ThirdLove, the third largest e-commerce intimates apparel brand in the U.S., has launched a new program called The TL Effect, where it will provide monetary support, fundraising assistance, office space, mentorship, and exposure to women of color entrepreneurs.
“We are dedicated to creating a future where founders reflect our country’s demographics,” the company stated in a blog post, “but as a female-founded and led company, we are very aware that we have a long, long way to go.”
“As a brand that embraces diversity, equality, and inclusion, we have spent the past few weeks brainstorming ways the team could make a difference and help influence this moment of change taking place in our society,” CEO and Co-Founder Heidi Zak said in a press release.
ThirdLove will choose a business to participate every quarter. Its strategy for investing in women of color entrepreneurs includes:
- Stimulating growth with a monetary grant provided to each company.
- Increasing capabilities by dedicating a portion of ThirdLove’s office space—when its San Francisco headquarters reopens—to the entrepreneurs to use for meetings, workspace, and photo shoots.
- Raising brand awareness by amplifying the product/service on ThirdLove’s social and blog platforms and sharing any content ThirdLove creates, so the entrepreneurs can leverage on their own channels.
- Raising capital with the assistance of ThirdLove’s co-founders, who will help them navigate fundraising (if they decide to go that route) so that they will have a more equitable opportunity at scaling the next billion-dollar idea.
- Creating a mentoring program where the entire ThirdLove team can donate their time and knowledge to help in various aspects of the business (product development, production, supply chain, marketing, creative, finance, etc.).
To qualify for The TL Effect, applicants must be women of color with a U.S.-based consumer-focused early-stage startup that has an existing product or service who has not received venture capital funds.
“ThirdLove believes that if we can contribute to the success of more female founders of color, they will be able to hire others, and impact the world, and then mentor others over time,” the company said in an email to Black Enterprise.
Women of color entrepreneurs can apply here. The deadline is July 31.