Ulta Beauty CEO Dave Kimbell announced plans to spend $50 million on diversity and inclusion efforts this year, including investments to boost support for Black brands.
According to a press release, the beauty and skincare brand will spend $50 million this year creating an accelerator program to mentor entrepreneurs of color. Some $5 million will be invested in a venture capital fund for early-stage companies to lean into marketing efforts. Another $3.5 million of the investment will go toward in-store merchandising and displays.
“As a values-driven company, we believe we have a responsibility to drive diversity, equity, and inclusion in our company, industry, and world,” Kimbell said in the release.
“Looking back at 2021, I’m proud of the work we did to meaningfully grow our assortment, elevate and celebrate underrepresented voices, invest in our associates and create equitable experiences. Our forward-looking 2022 DE&I commitments ensure that we remain energized, creative, and extremely dedicated to leading in this critical space.”
Another $25 million will be used for company advertisements, social media campaigns, and other initiatives to reach beauty consumers of BIPOC backgrounds. Ulta will also spend an additional $8.5 million on ads for Black-owned, led, or founded brands.
Alta has launched several initiatives to grow the number of Black brands it sells and increase the diversity of its employees. Last year, the beauty giant increased the number of Black-owned brands it carries from 13 to 28 and said it’s halfway toward its goal of 15% representation on its shelves.
Last year, Ulta pledged to feature more Black women in its ads. The brand also signed the Fifteen Percent Pledge, an initiative to make Black-owned products on store shelves proportional to the country’s Black population.
The Black hair and beauty market generates millions annually, and it’s growing.
African Americans reportedly captured 86% of the ethnic beauty market, accounting for $54 million of the $63 million spent. Additionally, Black Americans spent $127 million on grooming aids and $465 million on skincare.