Welcome back to The Sunstone Way.
In the last couple weeks, new startup companies have been selected to go through the training programs at our two accelerator partners – the Long Beach Accelerator (LBA) in Long Beach, Calif., and Lair East Labs (LEL) in New York City. That gives me the opportunity to talk about another of our Sunstone Why’s; we exist to provide economic opportunity by supporting startup and small businesses.
Economic opportunity means different things to different people. It starts with the basics – the opportunity to provide food and shelter for ourselves and our families. Once that is handled, though, there is a deep-seated need in most of us to have meaningful work that makes a difference in our lives and our communities.
We call it the American Dream. There’s a reason the United States is called the Land of Opportunity. People here have a chance to create something new, and to call it their own.
Making It Happen
That’s not as easy as it once was, though. We live in a big, complex society, and it takes more than just desire to make a dream come true. To create a company, it takes a good idea, business expertise, enough money to get started and, 99 times out of 100, some help.
John Shen, who founded Sunstone Management along with American Lending Center and other affiliated companies, talks about that journey in his new book, “Crossing The Swamp” (available on Amazon and at crossingtheswamp.com). In that book, he also talks about his passion for providing help to new entrepreneurs.
It’s a big reason why Sunstone exists, and why we say we are founder-focused as a company. We provide help in those very early startup stages of a business’s life, when support is critical.
Who We Will Be Helping
The Summer 2023 cohorts at LEL and LBA offer a good picture of the types of companies these young entrepreneurs are creating, and the fields where innovation is most active.
The New York City cohort is strong on information technology, and four of the nine are using some form of Artificial Intelligence to advance their effort. The founders are from literally all over the world. They are offering everything from financial management approaches to an AI-enabled personal assistant for those with medical needs.
In Long Beach, there is a wide range of proposed business plans, with some connecting community segments to services from mental health to vintage clothing. Diversity will remain a hallmark of the LBA founders – more than half are minority- and/or women-owned.
These innovative companies, like those we have supported before them, add vibrancy, diversity, and energy to the communities they join. Sunstone enriches their lives through opportunity and enriches our community at the same time.
That’s another of the Sunstone Why’s. And it is The Sunstone Way.
CEO & Managing Partner
Sunstone Management Inc.
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More About Sunstone Management
Sunstone Management is a diversified private capital management firm with headquarters in Southern California that provides a range of early-stage venture capital, real estate, and fixed income funds to qualified and accredited investors. The firm delivers new and exciting options for economic growth through innovative public-private partnerships, making use of its unique experience across government, education, and private sectors. Identified by Financial Times as one of America’s Fastest Growing Companies three years in a row. Connect with Sunstone Management at: