the "B" stands for Black and Brown
Our mission is to provide Black/Brown woman-identifying founders with access to community, capital, and capacity building in order to meet business milestones that lead to economic advancement through entrepreneurship.

We fund and scale tech-enabled, revenue-generating businesses (under $1M) founded by people who identify as Black/Brown and woman. We ignite civic engagement and hyperlocal infrastructure at the intersection of business support services, supplier diversity, social and financial capital.


Founded in 2016 by Serial Entrepreneur and Computer Scientist Shelly Bell, Black Girl Ventures addresses the unique challenges Black and Brown women face in accessing social and financial capital to grow their businesses. The BGV Style competition is the largest pitch competition globally for Black women founders. It uniquely combines the premise of Shark Tank and Kickstarter by activating community participation in donating to support women-owned businesses directly. We have funded 76 women of color, held over 25 BGV Pitch Programs across 8 cities and served over 170 participants. 

Black Girl Ventures pledges to accelerate 100,000 Black and Brown women-identifying entrepreneurs through Community Building as a Service (CBaaS). Shifting the idea of community building from being viewed solely as a community service to a valid and viable business offering to ensure the development and growth of small businesses. 

We believe in a world where ALL ideas have a chance to succeed. 



Black Girl Ventures began by supporting Black and Brown women entrepreneurs through our crowdfunded pitch competition program. Modeled after the historic African-American “Rent Party,” the BGV Pitch offers a creative way to raise funds and build a community for founders who identify as women, Black and/or Brown.


During a BGV Pitch, each founder has 3 minutes to pitch and a 3 minute Q&A from our Champions Panel. The audience then votes with their dollars via SheRaise, our tech platform. The winners are the top 3 founders who receive the most votes. All participants become part of the BGV Cohort and have the opportunity to gain access to capital, connections, resources and exclusive updates. Through our expansion efforts, we are keeping the rent party going while working to help Black/Brown founders navigate (Green Book) the entrepreneurial ecosystem.

The Team

Shelly Bell


Tiffany Spearman

Head of Digital Project Management

Sophie Aziakou


The Board

Stephanie Thomas

Principal, Net Positive Strategies

Penny Lee

1776 + K Street Angels

Alex Neckles

Impact Assets

Cris Turner

Vice President, Dell Technologies

Selvi Clark

Principal, Booz Allen Hamilton


© 2023 by Black Girl Ventures Foundation. 

All Rights Reserved  





The Black Girl Ventures Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization.

Black Girl Ventures 
Hera Hub DC

5028 Wisconsin Ave NW

Washington, DC 20016