Like the inseams of a dress that no one ever really sees, the fashion industry has a history of hidden issues, including a lack of inclusive sizing, ableism, or absence of diversity on the runways and in boardrooms. In the wake of mass protests to honor Black Lives Matter, and with COVID-19 impacting Black entrepreneurs at a disproportionate rate, the fashion industry has had to flip their dress inside out and face these issues head-on.
Leaders and entrepreneurs like Aurora James, founder of Brother Vellies, have called for companies to pledge to source at least 15% of products from Black-owned brands. But before we can even support our favorite Black-owned fashion and beauty brands, we must address inequities Black entrepreneurs face when starting and scaling any business.
Globally, 80% of all venture capital firms don’t have a single Black investor, and just 1% of venture-funded startup