Google for Startups announced the 76 recipients of the $5M Google for Startups Black Founders Fund, which provides promising Black Founders from across the country non-dilutive cash awards to fuel their businesses.
With 35 of the 76 founders coming from Metro Atlanta, Georgia has the highest number of recipients among all states. Georgia-based Black founders will receive $2.35 million of the total $5 million awarded nationally through the Black Founders Fund.
“We are committed to helping Black founders who have been deeply impacted by COVID-19 and who are disproportionately locked out of access to the funding they need to succeed,” says Jewel Burks Solomon, head of Google for Startups US. “By combining cash awards with Google for Startups mentorship and programming, we hope to help create a more level playing field for these founders, who are building amazing companies and making an impact on their communities.”
The Google for Startups Black Founders Fund was announced in June as part of Google’s company-wide racial equality commitments. Unlike equity dependent funds, non-dilutive cash awards allow founders to make meaningful updates to their business with no strings attached. In line with Google for Startups’s mission, these founders will also receive the best of Google’s technical resources, people, and best practices, through future Google for Startups programming.
“Black founders and startups are essential to innovation and technology advancement across the state,” said Georgia Lt. Governor Geoff Duncan. “We applaud Google for its continued investment in Georgia’s business owners and founders — helping us further solidify our state’s identity as the Technology Capital of the East Coast and one of the top states for business.”
Atlanta-based Goodie Nation, a nonprofit organization that facilitates and accelerates social capital opportunities to help fill the funding gap for diverse founders and social entrepreneurs, will manage the distribution of $5 million in cash awards for Black Founders Fund recipients nationwide.
“The Black Founders Fund has the potential to change the trajectory of Black entrepreneurship in Atlanta and across the country,” said Joey Womack, CEO of Goodie Nation. “We are honored to work with Google for Startups to bring our expertise of providing business connections to accelerate growth, mentoring, peer-accountability, best practice sharing, and a community for founder support.”
Said Aaron Fender, founder of Portrait Coffee, a specialty coffee company leveraging excellent product and hospitality to reimagine Black representation in the industry: “The Google for Startups Black Founders Fund will have a considerable impact on the growth of Portrait Coffee. This capital and support come at a critical time, allowing us to hire more team members and purchase additional manufacturing equipment to support our growing business.”
Georgia-based Black Founders Fund recipients:
- Brown Toy Box
- Clubba (by Usit Inc.)
- Film Connx
- Healthy Hip Hop
- Infiltron Software Suite
- Jax Rideshare Rentals
- Just Add Honey
- Laine London
- Latched and Hooked Beauty
- Make Music Count
- Mar Dat
- Music Tech Works
- Optimal Technology Corporation
- Origyn, PBC
- Pharaoh’s Conclave
- Portrait Coffee
- U Scope Technologies
- Vibe Ride
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