abortion rights, such as human rights, privacy and poverty. As a result, it will affect how companies conduct due diligence in the future.
“What’s clear is that apps that help women manage their menstrual cycles can be weaponized by the government to identify abortion seekers,” she told TechCrunch. “Due diligence is needed to expand beyond the founder’s ‘goals’ and look at existing customers using the technology.”
According to McKeever Conwell, founder of Rarebreed Ventures, the initial reaction to Roe’s reversal was one of “absolute disgust,” according to several investors we spoke to. He fears it could set a precedent for other cases that could easily be avoided.
“This is a very, very dangerous thing because now we have a group of lifetime appointees that can basically be overturned or set agendas that are not voted on by the people,” Conwell said.
But these political decisions are closely related to the general mantra of venture capital, he says: “Our business is to make money for people, and the people we make the most money for are the people who don’t work.” Pay attention to these rights. This is the reality of the situation.
Read the full survey to learn how these VCs are thinking about investing in reproductive technology, what issues they’re anticipating, and the best way to frame them.