On March 2, Rutgers University’s Center for Urban Entrepreneurship & Economic Development will hold its Black and Latino Tech Initiative Launch (BLT). The free event (registrationÂ is required) offers black and Hispanic tech entrepreneurs valuable advice on preparing their businesses for an accelerator program as well as on-site networking opportunities with venture capitalists and accelerators.
“Less than 2% of all technology startups are led by black or Latino individuals,â€ says CUEED executive director Lyneir Richardson. “The reasons for this are two-fold: black and Latino entrepreneurs have difficulty securing capital, and they also have challenges building business teams that get accepted into top tier accelerators. Our BLT Launch event will seek to remedy this situation by providing scientists, inventors, and technology innovators with essential info that will give their ideas a chance to be developed, funded, and launched into the marketplace.â€
The event is open to solo entrepreneurs and teams with an actual tech product or service. At least one team member has to be a person of color holding equity within the company. Entrepreneurs in attendance can connect with a network of experts offering advice on getting into an accelerator and securing significant capital investment.
Companies at the BLT Launch will have their business models and other aspects of their business reviewed. The event will funnel selected businesses into accelerator programs. EntrepreneursÂ accepted into an accelerator will receive matching funds up to $10,000.
Rutgers encourages black and Latino investors, scientists, inventors, and tech entrepreneurs–including developers, programmers, business development, and marketing professionals–from New Jersey, New York, and Connecticut to attend.
The Black and Latino Tech Initiative will take place at Newark Venture Partners: 1 Washington Place, 7th floor, in Newark, New Jersey.
If you can’t make the event, you can stillÂ apply for the accelerators. Applications are being accepted until March 31, 2017.