Serena Williams is taking an active role in helping businesses founded by women of color receive the investments they need to excel. The tennis champion took to Instagram Friday announcing her plans to partner with Bumble and their plans to help minority women through the Bumble Fund.
“Things I won’t stop talking about: investing in women. Now through March 27th, @Bumble Fund applicants will get an opportunity to pitch their idea to me and @Whitney,” she wrote. “We’re working together to build a bigger, more equitable table. If you’re a woman entrepreneur of color, apply through the app.”
Bumble, a dating app that requires women to send the first message, launched a venture capital fund to support business founded by women of color in 2018.
Williams serves as a global adviser for the app, which also features social and business networking components that encourage women to “make the first move.” She announced her partnership with the company during a Super Bowl ad.
According to Bumble, women received only 2 percent of all venture capital funding in 2017. Black women, who have been called the most educated and most entrepreneurial demographic in the U.S., only received 0.2 percent of all venture funding, the site reports.
The Bumble Fund will “focus only early-stage investments, primarily in businesses founded and led by women of color and those from underrepresented groups,” and provide successful applicants an average investment of $25,000 and a range of from $5,000 to $250,000.
Founder and CEO Whitney Wolfe Herd discussed the tennis champion’s addition to the Fund. “In teaming up with Williams for the Bumble Fund, we want women everywhere to know that we are here, we are listening and we believe in you,” she said to Forbes.
“We are giving women more keys to success, while encouraging them to push their ideas forward and keep thinking big when it comes to their business ventures.”