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'I'm Black. I'm a Woman. Let's Talk About Raising Venture Capital.'

As a Black woman, I'm part of a demographic that's least likely to successfully raise venture capital. But there are ways to shift that narrative.

This story appears in the January 2021 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

The first few times I went to pitch a venture capitalist, it was like traveling to a different country where I didn’t speak the language or know the cultural norms. I’d never done anything like it before and didn’t know anybody who had. When I cofounded my first startup, I was a sixth-grade teacher in my 20s. I’d soon discover that people like me — Black, female — are the least likely to get funding from an investor. But eventually, I’d learn something equally as important: People like me are often pitching all wrong, or at least very differently than the founders VCs say yes to.

Courtesy of Mandela Schumacher-Hodge Dixon

There’s a lot to learn from those founders who are successfully raising capital, no matter who you are.

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