Pharrell’s Black Ambition props up a new generation of entrepreneurs

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The Future. Non-profit Black Ambition is three years into investing in businesses founded by Black and Hispanic entrepreneurs. Founders Felecia Hatcher and the ever-busy Pharrell Williams believe the companies they’ve seeded and mentored could pull in $1 billion in VC money by 2030… potentially making Black Ambition the next Y Combinator.

Billionaire Boys Club
Since 2020, Black Ambition is making business dreams come true.

  • So far, the organization has invested more than $10 million in over 100 early-stage companies in “high-growth” industries like tech, healthcare, design, and consumer goods.
  • Those companies have gone on to raise more than $100 million in venture capital and make a combined $27 million in revenue.
  • During its Demo Day last week, the organization awarded another 30 companies with a total of more than $3 million, kicking off another cohort of entrepreneurs.

CEO Felecia Hatcher described the organization’s mission statement as “a return on investment for our ancestors’ sacrifice.” Hatcher and Pharrell have stated they want to be at the forefront of building up their community, because they can’t rely on others to.

Case in point: after the death of George Floyd in 2020, the top 50 largest public companies came together and pledged to give nearly $50 billion to minority initiatives to tackle racial inequity. $5.1 billion was given in 2021… which immediately dropped to $2.3 billion in 2022.

That’s a precipitous dip… one Pharrell said made the pledges feel like “marketing.”


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