Fearless Fund Deploys $5 Million To Grow Women Of Color Owned Businesses

By Annie Baker ● August 22, 2019
  • Fearless Fund, a venture firm that invests in women of color led businesses, announced it is deploying $5 million to help entrepreneurs

Fearless Fund, a venture firm that invests in women of color led businesses seeking pre-seed, seed level, or Series A financing, announced it is deploying $5 million to help entrepreneurs grow their businesses. Fearless Fund is built by women of color for women of color.

And since its recent initiation, the Fearless Fund has hosted pitch competitions at Facebook Headquarters and Spanx Headquarters with brand partners like Coca-Cola, UrbanSkinRX, Bumble, etc.

And through Fearless Fund, founding partners Arian Simone and Keshia Knight Pulliam have been highlighting how diversity significantly impacts a company’s performance and potential to provide investor returns. Fearless Funds’ advisors include The Opportunity Hub CEO Rodney Sampson and The 22 Fund founder and managing partner Tracy Gray.

“The Fearless fund is designed to change the narrative as it relates to funding allocated to women of color,” said Arian Simone.

Last year, U.S. companies have raised a total of $130 billion in venture capital funding. And a mere 2.2% of that total went towards female-founded companies and less than 1% of total funding was allocated toward businesses founded by women of color. And this is not a “pipeline issue” or a result of a lack of VC-eligible women of color-led companies.

Fearless Fund already has five companies in its portfolio including Ellis Island Tea Nailah Ellis-Brown — which is the first African-American female to ever own a beverage production facility.

Simone is a serial entrepreneur, philanthropist, angel investor, best-selling author, and marketing expert. And Pulliam was an actress on The Cosby Show playing Rudy Huxtable. Simone is also the founder and CEO of Arian Simone Enterprises and Pulliam runs a spice line called Keshia’s Kitchen, a podcast called Kandidly Keshia, and a non-profit called The Kamp Kizzy Foundation.

Early investors in the fund include actress and producer Marsai Martin (plays Diane Johnson on Black-ish), Atlanta-based OBGYN Jacqueline Waters (Married to Medicine), Chattanooga VC fund, The JumpFund, and several other notable individuals and institutional investors.

The Fearless Fund has a proven track record of molding successful startups and building an expansive network of top entertainers and business leaders. Along with a robust mentor program, the Fearless Fund team is leveraging its network to build out an optional Celebrity Equity-Based Endorsement program for its portfolio companies. This program is aiming to quickly scale companies by connecting them with celebrities for influencer marketing campaigns.