Meena Harris Launches Venture Capital Firm, Partners With Pakistani American Zabreen Khan
- She launched Phenomenal Ventures with her former Facebook colleague Lin Min.
Entrepreneur, lawyer and author Meena Harris, the niece of Vice President Kamala Devi Harris, has launched Phenomenal Ventures, a venture capital firm with partner Helen Min, a former head of marketing at several leading companies. Harris, 38, told TechCrunch that “the idea for a joint VC firm materialized in 2021. “We feel really confident in our ability to succeed, but also wanted to start modestly and just do the work, despite some of the uncertainty around the economy.”
Harris and Min met as early employees at Facebook, “where they became close friends and eventually tech operators who shared notes on everything from grad school to angel investing,” said the report in the online newspaper focusing on high-tech and startup companies. “We feel really confident in our ability to succeed, but also wanted to start modestly and just do the work, despite some of the uncertainty around the economy,” Harris told TechCrunch.
The firm additionally tapped Pakistani American Zabreen Khan as a partner, who started her investment track at Andreessen Horowitz and Lead Edge Capital. It is looking to fund software enterprises, fintech and commerce startups. It has reportedly invested in 13 companies so far, nine of them started by people from underrepresented communities, TechCrunch reported. Nearly half of the fund’s investors self-identify as women, and 12% as Black.
Harris told TechCrunch that Phenomenal Media and Phenomenal Ventures will operate as two separate legal entities. She launched the media and merchandising company in March 2017 with apparel bearing slogans like “Phenomenal Woman” (based on Maya Angelou’s poem), and with books like “Kamala and Maya’s Big Idea,” about her mother and aunt’s childhood.
In 2021, the company diversified into the entertainment space. Harris told The Hollywood Reporter at the time that the company’s making the move now “because they have built a consumer-facing brand with a loyal, engaged built-in audience that is waiting for the next thing, and has come to be this amazing, vibrant community.”