Google Expands Support for Black Business Owners

On June 17th, CEO, Sundar Pichai, announced Google will invest $175 million toward economic opportunity for Black business owners, startup founders, job seekers and developers. A part of this initiative is the inaugural Google for Startups Accelerator in the U.S: a virtual three-month program for Black founders from across the country. 

The Google for Startups Accelerator for Black founders is a three-month digital accelerator program for Seed to Series A technology startups based in the U.S. The accelerator is designed to bring the best of Google’s products, people and technology to Black founders across the U.S. 

During the accelerator, startups will be paired with Google experts to identify and solve their most pressing technical challenges, everything from implementing machine learning to developing mobile apps to improving user experience design. Founders will also participate in workshops focused on fundraising, hiring and sales. Interested startups can apply through June 30th and the accelerator will kick off in August. This will be the first in a series of Google for Startups Accelerators focused on underrepresented founders.

Along with the accelerator, Google is creating a $5 million Google for Startups Black Founders Fund. This fund will provide cash awards up to $100,000 to selected startups from our U.S. programs and partner communities. These cash awards will go to startups with Black founders, who have been deeply impacted by COVID-19 and who are disproportionately locked out of access to capital.

This year, Google has focused support efforts in Atlanta. 

Local tech entrepreneur Jewel Burks Solomon had been named head of Google for Startups for the U.S. and is forging new partnerships with the Russell Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship. and Collab Studio, and creating the Google for Startups Founders Academy.

“”The big thing I want in starting a business is to make a difference in my community.” – Jewel Burks”

RCIE is dedicated to driving community impact, devoted to empowering African American entrepreneurs and small business owners. The only initiative of its kind in the region, RCIE will be part incubator, part accelerator, part innovation lab and even part museum; changing the narrative by telling the untold and under-told stories of African American entrepreneurs and business leaders of past and present, while offering access to place and space, resources, networks, mentorship, technical assistance and education.

Collab Studio provides a full suite of high-impact workshops, seminars and resources, led by industry experts, Studio helps emerging & existing Black business owners — whether small or large, in the idea or growth stage, bootstrapped or equipped with funding — to build a solid foundation.

Though we see this as a step forward, we know there is much more work to be done to level the playing field for founders. If you or someone you know would be a great fit for the Google for Startups Accelerator, encourage them to apply by June 30th 2020