Updated: Nov 14
Black Girl Ventures creates access to capital for Black and Brown women-identifying founders. The BGV Pitch Program flips the traditional pitch experience on its head: we coach entrepreneurs, host a live crowdfunded event, then connect them to community and professionals to support them on their journey. The live-crowdfunding event is a high-energy, fun, focused, and supportive environment that includes the community in being a part of the entrepreneurial journey. The virtual format of the event allows for increased viewership, and Black Girl Ventures supporters across the United States will be able to tune in, submit their votes, and make donations through SheRaise. Congratulations to the winners!
Ehime Eigbe - 1st Place Winner
Ehime is a dairy explorer and entrepreneur. She started making her own frozen yogurt when she realized most available brands weren’t as healthy as they claimed and created her clean-label recipe which brought about the birth of Sweetkiwi in 2011. She has created flavors for and led partnerships with many exciting brands such as Moet & Chandon, Pepsi, Guinness, Baileys to name a few. She has catered major concerts for Pepsi, serving over 3000 people. In 2007, Ehime moved to the DC area and was accepted into the Union Kitchen food accelerator to launch her delicious Whipped Greek Yogurt in grocery stores. As Founder and Creative Director of Sweetkiwi, Ehime is passionate about creating inspired flavors reminiscent of foods that inspire her from all over the world and delivering an unforgettable experience in a pint.
Sweetkiwi makes the best tasting, low calorie whipped greek yogurt using real milk sourced locally from grass-fed cows and real ingredients. Their ingredient-based method of crafting their products allows them to create an irresistible product in amazing flavors, they go to great lengths to ensure local sourcing and traceability. All of their whipped greek yogurts are under 320 calories per pint yet it tastes amazing and packed with 20g of protein & millions of probiotics. They are currently sold in grocery stores such as Whole Foods Market, Dawsons Market, Yes Organic, Street Market, Union Kitchen Grocery, Glen's Garden Market. They take the stress out of dessert eating! If you missed her pitch you can go to the SheRaise platform to view it.
Kendra Woolridge - 2nd Place Winner
Kendra is a lover of nail polish, through and through. She created Janet & Jo. which is the namesake of her two grandmothers, out of her passion for polish and commitment to clean beauty. She lost her mother and grandma Jo. to cancer, so after learning of the toxic ingredients contained in nail polishes, she knew this was something she had to change. Most nail polishes contain toxic ingredients linked to cancer, reproductive and respiratory health issues, and birth defects. Janet & Jo. nail lacquers use the stories behind the polish names to educate and inspire consumers while providing a clean health-conscious alternative to traditional polishes.
Janet & Jo. nail lacquers are 10-Free, Vegan, and Cruelty-Free! This means they're free of 10 harmful ingredients found in traditional nail polishes, so you can enjoy beauty without consequence! Most nail polishes on the market contain toxic ingredients linked to cancer, reproductive health issues, and birth defects. Janet & Jo. nail lacquers are conscious, clean, and created to educate and inspire you through the stories behind our polish names.
Sasha Loriene McClain - 3rd Place Winner
Sasha-Loriene, a contemporary artist & founder of BLACK GIRLS WHO PAINT (BGWP). Did you know the further she progressed in her art journey, the less she saw herself reflected in the arts community? After taking a step back, she realized that she never saw herself in the art world, even as a child. In fact, the reason she waited until adulthood to actively share her artwork or pursue anything art related was that she didn’t see myself. Sasha-Loriene thought she couldn’t be an artist with a sustainable career so she never tried. Years later, she found myself stuck in an unfulfilling career & decided to be the change she wanted to see — creating an ecosystem of Black women artists. So on September 4, 2017, BGWP was born as a safe space for Black women artists to share their art & their story. Little did she know, she cultivated the community she needed as an actual Black girl who paints, and now the next can see herself, believe in herself, and inspire others to do the same!
BLACK GIRLS WHO PAINT (BGWP) is a safe space dedicated to Black women & girl painters – our art & our stories. Created by a Black woman who manifested the community she wanted as a young girl, BGWP is a membership that includes a directory of offered services, events, & available art for purchase from Black women painters across the globe & supports Black girls, teens, & students in their art pursuit through the BGWP Awards Fund. Through increased visibility, positive representation, & support, BGWP aims to empower Black women painters to see & invest in themselves!
BGV is forever grateful for our sponsors, our judges, supporters, and various members of our community for supporting these women in their pitch competition. Micro-funding is a powerful tool that helps founders maintain the momentum in their businesses.
Subscribe to the Digital Orange Juice for juicy ideas and the people who fund them. You can find out about our next pitch competitions here. Don't forget to check out the SheRaise platform for more pitch events.