Written and Edited by: Alexis Ha
As a brief introduction, Tom Soto is a managing partner and founder of the Diverse Community Impact fund that acts toward sourcing, investing, as well as executing maximum returns to aid the lower middle-market. Among other things, he is also a long time investor in the impact sector, already managing his fourth fund in his career. (Read More!)
In terms of the Bridge Ventilator Consortium, Tom played a huge role in helping the whole consortium get started and get in touch with major players. Governor Gavin Newsom of California was one of them; Introducing the Governor to the BVC team and their ideas would bring attention where it was most needed at the time. Another major partner that Tom contacted was Dan Hart from Virgin Orbit, whose team created a bridge ventilator in collaboration with the BVC (VO ventilator). Within a day, thirty to fifty people were able to collaborate virtually in order to discuss how their collaborative effort could benefit the people of California.
The timely collaboration of the BVC with Tom Soto and his connections were able to provide California with the preventive measures that were available if the necessity of ventilators spiked like it had at the beginning of the pandemic.
In the interview, Tom discusses the impact that Covid-19 has made on the American economy and on his private equity fund. Working on his fourth fund, Tom oversees investments that are geared toward improving the quality of life for others— Aspiration, Revolution Foods, Kabbage. Through Tom’s perspective, the revenues produced by the companies he manages is a direct impact because with proper leadership and guidance, that revenue is used to create a positive influence.
Additionally, Tom examines Covid “head winds” and Covid “tailwinds” in terms of the impact the pandemic has made on our economy/workforce. Some businesses are experiencing a tail wind effect, meaning that the pandemic has positively impacted their businesses: bringing in more customers, more users, more subscribers, etc. On the other hand, many are also experiencing the effects of the “tailwind,” which has made it more challenging for employers to thrive during this unprecedented time period.
“We always come out stronger...it’s the pioneer spirit of who we are!” Tom Soto looks at the brighter side of the pandemic, and how we can learn from this experience to better the future.