Three North Texas companies are getting a six-figure boost from a Google fund designed to aid Black-founded startups.
Google set up the $10 million initiative to address the access to capital problem that many Black founders encounter when they launch businesses. D-FW companies receiving $100,000 each from the fund are:
- Fêtefully, a Dallas virtual wedding and event-planning studio founded by GiGi McDowell.
- Safer Management Inc., a Dallas tech platform created by Fredrick Burns that helps schools and organizations streamline safety and health procedures, and digitally track attendance, viruses, and incident reporting.
- XR Sports Group, a Frisco company founded by Kedreon Cole that hosts and powers digital gaming experiences for professional sports teams, colleges and celebrity influencers.
Last year, Google for Startups gave 76 Black-led companies up to $100,000 in funding, helping them keep their doors open, pay their employees, and focus on building their businesses. Those companies went on to raise more than $50 million in additional capital.
McDowell said she plans to use the money to hire staff and accelerate product development.
Burns said he’ll use the cash to develop new educational technologies using machine learning and artificial intelligence.
Cole said the support will allow his games-based digital platform to move from private beta to public beta launch.
“Black founders currently receive less than 1 percent of total [venture capital] funding,” said Jewel Burks Solomon, head of Google for Startups U.S. “The Google for Startups Black Founders Fund embodies our mission of helping underrepresented founders grow their businesses … with no strings attached.”