Kange Kaneene: Increasing the Venture Capital Share of Underrepresented Startups

Kange Kaneene

Ladderworks is a publishing platform of diverse picture books and an online curriculum with the mission to empower over a million kids to become social entrepreneurs. Our current series features interviews by our interplanetary journalist Spiffy with inspiring Social Entrepreneurs, Entrepreneurship Ecosystem Builders, and Changemakers who are advancing the UN SDGs.

Spiffy here with the scoop on the entrepreneurial leaders of Planet Earth. As the only interplanetary journalist stationed on this blue planet, I’m thrilled to present this galactic exclusive with Kange Kaneene, the VP at SAP.iO for North, Latin America, and the Caribbean. Let’s learn about what’s happening at SAP and how Kange is making a positive impact in the world.

Spiffy: Hi Kange, thanks a million for talking to me today. Tell me, what challenge are you addressing through SAP?

Kange: Thanks for having me, Spiffy! Our team is focused on leveraging the most impressive enterprise software startups to fill SAP's portfolio innovation gaps. This allows SAP customers to stay ahead of the curve and gives startups access to SAP's vast customer base of more than 450,000 customers globally. SAP and startups go to market together with a revenue share.

Spiffy: What motivates you to do it?

Kange: I am motivated and inspired by the bravery of the startup founders who are solving some of the most pressing issues. From sustainability, to the future of work, these startups are shaping the future.

Spiffy: What is the impact of your work?

Kange: SAP.iO is focused on ensuring that we have representation across the portfolio to include startups founded by individuals whose share of venture capital in the technology sector is disproportionate in the region where they live. I am proud to say that that population is 45% in the SAP.iO globally and 66% in North America, Latin America, and the Caribbean—the region I am responsible for.

Spiffy: I’d love to hear about a recent organization milestone or initiative, and the impact it makes on your community.

Kange: In 2022, we met our goal to accelerate 200 startups led by underrepresented people in five years six months early. Our data demonstrated that that population tied or surpassed the rest of the portfolio in all important external metrics: the number of unicorns and exits and VC funds raised.

Spiffy: Is there anything else you would love to tell our audience?

Kange: In 2022, SAP.iO expanded to Latin America and the Caribbean. This is a region that has been under invested in for years. We are committed to shining a light on the innovation taking place there and providing more access to opportunity.

Spiffy: Thanks for speaking with me today, Kange—it’s been an honor!

Kange Kaneene is committed to providing access to opportunity by helping overlooked founders scale, supporting education parity, and reducing recidivism. She has a bachelor of science in computer science from University of Michigan and MBA from NYU Stern School of Business. (Nominated by Max Kahn. First published on the Ladderworks website on February 26, 2024.)

The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the interviewee and do not necessarily reflect those of Ladderworks LLC.

© 2024 Ladderworks LLC. Edited by Anushree Nande. Spiffy’s illustration by Shreyas Navare. For the Ladderworks digital curriculum to help K-3 kids advance the UN SDGs, visit Spiffy's Launchpad: Creative Entrepreneurship Workshops for K-3 Kids and their caregivers here.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


Ladderworks is a publishing platform of diverse picture books and digital curriculum, with the mission to enable over a million kids to become social entrepreneurs.

Read Ladderworks' Bio