Accelerate Impact: A OneValley blog series dedicated to sustainability and social responsibility in the acceleration industry. This is the fourth article in a four-part series. Read part three here.
Investors are panicking, the odds of a recession are increasing, and startup founders are collectively freaking out. The economy is in a state of flux, with a slowdown seeming imminent. Despite all this, it may be the best time in a generation to found a social impact startup, here’s why:
1. Pre-seed/seed stage funding remains strong
CrunchBase reports that while overall startup funding fell 25% in Q1 relative to last year, seed-stage funding is down only 6% compared to the same period one year prior. In a more recent publication, Crunchbase observed an increase in funding for July 2022 relative to last year. A surprising data point that seems to indicate still have an appetite for funding newer seed-stage startups.
2. It’s a great time to hire talent and find co-founders
For the first time in recent memory, tech employees are being laid off from top-tier companies en masse or having job offers rescinded. The ability to hire talent or partner up with technical co-founders could be the best it's been in years. With reports of top-tier companies rescinding offers, now could be an opportune time to build a team.
3. Government funding and support for social impact is about to be HUGE
The combination of the inflation reduction act and chips plus means that there will be more funding available for impact-related startups than in decades. There will be billions of dollars in tax incentives and non-dilutive funding for early-stage social impact startups. I wrote an in-depth post related to how these bills could kickstart the Third Era of American Infrastructure and lead to the creation of up to 1000 new companies.
4. The world is on fire…literally.
As the planet warms, we’re seeing once-in-a-generation climate disasters become a once-a-year occurrence. This shift is happening faster than anyone predicted. While the economy certainly feels like we’re headed for a rough patch, it’s important not to lose sight of the big picture. We need the best and brightest to step up in the private sector and start companies that can help address the most urgent social and environmental problems of our time. Let’s go!
Alex Fang is the Director of Social Impact at OneValley, where he helps sustainability-minded founders grow their startups.