8 Startups Have Been Chosen For Morgan Stanley’s Summer 2021 Cohort of Multicultural Innovation Lab


American multinational investment and financial services company Morgan Stanley has announced the 8 startups that will participate in its Summer 2021 Multicultural Innovation Lab (MCIL).

All the startups selected by the firm have implemented innovative strategies across sectors such as healthcare, media, marketplace, fintech, enterprise software, and retail tech. The startups that will participate in the program are Stimulus, Sozie, Cognicor, Fyt Personal Training, Productions.com, Playlister Club, Lifesaver, and MedTrans Go.

Introduced in 2017 by Morgan Stanley, MCIL is an intensive five-month accelerator program for supporting technology and technology-enabled startups through funding rounds ranging from post‐seed to Series. The program is entering its sixth year and targets startups with a multicultural or woman founder, co‐founder, CTO, or other C-suite members that are developing innovative solutions across sectors.

To date, a total of 51 startups have participated in the program, which has proven successful through the result of company acquisitions and additional funding rounds once participants finish the program. Morgan Stanley invests in these early-stage companies and continues to support each founder’s growth and development thanks to its ecosystem of internal and external partners.

The team is co-led by Carla Harris, vice chairman and managing director at Morgan Stanley, and Alice Vilma, managing director. Both have over 50 years of experience in equity syndicate, investment banking, structured finance, and capital markets sectors. Carla Harris referred to the selection by stating:

“Welcoming another cohort to our growing portfolio of companies is another step forward in the effort to close the funding gap for diverse founders that exists in the marketplace today. I am excited to hit the ground running to work with these talented founders, having witnessed first-hand the tremendous success of the program in bringing these businesses to scale.”

The summer 2021 program commences from August 16 to January 2022, culminating in the sixth Multicultural Innovation Lab Showcase and Demo Day to potential investors. The participating startup will not only operate in a hybrid environment, using online video platforms to facilitate the Lab curriculum and convening in-person to foster community but will also be supported by the experience of Morgan Stanley’s team to drive their companies into the future.

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