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SXSW 2021

A Better Future for Black-owned Businesses

Among entrepreneurs, Black Americans have been historically underrepresented. One of the barriers to Black entrepreneurship is a lack of access to financial capital. This session will explore this and other challenges that have historically held Black- and minority-owned businesses back. There will be discussion surrounding the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on Black-owned business, and how solutions like corporate diversity programs and VCs focused on supporting Black founders can help address longstanding inequities. Additionally, speakers will discuss best practices and lessons learned from successful supplier diversity programs or VCs focused on diversity.

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  1. Understanding of the longstanding, systemic barriers to funding and partnerships for Black- and minority-owned businesses
  2. Knowledge of the unique ways and reasons why COVID-19 has been more damaging to Black-owned businesses
  3. Learn emerging best practices in supplier diversity to maximize their positive impact on underserved business owners and communities



Chris Mittendorf, Corporate Communications Consultant, Bristol-Myers Squibb

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