Pharrell williams appointed black tech entrepreneurs Justin Turkish and Andre Davis the recipients of the grand prize for its Black Ambition initiative.
The two will receive $ 1 million for their business, Livegistics, the company said in a press release on Tuesday.
Turk, 40, said Black Ambition was important to him not only because of the price, but also because it gave future black entrepreneurs a path to success.
“Winning this competition is more important than the cash prize,” Turk said in the statement. “When we first entered the tech startup world as two black entrepreneurs, we didn’t know how to navigate that space.”
Williams, a 13-time Grammy-winning songwriter / producer, launched Black Ambition last December in partnership with Adidas, Chanel, the Rockefeller Foundation, among others. Black Ambition was established as a non-profit initiative for black and Latin entrepreneurs from start-ups in technology, design, health, and consumer products / services.
“Recent events and tragedies have illustrated the glaring divisions still existing in the American experience, and although entrepreneurship has long been a tenet of the American Dream, marginalized people have faced long-standing obstacles to success.” Williams said in the statement. “With Black Ambition, the aim is to help strengthen the pool of talented entrepreneurs and close the opportunities and wealth gaps resulting from limited access to capital and resources.”
Turk and Davis are now the first grand prize winners for the initiative, receiving $ 1 million for their tech start-up, Livegistics. Based in Detroit, Livegistics is a cloud-based hardware management software company designed to help construction companies. Livegistics provides data and metrics via a digital paperless system to reduce paper pollution in urban areas.
“We provide contractors with cutting edge technology that allows them to operate more efficiently, while also providing owners / municipalities / construction managers with real-time data and analytics to ensure their investment is being managed properly,” the webpage states. official from Livegistics.
While Tuck and Davis received the $ 1 million grand prize, other entrepreneurs received awards as well. Business reviews reports that the top prize in the HBCU category went to Dosso Beauty, a New York-based company specializing in organic cosmetics and personal care products.
Three other companies each received a prize of $ 250,000: the herbal cosmetics company Alodia, a reading comprehension site for Spanish-speaking students called Beereaders and QuirkChat, a video social media app for anime lovers. . All finalists received a minimum of $ 15,000 and will continue to receive mentorship until August.
More than 1,700 companies have applied for the Black Ambition competition.
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