New Tool Harnesses Power of LGBTQ Entrepreneurs for Economic Development

The StartOut Pride Economic Impact Index (SPEII), released Wednesday (July 15), demonstrates the power of underutilized LGBTQ entrepreneurs in making money and creating jobs in municipalities across the country.

The data shows that in over two of three U.S. metro areas, not a single high-growth entrepreneur identified as LGBTQ. Over the last 20 years, LGBTQ entrepreneurs have collectively raised $5 billion in funding, however only one in 10 received the funding they needed in the past. With this funding and access to resources, over 2 million jobs could have been created by LGBTQ entrepreneurs.

“The launch of the SPEII, two years in the making, could not be more timely,” said Andres Wydler, the executive director of StartOut. “We are immensely proud to offer, with our partners, an actionable tool for decision makers nationwide who recognize the need to include and leverage all entrepreneurial talent that is able and willing to rise to the occasion.”

The SPEII measures three things:

  1. Impact, in terms of jobs created, funding raised, patents filed, and exits by high-growth entrepreneurs; actual measured data and estimated actuals based on a best-in-class peer analysis and the likely number of hidden LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs in each Metro, and an Index number based on these data points.
  2. The achievable, unrealized potential economic impact based on best-in-class peer performance in other Metro areas for the LGBTQ+ population.
  3. Comparisons between actual performance and unrealized potential.

The SPEII is free to use and updated monthly. StartOut’s mission is to increase the number, diversity, and impact of LGBTQ entrepreneurs to drive community development and empowerment.