Frequently Asked Questions

Learn more about the Lab, how to apply and what to expect from the program.

Background and Basics

What is the Morgan Stanley Inclusive Ventures Lab? 

The Morgan Stanley Inclusive Ventures Lab is an intensive five-month accelerator designed to help further develop and scale startups, culminating in a Demo Day and showcase presentation to the investor community.

 

When and why was the Lab started?

Morgan Stanley launched the Inclusive Ventures Lab, formerly known as the Multicultural Innovation Lab, in 2017 in order to address inequities in funding, which our research shows totals more than a trillion dollars.

 

Who leads the Lab team?

Our global team is led by Selma Bueno, Global Head of the Morgan Stanley Inclusive Ventures Group. Bueno has over 20 years of investment banking and capital markets experience. Our Americas team is led by LaToya Wilson. Wilson has over 20 years of experience in private markets and impact investing in both the public and private sectors.  Our EMEA team is led by Sanghamitra Karra. Karra has over 15 years of risk management experience, including in stress testing and investment management. 

 

Where is the Lab based?

The U.S. Lab is based in our office at 750 7th Avenue, New York, New York, and the EMEA Lab is based at 20 Bank Street, Canary Wharf, London.

 

The application form includes a question asking if there is a sustainability component to your business. How do you define sustainability?

The solutions to some of our most pressing global challenges can only be addressed with a concerted effort across all sectors. This year the Inclusive Ventures Lab invites companies whose commercial business models address low-carbon, green or social challenges. These include companies targeting the following themes, among others: climate change, land/freshwater/oceans, pollution (chemicals and air quality), resource use (sustainable consumption), biodiversity and access to services (increased access / low costs for underserved communities).

 

Contact Us

For additional questions about our New York-based program, please use this contact to email us and we’ll get back to you shortly. For questions about our London-based (EMEA) program, please email us here.

Application Details

Who is eligible?

The ideal candidate will meet the following criteria: 

  • Is an underrepresented founder, co-founder, CTO or other C-suite member.
  • Has founded a technology or technology-enabled startup that falls within the Seed to Series A funding round stage.  
  • Has launched product with demonstrated revenues that validate the initial business model and market opportunity. 

 

Do I have to live in or relocate to NYC or London to participate? 

We believe that the value of our program lies in part with the relationships built among the cohort and with the broader Morgan Stanley community. In the past, this required all participants to be on site in our offices for the duration of the program. However, since 2022, Lab activities and events have been operating on a hybrid remote and in-person model. 

 

When are applications open?

We are currently accepting applications for the 2024 Cohort. Applications close March 15th, 2024. Apply now here.

 

Do I have to lead a FinTech company in order to apply?

No. We look for technology or technology-enabled startups across a variety of sectors.

 

When will I hear back about my application?

We aim to contact applicants with next steps within one month after their applications are submitted.

 

I’ve applied to the Lab before. Can I apply again?

We absolutely welcome repeat applications and encourage previous applicants to keep in touch.

 

I am interested in applying to the London-based program. What else do I need to know?

The EMEA MSIVL program launched with a first cohort of five companies in late summer 2022. Read more about it here.  

  

Contact Us

For additional questions about our New York-based program, please use this contact to email us and we’ll get back to you shortly. For questions about our London-based (EMEA) program, please email us here.

What You Can Expect

 

Does Morgan Stanley invest financially in companies that participate in the Lab?

Morgan Stanley will provide participating companies with a cash contribution, a five-month curated program, mentorship, networking, office space for the duration of the program, and access to certain external advisors in exchange for an equity stake of 5.00%. The cash contribution is $250,000 to each company participating in our New York-based program and £250,000 to each company participating in our London-based program. 

 

What does the curriculum cover? 
The curriculum is tailored to suit each individual cohort, but it generally includes such topics as branding your startup, developing your investor pitch, refining your value proposition and devising effective finance and sales strategies. In addition, we offer participants the opportunity to meet with industry experts for one-on-one consultations.

 

What kind of mentorship will I receive from Morgan Stanley?

We pair each company with a Morgan Stanley mentor chosen specifically for their relevant expertise. Your mentor communicates with you regularly and can provide advice and counsel on company growth and scaling your business.

 

Will I be introduced to investors during my time at the Lab?

Morgan Stanley leverages its broad network of clients and investors on behalf of its Lab cohorts, making introductions and connections that aim to grow and scale each company’s business.

 

What is Demo Day?

Demo Day is the culmination of the five-month Lab program, with each founder pitching to an audience of potential investors and clients.

 

Does the Lab team support its portfolio companies after the program is over?

Yes, we stay in contact with former participants and follow their successes, continuing to offer advice and support as needed.

 

Contact Us

For additional questions about our New York-based program, please use this contact to email us and we’ll get back to you shortly. For questions about our London-based (EMEA) program, please email us here.

Explore the Lab

Learn more about the Lab, the companies we work with and how to apply.