US-based Hello Alice, a machine learning platform that connects small business owners to capital, networks and business services raised US$ 21 million in a Series B funding round on 13 June 2021.
Investors: The Series B round was led by QED Investors with participation from new investors including Backstage Capital, Green Book Ventures, Harbert Growth Partners and How Women Invest. The existing investors of Hello Alice include Silicon Valley Bank, Bumble, Jean Case, Phyllis Newhouse, Courtney Adeleye, Serena Ventures.
Purpose of the funding: The funds raised by the company will be utilized to strengthen its ability to serve small business owners, enhance the predictive capabilities on its platform to personalize learning paths, scale capital deployed to small business owners and launch a mobile application.
About Hello Alice
Founded in 2017 by Carolyn Rodz and Elizabeth Gore, Hello Alice is a free multi-channel platform that guides owners by providing funding, networks, and services. Its partners include enterprise business services, government agencies, and institutions looking to serve small and medium business owners to ensure increasing revenues. Hello Alice is headquartered in Texas, United States.
Last year in April, the startup launched COVID-19 Business Resource Center raising over US$ 20 million in emergency grants and resources for small business owners. The startup’s aim was to support the survival of small business during the pandemic. The largest percentage of those grants went to New Majority owners, prioritizing people of colour and women.
The startup claims to have achieved over 1,100% growth in the past 18 months. It now serves nearly 500,000 small business owners weekly, while increasing revenues by over 600% through its SaaS offering.
What the founders have to say: “These investments signal that despite the recent challenges small business owners have faced, there is an economic tidal wave that will revitalize Main Street, led by the entrepreneurs we serve,” said Elizabeth Gore, Co-Founder and President of Hello Alice.
“We are thrilled to have a cap table as diverse as the business owners we serve,” said Carolyn Rodz, Co-Founder and CEO of Hello Alice. “Our investors are leaders from the Black, Hispanic, LGBTQ+, Women, and US Veteran communities. As a Latina founder and fellow small business owner, I want to ensure that as our company grows, we are fueling future diversity in capital and breaking through ceilings for the benefit of our community.”
What the investors have to say: “Small business owners are the backbone of the U.S. economy, but many fail before they’ve had an opportunity to meaningfully serve the community in which they’re based. Access to both capital and business expertise remain the biggest obstacles for SMBs, challenges heightened for women- and minority-owned businesses. Traditionally, corporations and government grants want to engage and support, but there hasn’t been a source of truth on who can qualify for their diversity grants, funds and programs. Founders Carolyn and Elizabeth and the entire Hello Alice team are having a real, tangible impact on the ecosystem. We are incredibly excited to help them help others.” — Frank Rotman, QED Investors Founding Partner.
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