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Power of the Black dollar: Funding entrepreneurs in tech

Black entrepreneurs in sectors like tech have historically faced disproportionate funding challenges that further stifle innovation for everyone.
Power of the Black dollar: Funding entrepreneurs in tech
Posted at 4:12 PM, Feb 22, 2024

As the number of Black-owned small businesses in the U.S. continues to increase, the people behind operations at that level aren't the only entrepreneurs that face challenges with securing much-needed funding. 

Sevetri Wilson Taylor says leaders in tech face similar challenges, but on a larger scale. 

Wilson Taylor is the founder of Resilia and the CEO of Propserall. She helps organizations, including nonprofits, secure funding to make their ideas a reality. 

She was the first Black woman to raise more than $1 million in funding for the tech company she runs. 

Though she doesn't "necessarily have a traditional tech background," Wilson Taylor says that through exposure to corporations and professionals, as well as exposure to "solutions that tech could actually solve for the population" that she wanted to serve, she was able to break into tech. 

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"I do think it's important for us to be disruptive," Wilson Taylor said. She says it's important for more Black entrepreneurs to not just be consumers of technology, but to use it to develop ideas. 

Wilson Taylor says it's important that when Black founders have great ideas, they have opportunities to have their ideas funded. 

Census Bureau data shows that Black-owned businesses increased by around 13% between 2017 to 2020. Between 2017 and 2021, their revenues jumped by 43%. 

According to U.S. government data, in the last year, "Americans across the country and in a wide range of industries filed a record 5 1/2 million new business applications, bringing the total number under this administration to a record-breaking 16 million."

Still, tech is a bit of a different playing field compared to running a small business, and diversity plays a key role in both sectors. For years, activists and entrepreneurs have been focused on how to improve diversity in the technology industry in the United States.

"Black founders continuously need to be funded, and they need Black fund managers to step up to the plate," Wilson Taylor said. 

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