Hollywood actor, director, and producer Michael B. Jordan is once again putting out the call for talented Black founders looking to make their mark as entrepreneurs. For the second year, the Newark-born founder of Obsidianworks, a culture-powered marketing agency is partnering with MaC Venture Capital, Concrete Rose Capital, and Harlem Capital to bring forth the Invesco QQQ Legacy Classic startup pitch competition, giving Black founders the chance to compete for access to funding, a dedicated advisory, and mentorship from Jordan and key players in the VC industry.
As it stands today, less than 2 percent of VC funding goes to Black founders. And despite an increase in the year following George Floyd’s death at the hands of the Minneapolis police department, funding to these businesses has slowed over the last year. MaC Venture Capital has a mission to provide the next generation of Black entrepreneurs with the tools they need to be successful and bring more awareness to Black-led companies. The seed-stage venture capital firm founded in 2019 sees this startup pitch competition as an opportunity to break down barriers and open doors for diverse communities to enter spaces that they are typically not included in or receive funding for.
"We’re proud to continue providing the next generation of Black entrepreneurs with an opportunity to fund their business ideas," says Mike Palank, General Partner of MaC Venture Capital. "Far too many times, million-dollar ideas never come to fruition because people simply don’t have the platform, tools, or opportunity they need to be successful. We’re confident that this competition will not only provide winners with accessibility to a new level of success but also create a support system fueled by top leaders in the VC industry that are eager to support their dreams."
The second annual competition was created for Black founders with seed-stage companies with less than $3 million in capital raised to date. Beginning today through December 9, 2022, qualifying applicants can submit their business proposals and investor decks on the Invesco QQQ Legacy Classic page via the Prudential Center website for the chance to receive the mentorship they need to scale their business and set themselves up for future growth.
Representatives from Invesco, Concrete Rose Capital, Michael B. Jordan, and Harlem Capital will serve as advisors for the competition and guide selected founders. Winners will be flown to Newark, New Jersey and awarded by Michael B. Jordan during halftime of the Invesco QQQ Legacy Classic Basketball Showcase, taking place the first Saturday in February at the Prudential Center.
The 2023 Invesco QQQ Legacy Classic is an HBCU basketball showcase that will feature Morgan State University versus Delaware State University and Norfolk State University versus Hampton University competing in a doubleheader to air on TNT.
Interested participants can submit an application at the Prudential Center's website.