At a time when independent sponsors are giving private equity firms a run for their money, two investment bankers have teamed up to form a new firm with a distinct approach. Co-founders Chijioke Asomugha and Marques Martin have launched The Inkwell Group LLC to leverage racial and gender diversity.

The firm, based in Washington, DC and Cleveland, Ohio, will look to enhance lower middle-market companies through the addition of diverse executive and boardroom leadership. The firm's investments will target businesses within the healthcare, financial services, industrial manufacturing, and tech, media and telecom industries. On average, The Inkwell Group anticipates investing from $3 million to $30 million in equity to companies with up to $10 million in Ebitda. The firm has yet to make its first investment, however plans to invest on a deal-by-deal basis before establishing its first fund.

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