This Woman is Investing $25 Million into Black and Latino-Owned Businesses

Small businesses need three things to survive and grow: capital, networks, and expertise. That is exactly what Monique Woodard is providing as a venture partner through 500 Startups -- a $25 million dollar microfund established to make early stage investments in businesses owned by Blacks and Latinos.
Monique, who is also the co-founder of Black Founders, a national organization started in 2011 to help black entrepreneurs find funding, will lead the new microfund. The goal of the fund is to raise $25 million to invest in black- and Latino-owned businesses. As Woodard points out, "Black and Latino consumers (is) a market that investors should be paying attention to.”

Black buying power to surpass $1 trillion dollars

Businesses owned by blacks in particular is a growing market. According to The Atlantic, Black buying power is expected to reach $1.2 trillion this year, and $1.4 trillion by 2020, according to the University of Georgia’s Selig Center for Economic Growth.

Monique's background certainly qualifies her for the job of leading the new $25 million microfund. In addition to being the co-founder of Black Founders, she was one of the first Innovation Fellows for San Francisco and not only knows technology but has helped cities use technology in workforce and civic services. She also understands small businesses, having more than 15 years of entrepreneur experience herself.

For more details about the Black Founders organization, visit

For more details about Monique Woodard, visit
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