Apple invests millions to back entrepreneurs of color as part of racial justice push

Apple invests millions to back entrepreneurs of color as part of racial justice push

Apple
Inc
on
Wednesday
said
it
was
putting
$60
million
into
a
fresh
round
of
projects
aimed
at
challenging
systemic
racism,
including
its
first
foray
into
venture
capital
funding
to
back
entrepreneurs
of
color.

Apple
said
it
would
invest
$10
million
in
a
fund
with
Harlem
Capital,
a
New
York-based
early-stage
venture
firm,
with
the
goal
of
helping
fund
1,000
companies
over
20
years.
Apple
will
invest
$25
million
in
Siebert
Williams
Shank’s
Clear
Vision
Impact
Fund,
which
provides
financing
to
small-
and
mid-sized
businesses,
with
an
emphasis
on
minority-owned
firms.

Apple
will
become
a
limited
partner
in
funds
at
both.

“There’s
a
lack
of
diversity
among
venture
capital
and
banking
funders,”
Lisa
Jackson,
Apple’s
vice
president
of
environment,
policy
and
social
initiatives,
told
Reuters.
“We
looked
for
where
we
thought
there
was
opportunity
for
our
resources
to
do
good
things.”

The
efforts
are
part
of

Apple’s
$100
million
racial
equality
and
justice
initiative

announced
last
year
after
the
killings
of
Breonna
Taylor
and
George
Floyd,
two
Black
people
killed
by
police.

Apple
is
contributing
$25
million
to
the
Propel
Center,
a
50,000-square-foot
facility
in
Atlanta
where
historically
Black
colleges
and
universities
will
collaborate
on
programs
in
entrepreneurship,
app
development
and
other
topics.
The
iPhone
maker
is
establishing
two
grant
programs
to
help
design
curriculum
in
silicon
and
hardware
engineering
for
historically
Black
schools.

Apple
will
also
establish
an
app
development
academy
in
Detroit,
its
first
in
the
United
States.
The
academy
provides
a
free
10-to-12-month
course
and
will
aim
to
teach
1,000
students
a
year
skills
in
coding,
design
and
marketing.
The
facility
in
Detroit
will
work
with
Michigan
State
University.

“We
wanted
to
see
more
Black
and
brown
developers,”
Jackson
said,
noting
that
Apple
has
long
worked
with
historically
Black
schools.
“They
tend
to
be
focusing
on
the
southeastern
part
of
the
United
States.
But
Detroit
has
over
50,000
small
businesses
that
are
owned
by
Black
and
brown
people.
And
so
it
seemed
to
us
that
there
was
an
entrepreneurial
opportunity.”


Source : Reuters Link

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