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Black-Founded Startup Zirtue Has Now Raised $4M In Seed Capital Thanks To An Investment From Northwestern Mutual

Northwestern Mutual’s latest investment is one that we could all possibly benefit from. Zirtue — the world’s first and only relationship-based lending app — has received a huge investment from Northwestern Mutual Future Ventures. Northwestern Mutual’s corporate venture capital fund investment combined with Zirtue’s seed round brings the fintech startup company’s total amount raised to $4 million. Other investment funds include Google for Startups Black Founders Fund, the Jaylon Smith Minority Entrepreneurship Institute Capital Fund, Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund, plus more. The funds will be used to not only grow the team but also add product offerings. Photo Credit: Courtesy of Zirtue In an effort to further its commitment to accelerating financial technology startups, Northwestern Mutual is committed to working with startups like Zirtue, which are focused on historically underbanked and underfunded populations. They are also committed to investing in Black founded...

Apr 27, 2021

Goalsetter Founder Tanya Van Court Is Revolutionizing Financial Literacy For Black Kids And Families In America

Financial education in the Black community is often a concept that’s not grasped until adulthood. Even then, many young adults struggle to manage their personal finances because they’ve never received a solid foundation in saving and investing. When former Nickelodeon executive and Goalsetter founder Tanya Van Court set out to create her financial literacy platform, she understood that she had a higher calling to close the wealth gap between Black and brown families in America and educate Black youth all across the country. The idea for her revolutionary platform came from her then eight-year-old daughter who asked for enough money to start an investment account for her ninth birthday. Van Court knew that if she could combine her knack for understanding the language of kids as well as her personal connection to financial education, she could create something powerful to better equip Black America’s youth to take charge of their finances. “I didn’t want to be an entrepreneur. It’s...

Apr 26, 2021

Nigerian Fintech Startup Afriex Raises $1.2M Seed to Scale Its Payments Platform Across Africa

Several reports have shared just how difficult it is to send money overseas, but when the destination is Africa it can be an even bigger burden to deal with limited options, transfer fees and extended processing periods. To help resolve this issue, Lagos and San Francisco-based fintech startup Afriex — a Summer 2020 Y Combinator-backed company — launched a digital payments platform to provide instant, zero-fee money transfers to Africans at home and in the diaspora. Today, it announced a raise of a $1.2 million seed round to continue scaling its platform across the African continent, according to TechCrunch. The round was led by Pan-African VC firm Launch Africa, with participation from other investors such as Y Combinator, SoftBank Opportunity Fund, Future Africa, Brightstone VC, Processus Capital, Uncommon Ventures, A$AP Capital, Precursor Ventures, and Ivernet Holdings. Angel investors for the round included Russell Smith, Mandela Schumacher-Hodge Dixon, Furqan Rydhan, and Andrea...

Mar 23, 2021

Gig Wage Founder Craig J. Lewis Aims to Simplify the Payroll Process For the Gig Worker

This founder is building a legacy one payroll system at a time. Craig J. Lewis is the founder and CEO of the FinTech platform changing the way businesses pay people. On a mission to simplify the payroll system while building a legacy to ensure that people remember his last name, Lewis knows what it means to be resilient when the odds are stacked against him. Gig Wage was built to help ease pain points for the payroll system that neglects the 1099 employee, or what Lewis calls the “gig” worker, made up of freelancers, contractors, etc. To date, Lewis has managed to raise $13.2 million and is on a path to quadrupling the size of his company by the end of 2021. He sat down with AfroTech to discuss what representation means to him in the venture capital space, where he feels the industry gets it wrong and how they can correct that, and the solution that Gig Wage provides that isn’t found on the market.   View this post on Instagram   A post shared by Gig Wage (@gigwage) AfroTech: What...

Mar 12, 2021