The fastest-growing market of entrepreneurs is women. Fueling this growth are black women-owned businesses. In fact, the number of businesses owned by black women has grown 164% since 2007. Despite this extraordinary statistic, access to funding is still a challenge for most black women founders.
To combat this issue, Ariel Shaw, MBA (pictured), created an organization that provides a foundation of support and funding for women-owned businesses. “We must do all we can to support women-owned businesses and women in business,” Shaw says. “The ability to help shape our ecosystem through support is an amazing opportunity.”
Shaw founded the Henry County Women in Business, a subsidiary of Southern Crescent Women in Business, where women do business with each other. The organization also provides resources to help women increase their business visibility and financial sustainability. “The mission of Henry County Women in Business is to unequivocally foster business relationships to help sustain and grow our businesses and local economy,” Shaw says.
Black Women-Owned Businesses to Pitch for Funding
Shaw is paving the way for local women-owned businesses to access funding by hosting The Southern Crescent’s First Funding Pitch on August 28, in Stockbridge, Georgia. A la Shark Tank, local women-owned businesses will discuss their business or idea and pitch why they should win the funding opportunity. In addition to funding, the winner will receive a financial consultant and business coach to assist in strategic accountability and growth. Investors from major corporations looking for possible future partnerships will be present as well.
The power-packed panel of business leaders includes celebrity chef Carlos Brown, Henry County Chamber Chair Sharon Ponder, JW Event Suite co-owner Angela White, and financial expert and author Tarra “Madam Money” Jackson. U.S. Small Business Administration District Director Terri L. Denison will also be one of the special guests.
Furthermore, contestants and attendees can connect with event sponsors, which include The Coca Cola Company, Henry County Development Authority, Heritage Bank, Georgia Power, Minute Man Press, JW Event Suite, AS Consulting LLC, and Macaroni Kid.
For more on the funding pitch, click here.