Amazon Web Services launches $30 million accelerator for underrepresented business owners, including black founders
Amazon Web Services (AWS) Inc. has pledged over $30 million to roll out an acceleration program focused on supporting these business owners to help underrepresented founders.
A cloud computing unit of online retail giant Amazon, AWS has announced a three-year commitment to early-stage startups led by Black, Latino, LGBTQIA+ and female founders tied to its new accelerator. AWS impact.
According to a press release, “Each startup earns $125,000 in cash, up to $100,000 in AWS Activate Credits, business and technical guidance, a community of peers, and ongoing support” to drive their growth.
AWS revealed that the accelerator gives high-potential, pre-seed startups the tools to reach milestones. He added that this includes helping them raise funds or get accepted into a seed-stage acceleration program and building powerful solutions in the cloud.
The new effort is needed as observers have pointed to funding disparities caused by the racial wealth gap, often leaving many black entrepreneurs unable to secure necessary funding like venture capital funding.
For example, the founders of Black and Latinx have raised $2.3 billion in such funding as of August 31, 2020. This figure means that these founders have only raised 2.6% of the $87.3 billion of all funding that founders have secured so far in 2020, according to an analytics firm. Crunchbase. Other TechCrunch data shows that “only 2% of all partner-level VCs are black, and 81% of VC companies don’t have a single black partner.”
Once accepted into the eight-week program, participants will “create a personalized training program from sessions delivered by AWS startup experts and guest speakers.”
AWS adds, “A single day could include lessons from an AWS Solutions Architect on optimizing cloud infrastructure, guidance on pitching investors from an experienced startup CEO, and do’s and don’ts. not do when it comes to leadership from a third-party organization that provides support to startups.
CEO of Amazon Web Services Adam Selipski reflected on the effort in his April 20 statements.
“When we launched in 2006, AWS changed the game for startups by giving them access to the same technology as the world’s largest companies. Today, we continue to level the playing field so founders can pursue their ideas and build successful businesses, regardless of gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity or race. »
Applications are now open for the first AWS Impact Accelerator for Black Founders. These founders can apply here. The program will begin in June for US-based startups. For more information on the acceleration program and its offer, go here.