If your Startup is Series A Ready, SoCal Venture Pipeline Can Find you Investors

By: Sharjeel Sohaib


Sep 21, 2021


SoCal Venture Pipeline

Startups raised over $73 Billion in corporate VC-backed funding in 2020 (up 24% and representing almost 50% of all VC dollars invested), per Andy Wilson of SoCal Venture Pipeline.

SoCal Venture Pipeline, a program by The Alliance for Southern California Innovation (the โ€œAllianceโ€) identifies companies seeking Series A funding and connects them with the right VCs. The program’s creation was inspired by “Connect, a program in San Diego that generated $650 million in Series A funding for startups since 2015.

If you are a startup raising a Series A round of funding ($3M+) in the next 6 to 12 months, SoCal Venture Pipeline’s management can personally introduce you to the right investors. The Pipeline program will help less connected startups to get in front of the right investors.

A Free Service

The SoCal Venture Pipeline does not collect fees or equity from startups or investors. It makes introductions as a free service to bridge the Series-A funding gap holding back the SoCal startups from growing.

As for the program’s growth and sustainability, it is sponsored by Silicon Valley Bank and law firms Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, and KPPB LLP. The Venture Pipeline program will add two to three companies each month aiming to have 20 its first year.

As the region braces for more infrastructure-related developments, from electric vehicles manufacturing to training one million minority coders, we’ll have more startups making it big in the Inland Empire and SoCal’s business ecosystem.

Figuring Out if You are Ready for Series A

To figure out if you meet SoCal Venture Pipeline’s Series A readiness, you need to comply to the following rather simple terms:

  1. Raised at least $500k of angel/seed investment
  2. Dedicated team of at least 3 people
  3. Product in market 
  4. Demonstrated market traction (revenue or users)

Do check out the program’s FAQ page to to get answers to other questions you might have. To apply for the program funding, visit this page.

However, if you are trying to build a mental model of what investors usually look at, or the key markers so to speak, be ready to answer questions around your industry, technology, product, lifecycle stage, and team composition.

  • Two resources might specifically help you. “When to raise a Series A“, an article by Aaron Harris, former partner at Y-Combinator can help you think through some of the factors you need to have in place before raising Series A.
  • Another key resource, a more definitive one is “The fundraising checklist: 13 Proof points for Series A‘ by Pete Flint, a General Partner at NFX, a seed-stage venture firm based in San Francisco.

Back to the Alliance

The Alliance for Southern California Innovation is a not for profit formed in 2017 that has successfully brought together the heft of Southern Californiaโ€™s top research institutions, local business leaders, and world-class advisors

The Alliance aims to bring together SoCal’s talent, ideas, and perspectives for the region’s innovators to bring breakthrough companies to the world.

Apart from the Venture Pipeline, the Alliance runs other programs as well, including:

  • Innovation Communities: Fueling Innovation through Node Development (โ€œFINDโ€) program
  • Corporate Innovation
  • Regional Connectivity

Parting Thought

The need for this program was felt acutely. Dot LA, a startup news website sums this up aptly by writing that “between 2017 and 2020, venture firms made about a third fewer Series A deals in Southern California than seed funding deals, according to a review of Pitchbook data”.

Thus, when VC firms are 30% less likely to participate in Series A of SoCal startups, the Venture Pipeline program might be the exact thing startups need to keep hustling.

You will to prepare early as “the Pipeline hopes that 20% to 30% of the startups will find funding three to nine months” after being selected by the program committee.


  • Avatar Of Sharjeel

    Sharjeel joined Startempire Wire as emerging technologies editor. Earlier, he worked at Silicon Canals, a leading English language technology media source for the Benelux and wider Europe. He covered the European technology and startup ecosystem digging into latest funding rounds of startups.


Submit a Comment

Connecting you with the best startups, people & events in the Inland Empire.

Related Articles

Riverside County Startup Pharm Robotics Headed to the THRIVE Demo . . .

Riverside County Startup Pharm Robotics Headed to the THRIVE Demo . . .

Thrive by SVG Ventures's annual demo day will take place at Inventures on June 1, 2022, in Calgary, Alberta. The annual Demo Day Event highlights entrepreneurs that have been hand-picked to join the company's award-winning Accelerator Program. Pharm Robotics is one of...

Caravanserai Project Calls Mission-driven Innovators in the Inlan . . .

Caravanserai Project Calls Mission-driven Innovators in the Inlan . . .

The Caravanserai Project Social Impact Startup Pitch Competition displays mission-driven innovators from across the Inland Empire who are working to develop and implement irreversible system change solutions to several issues. The competition will be held on May 26th,...

Stay Up On Startempire News

Access Premium Content

Startempire Wire premium content access is free during the beta period of ourย  website.ย  Join during beta and get a grandfathered discount when we launch.

$5 for first month then $15 per month

Get Every Update

Would you like to receive Startempire Wire updates in your inbox? Subscribe below!

"*" indicates required fields

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Follow Us

Follow Startempire Wire on other social media channels.

"*" indicates required fields

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.