“We’ve made a commitment to have fifty-percent-plus women or minorities on our staff going forward,” Kevin Callahan, founding partner of start-up Chicago-based Fairway Capital Management, told PECN this week.
And the firm is off to a good start. Three of its five founding partners are women–Lauren Bozzelli, Laura Milligan and Kathy Wanner. So is its first analyst hire, said Callahan (pictured). PECN first reported on the launch of the firm, which plans to back U.S. venture capital and growth equity funds on behalf of investors, earlier this month.
Many private equity and venture capital executives believe in the importance of diversity and talk about their desire to hire a more diverse cast. But it’s unusual for a firm to set a target, such as hiring at least 50 percent minorities or women. “We wanted to make a statement that we think a diverse team is a good thing,” Callahan said. “It’s going to make us better investors, and it’s going to make us a better firm.”
Don’t look for an immediate, rapid ramp-up at Fairway Capital Management as the firm is still in the early stages of fundraising. Still, the firm is interested in hiring someone on the client services/business development side. The firm would like to secure about $200 million in committed capital, enough to back some 15 funds over a two to three-year period.