About VilCap

Village Capital improves entrepreneurial success with social ventures and accelerates the impact investing space by building peer support organizations for entrepreneurs in cities throughout the world. Inspired by early microfinance lending groups, where entrepreneurs select loan recipients from their own group, VilCap “crowd-sources” the most investable companies for investor partners.

VilCap was incubated in First Light Ventures, which is a sister enterprise to seed investing firm Gray Ghost Ventures. VilCap piloted in 2010 with pilots in Mumbai, Boulder, New Orleans, and the Bay Area. The program has had over 500 applications. Out of 82 participating enterprises, ten received investment. We found the following early results:

Improved Companies.
83% of entrepreneurs said their enterprise improved as a result of VilCap. One professional investor observing the Bay Area pilot said that the number of investable enterprises increased from zero at the beginning to twelve at the end.
Entrepreneurs Find Value Beyond Investment.
98% of participants would recommend program to peers, and 90% plan meet weekly post-program.
Lowered Cost of Seed-Stage Investing.
For a program cost of $65,000, The VilCap network sourced 500 potential deals and invested in 10.
Industry Recognizing Program Value.
Program cited as “#1 Trend to Watch in 2010” on Change.org; featured in Wall Street Journal, Inc. Magazine, Beyond Profit, and Social Capital Markets
Entrepreneurs Achieve Post-Program Success.
VilCap enterprises have received validation in the business-plan competition circuit, winning 4 since the close of the first round of pilots.

VilCap participants have had the following experiences:
Testimony from Entrepreneurs:
· “I learned more in two months of WCVC than I did in two years receiving my MBA.”
· “The change I see in me and the confidence in the business plan by others is a benefit which exceeds the actual investment receivable from the program.”
· “The accountability of facing my peers weekly made my business much stronger.”
· “Everyone should have to go through this process. Provides “on the job” training!”
· “Great opportunity to get out of the day to day of the business, connect with other social entrepreneurs, and to think strategically.”

Testimony from Investors:
· “At the beginning of WCVC, I wouldn’t have invested in any of these enterprises. Now, I’d consider 10-12 of them.”
· “The power of Village Capital is in the way peer entrepreneurs demand performance and practicality from each other; because they care relentlessly, it is as if they hail from Missouri and persist in the requirement to ‘Show Me’…”

The VilCap team:
Bob Pattillo, Chairman
Bob Pattillo founded Gray Ghost Ventures in 2003 as a microfinance equity fund. Before GGV, Bob ran Pattillo Properties, which he grew to one of the top ten industrial real estate firms in the U.S. He began working in microfinance in 1998 and sold his company in 2003 to focus solely on social investment and enterprise development.The success of Gray Ghost in microfinance led Bob to begin investing in SME enterprises serving low-income customers. Bob has invested in over 160 microfinance banks and 30 SME enterprises, including D.Light Design and Cell Bazaar. Bob started First Light Ventures in 2009 and serves as its CEO.

Ross Baird, Director
Ross has developed and managed VilCap within First Light Ventures over the past year. He has emerging market enterprise experience working with the Indian School Finance Company, a GGV investee and has independently founded two organizations, Georgia PACE and Vote From Home, that utilized technology to increase and mobilize civic participation. He has an MPhil from the University of Oxford and a BA from the University of Virginia. He is also a Marshall Scholar and Truman Scholar.

Sean Foote, Venture Partner
Sean Foote helped create est Coast Village Capital in the Bay Area and plans to assist in the opening and operation of new VilCap programs. For the past ten years, Sean has served as a partner at Labrador Ventures, a Silicon Valley-based VC firm. He also serves on the faculty at UC Berkeley Haas School of Business, where he teaches venture capital and microfinance. Sean has also co-founded Toniic, a network of impact investors in the Bay Area. Sean received his undergraduate degree from University of Missouri-Rolla and his MBA from the University of Virginia’s Darden Graduate School of Business.

April Newman, Venture Partner
April has helped operate the West Coast Village Capital in the Bay Area and plans to assist in the opening and operation of future VilCap programs. April has been engaged in the impact investing space beyond VilCap as the interim executive director of the Silicon Valley Microfinance Network, a volunteer with Kiva, and a project director for a microfinance textbook. April also has worked on the ground in Brazil. She has a MPP from UCLA and a BS from Tufts University.

John Hardman, Investment Manager, First Light Ventures
As First Light’s Investment Manager, John oversees VilCap’s development as well as its portfolio investments. Before First Light Ventures, John practiced as a corporate attorney and worked in financial management. John’s international experience ranges from serving as a faculty member in the Dominican Republic to serving as an election monitor for the Carter Center in Nepal. John has a JD from the University of Virginia and an MBA from INSEAD.

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