Investor Network and Startup Accelerator
IW List vs IW Startup
An eligible IWList startup is a mental health, neuroscience, or related startup that is either independent of or a for-profit subsidiary of the Invincible Wellbeing Nonprofit. All organizations accepted into IWList have exclusive access to investors. IW startups also happen to be companies that were started with the intention of helping to fund the long-term mission of the Invincible Wellbeing nonprofit. A company does not have to be an IW startup in order to be a member of IW List.
Create or Invest in an IW Startup
If you're an investor more immediately interested in hedonic products and services being launched in the short-term, then fill in the form above. There is the option to invest in IW startups and/or non-IW startups aligned with IW’s mission.
IW's Basic Research Approach
At Invincible Wellbeing, we're seeking funding for basic research targeting the substrates of suffering. Basic research is a long and difficult process with many financial dead-ends. However, it also arguably has the most potential to shift scientific paradigms.
The strength of industry funded R&D, on the other hand, is the ability to progress more rapidly on cutting edge issues. While IW is focused on far-future research, beyond the edge if you will, we are very supportive of groups attempting to develop more immediately profitable products and services to improve lives here and now.
How can I invest in IW as a shareholder?
Note, we are not lawyers, and this is not legal advice. It may even be wrong, but it's our best understanding of the issue at present. Tax-exempt nonprofit organizations do not have individual shareholders in the profits, because there are no profits. That's why they are granted tax-exempt status.
That said, there are ways to use funds generated from for-profit activities to fund our mission. If you're a potential investor, one approach is to work with us to launch a subsidiary for-profit. For example, our research is chalk-full of potentially profitable business ideas. Even if we don't believe that a business idea is the theoretically optimal path toward abolishing the capacity for suffering across all sentient life, we still may believe that it could be something extremely good for the world, not to mention profitable. Not everybody is best suited to be an academic scientist, and that's a good thing. We need people from all walks of life fighting to abolish suffering with some ships driven by profit and others not.
The Basic Mechanics of Investing in IW
The goal is to be able to raise money for IW's mission while also offering a return to investors. An added bonus is that the subsidiary may also do short-term good in its own right. In the same way that the nonprofit Mozilla Foundation has a stake in the Mozilla Firefox for-profit company, the Invincible Wellbeing nonprofit can have subsidiaries too. A subsidiary is just a company that is 50% or more owned by another entity. The subsidiary has its own board of directors operating with their own fiduciary responsibilities.
This creates the opportunity for founders and investors to generate a return in, for example, technologies closely aligned with IW's mission, while also sharing those profits with the IW nonprofit parent organization. Investors maintain all the rights and privileges that come with investing in any other company.
Protecting IW from Mission Drift
While we are excited about the prospect of making short hedonic gains for humans and non-humans, we also have to be protective of the long-term vision of IW. The aforementioned subsidiary structure protects IW from mission drift by keeping its activities separate from the for-profit's. So, long as the businesses activities are not antithetical to IW's vision, IW does not need to be involved. This prevents IW from being subject to mission drift and the for-profit subsidiary from being run like a nonprofit.
What kind of company can I start and/or invest in?
You can work with us to start and invest in whatever kind of company you want. It could be something like a brain stimulation device, a novel drug, a breathing exercise, an app, therapy services, anything related to Invincible Wellbeing. Then again, it could also be something unrelated: an artisanal bakery, underwater basket weaving classes, an online dating website, etc. This is a great opportunity for those who care about the cause of eliminating suffering but want to start a business instead of working at a nonprofit. It's also a good way to save on taxes, since one can effectively contribute to a nonprofit before generating taxable personal income.