William Cunningham has created BlackCrowdfunding.net, a site where black entrepreneurs can raise money from the public to start businesses.
In an interview with the Washington Post, Cunningham explains how he sees his site as an extension of the African American tradition of “passing the hat;” and how crowdfunding allows black entrepreneurs to bypass traditional channels like bank loans and venture capital.
The site posts an incredible variety of products and start-ups. Some of the popular initiatives currently on the site include a community garden, a travel agency, and a collection of black pride t-shirts.
“Most people start a business by taking out loans on their houses or going to friends and family and raising money that way,” Cunningham said. “If you’re in a demographic where your housing wealth has been impacted significantly negatively, then that’s less of an option with respect to raising capital.”
Crowdfunding presents a more promising option, he said. It allows an entrepreneur to raise money for his or her start-up online by collecting small investments or donations from a large number of people.
“The idea is that crowdfunding is a tool that can be used to get resources to low to moderate income communities in a way that we haven’t seen before,” Cunningham said.
Thoughts on BlackCrowdfunding.net?
What are some other ways that we can support black entrepreneurs?
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