Nike Invests $500K Into Economic Empowerment Partnership With Black Girl Ventures
Photo Credit: TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP via Getty Images

Nike Invests $500K Into Economic Empowerment Partnership With Black Girl Ventures

This is how you do it!

Nike has always been consistent in putting action behind their words when it comes to supporting Black lives.

Remaining consistent, the athletic wear giant has announced a $500,000 investment with Black Girl Ventures.

“The $500,000 investment from NIKE, Inc. will support Black Girl Ventures in its efforts to provide Black and Brown women-identifying founders with access to community, capital, and capacity-building to support entrepreneurship,” said the company in a press release. “This contribution builds on the commitments to Black Girls CODE, NAACP Empowerment Programs, and the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) announced in July 2020.”

Black Girl Ventures — a Washington D.C.-based nonprofit — is committed to addressing the unique challenges Black and Brown women face in accessing social and financial capital to grow their businesses.

“Nike’s funding will help us grow our reach through new chapter development, increase our technology infrastructure to better serve Black and Brown leaders through our proprietary crowdfunding platform, and increase our brand visibility through storytelling campaigns curated by Black and Brown women,” Black Girl Ventures CEO and founder, Shelly Bell, said in a statement.

Maintaining the integrity of the family, legacy (and Nike holding) brand, Converse also pledged $100,000 to both LDF and the Equal Justice Initiative last year.

Putting their money where their mouth is, Nike has reiterated its goal to  “expand its focus to local investments in 2021 that drive action and impact in partnership with the Black community.” The initiative will be carried out through the dispersal of $1.75 million into Black Community Commitment grants.

According to Nike, the grants will go to organizations prioritizing Black communities across cities in the U.S. including Boston, Memphis, St. Louis, Portland, Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York City.

While there is still a long way to go when it comes to full equity and inclusivity for Black entrepreneurs, it’s certainly a joy to see brands like Nike not only taking the pledge to make a change but taking the necessary actions to deepen that commitment.