The R/GA consultancy firm has announced the launch of the Coalition Venture Studio.
Led by R/GA Entrepreneur in Residence Davyeon Ross, the studio is backed in part by Verizon’s investment arm, Verizon Ventures, according to TechCrunch.
Ross is perhaps best known for being the founder of ShotTracker, a sports analytics company, and he said that the point of the Coalition Venture Studio was to give a proverbial leg up to Black-led startups.
“It’s not going to be cohorts or batches of companies,” he said to TechCrunch. “The thought process is, it’s an ongoing initiative [ … ] A big piece of this is, it’s not an application process, it’s a registration process. Once we work with R/GA to vet the companies, we can start positioning them for projects within the R/GA agency.”
Ross said he got the idea to form the Coalition Venture Studio when he saw how R/GA helped catalyze so many relationships for Black men and women.
To qualify for participation in the studio, startups must be majority Black-owned or have a Black CEO, CTO, or board chair. The studio, however, will not only help startups, but established companies as well. The studio will provide support in the form of creative capital (for example, copywriting services), financial capital (which will come from within the network), and relationship capital (in other words, access to “blue-chip” clientele).