My Queue

There are no Videos in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any video to save to your queue.

There are no Articles in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any article to save to your queue.

There are no Podcasts in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any podcast episode to save to your queue.

You're not following any authors.

Click the Follow button on any author page to keep up with the latest content from your favorite authors.

Pitching

How to Redefine the Pitch Competition for Black and Brown Female Founders

Shelly Bell is disrupting pitch competitions by bringing capital directly to underrepresented entrepreneurs.
Guest Writer
2 min read
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

As a door-to-door saleswoman in college, Shelly Bell learned how to convince potential customers to buy something they already had in their homes: vacuum cleaners. Today, Bell says that experience laid the foundation for her success as a serial entrepreneur and founder of Black Girl Ventures. 

Several years ago, Bell realized that entrepreneurship was a key to unlocking generational wealth building for African Americans and that by helping minority-owned businesses grow, new employment opportunities would also open for others in the community. However, she knew that the traditional fundraising models weren’t created with black and brown women in mind and often directly excludes them.

“If we peel back the layers, what we’ll see is that the financial capital is really coming from people knowing each other,” says Bell. 

With Black Girl Ventures, Bell has found the nexus of financial capital and social capital: pitch competitions that are entirely community-driven. “Connections are what really bring the money. At Black Girl Ventures pitch competitions around the U.S., the audience connects directly with the entrepreneurs: they contribute the cash for the top prize, select the winner, and, often, serve as mentors for the competitors. 

Alice’s best resources for building your network here. Alice’s best resources to help you prep for a pitch competition here.

Related: How One Founder Breaks Free From Statistics and Labels

More From Women Entrepreneur

Side Hustle

Women Should Consider the Short-Term Rental and Travel Tech Ecosystems to Fund Their Businesses

Both segments have become catalysts to female financial independence worldwide and are a springboard to a career in tech.
Success Strategies

Laughter Is a Key Component to This Specialty Magazine's Success

The founder of 'Darling' magazine discusses her business's fun and communal work culture.
Ready For Anything

To Break up the Boys' Club, Ladies, Why Not Start Your Own Venture Capital Firm?

Women in VC roles can't rely on public relations fixes, token nods or the chivalry of their male colleagues. They have to do it themselves.
Starting a Business

Michelle Pfeiffer's Fragrance Brand Took 20 Years (And Plenty of Rejection) to Build

She wanted the fragrance industry to be more transparent.The fragrance industry said no. So the actress took matters into her own hands.

More from Entrepreneur

Corene Summers helps clients advancing their health, careers and lives overall through reducing stress, tension and optimizing sleep.
In as little as seven months, the Entrepreneur Authors program will turn your ideas and expertise into a professionally presented book.
Create your business plan in half the time with twice the impact using Entrepreneur's BIZ PLANNING PLUS powered by LivePlan. Try risk free for 60 days.

Latest on Entrepreneur