Divergent Investments Funds Neurodiversity-Focused Startups

By Nicholas Say Nicholas Say has been verified by Muck Rack's editorial team
Published on July 14, 2021

According to Midas Touch newsletter reported, Amol Deshpande, the sole GP behind Divergent Investments, has launched a $10 million fund of his own capital to invest in startups focused on neurodiversity.

Divergent Investments looks to target early-stage companies across the neurodiversity sector including autism, therapies, and treatments for disorders, and related fields such as family-oriented healthcare and education.

8 years ago, Deshpande partnered with Kleiner Perkins to establish Farmers Business Network, his current startup, which helps family farms maximize profits.

7 years ago, when Deshpande’s son was diagnosed with a moderate case of autism at age three, he began plunging into the different interventions and therapies available. His son is now well-being.

Since that time, the form VC noticed that he should help everyone to deal with that situation. Deshpande is seeking startups, led by entrepreneurs committed to the cause for the long haul, making a direct impact on neurodiversity.


According to Deshpande, the current size of the neurodiversity-focused startup market is drastically smaller than other verticals within healthcare no matter how the number of people it impacts.


To date, the fund made nine investments into companies, including Floreo and the edtech Learnfully. Floreo uses virtual reality to help teach social skills to people with autism and related disorders, while Learnfully, founded by his wife, focuses on developing individual education plans.

Divergent Investments is also among several venture funds that are looking to target specific disorders or verticals of the fragmented healthcare system currently.

The firm joins others by saying  like AllerFund, Vinaj Ventures, and JDRF T1D Fund, a nonprofit VC founded by a former Bain Capital managing director.

“There are thousands and thousands getting diagnosed and thousands not even getting diagnosed. I feel a conviction that I have to impact that,”

Deshpande says. “I want to emphasize this is all about the impact of trying to attract more attention to this sector. I hope more entrepreneurs choose this sector and I want them to get funded.”

By Nicholas Say Nicholas Say has been verified by Muck Rack's editorial team

Nicholas Ross Say is a news desk editor at Grit Daily. An award-winning journalist, he covers the daily startup beat. He grew up in Ann Arbor, Michigan and has lived in South America and South East Asia. At present, Nicholas lives in Southern Vietnam where the Sun shines, and the noodles flow like wine. He's written for Blockonomi and Coin Journal, among others.

Read more

More GD News