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Fiverr Announces Inaugural Future Collective, a Business Accelerator Fellowship for Black Entrepreneurs

Future Collective fellows to receive funding as well as access to a free 6-month training and mentorship program for startups

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Fiverr, the company that is changing how the world works together, is announcing its inaugural Future Collective Fellowship Program as well as the five fellows who have been selected to receive funding, training and mentorship. Fiverr’s Future Collective was created alongside 1863 Ventures, an independent, Black-led nonprofit organization that delivers business development programs designed to bridge the gap between entrepreneurship and equality, and maestra, a business strategy firm building a more socially conscious and equitable world. The program aims to support Black entrepreneurs that have used Fiverr’s platform to get started and are already a part of Fiverr’s growing community of small businesses.

Research shows that Black entrepreneurs face financial hurdles not only when beginning their businesses, but as they attempt to navigate spaces that often don’t look like them and to which they have had little access historically. The Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland found that Black entrepreneurs were 10% more likely to apply for financial startup assistance than their white counterparts, yet they were 19% less likely to be approved. White entrepreneurs have an edge over their Black counterparts because, for every $100 in white family wealth, Black families hold just $5.04. That same sentiment is what drives many Black sellers on Fiverr. 54% come to the platform hoping to make a sustainable, permanent living primarily on Fiverr – more likely than their White and Latinx seller counterparts. Fiverr hopes to be a part of helping to close that gap and countless others.

“Fiverr’s purpose is to provide anyone, no matter their race, religion, background or beliefs, the opportunity to build their business, brand or dreams. Therefore, it is incumbent upon us to use our platform and resources in pursuit of this purpose,” said Micha Kaufman, CEO of Fiverr. “Yes, the world has seen an outpouring of support for Black owned businesses in the past year, however, there is still so much work to be done. We are thrilled to be able to support these incredible five businesses with the funding, mentoring, and training that they deserve and can’t wait to watch them continue to grow and succeed through this program.”

The five businesses that have been selected as Fiverr’s inaugural class of Future Collective fellows are:

  • Appdrop – software for empowering non-technical teams to build mobile apps without writing a single line of code.
  • Budget Collector – provides an artificial intelligence (AI) art adviser as a mobile app. The company supports the development of private art collections as well as galleries and provides resources for potential and current art collectors.
  • De L’or Cakery – a 5-star artisan cake catering company using top notch ingredients, many imported directly from the Caribbean to provide outstanding flavors.
  • Hey Girl Hey – a social bonding game created by sisters, Seanice and Sharina Clarke, Hey Girl Hey is a card game built to foster community connections among black women, featuring unexpected and entertaining prompts and challenges.
  • Keeyahri – a luxury women’s shoe brand inspired by founder and artistic director Keya Martin’s favorite architecture around the world. Keeyahri aims to help women feel confident through unique designs.

Each of the Future Collective fellows will receive $24K in funding from Fiverr, guaranteed placement in an accelerator program organized and orchestrated by 1863 Ventures and regular mentorship and guidance from Fiverr’s senior management team. The structure of the program will consist of monthly cohort sessions, assigned online materials to review and complete coupled with regular coaching sessions. The fellows will also have access to 1863 Ventures’ weekly entrepreneur webinar sessions, allowing them to participate in sessions they find relevant to their business and growth.

“Now, more than ever, it is time to double down on our support of Black entrepreneurs. Over the past few years, roughly 20% of Black Americans have engaged in early-stage entrepreneurship, but their businesses struggle to advance along the entrepreneurial pathway,” said Melissa Bradley, Managing Director of 1863 Ventures. “If Black businesses reached economic parity with non-black businesses, their revenues would increase by approximately $5.9 trillion and create more than 19 million more jobs. 1863 Ventures is proud to be leading the charge in providing the necessary resources, capital, and programmatic support to break down barriers for Black businesses. We are excited to be working with Fiverr and maestra to make this new fellowship one of a kind and accomplish economic parity for these businesses.”

“While white adults have 13 times the wealth that Black adults do, when we compare median wealth of Black and white business owners, the median wealth gap decreases to a multiplier of three,” said De’Ara Balenger, Co-Founder of maestra. “Through this effort and more like it, we believe that we can work towards building Black generational wealth and supporting Black entrepreneurship.”

About Fiverr

Fiverr’s mission is to change how the world works together. Since 2010, the Fiverr platform has been at the forefront of the future of work connecting businesses of all sizes with skilled freelancers offering digital services in more than 500 categories, across 9 verticals including graphic design, digital marketing, programming, video and animation. In the twelve months ended June 30, 2021, 4.0 million customers bought a wide range of services from freelancers across more than 160 countries. We invite you to become part of the future of work by visiting us at fiverr.com, read our blog and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


Abby Forman

[email protected]

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Ataeum Levels the Playing Field for Aspiring Entrepreneurs With New All-in-One Platform to Transform Ideas and Dreams Into Successful Businesses

MENLO PARK, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#ataeumAtaeum has unveiled an innovative new platform that empowers entrepreneurs to transform their ideas into successful businesses. The all-in-one approach is unique in that it removes obstacles that commonly discourage would-be entrepreneurs from pursuing their startup dreams. The Ataeum platform – which until now has been in private beta – is now accepting new members at ataeum.com.

Entrepreneurs with even the most brilliant ideas often falter because they’re hesitant to leave the security of their job, or they don’t know where to find the right collaborators to get their startup off the ground. Ataeum addresses both pain-points by automating the most time-consuming legal and administrative tasks associated with creating a joint venture, and by connecting entrepreneurs with other co-founders and individual contributors to build the right team to get the startup off the ground.

Ataeum is unique in its approach to smart vesting. No other startup platform offers such a robust set of legal tools to ensure fair and equitable distribution of the venture’s future commercialization value. As each participant joins a venture, the founders determine their target ownership and vesting schedule based on mutually agreed-upon responsibilities and budget contributions. The Ataeum platform then keeps track of vesting, ensuring participants are appropriately credited for the work they perform and the financial contributions they make to the venture.

How Ataeum Works

Joining the Ataeum community is free. Members can build their profile, network with other entrepreneurs and browse a growing list of projects – or create a project of their own. Ataeum Projects enable members to document their ideas and use Ataeum’s “MVP Flow” to define and refine their minimum viable product (MVP) vision. Starting a project gives members the ability to sign unlimited NDAs with other members, making it easy to explore collaborative options with full protection of their intellectual property (IP).

Once an Ataeum Project has a clearly defined MVP and a team of collaborators in place, it’s time to upgrade to an Ataeum Venture. This step forms contractual relationships between the co-founders, allowing them to take concrete steps toward assembling a team to build the MVP. An Ataeum Venture enables co-founders to expand the team while defining roles and fairly managing the participants’ potential ownership interests and reinforcing them legally. At the Venture stage, Ataeum holds all IP in escrow and enables founders to assign future ownership and set clearly defined vesting schedules for all involved.

With the team in place and the MVP built, Ataeum Ventures then have the option of commercializing the project. At this stage, once the Venture delivers a commercialization notice, Ataeum then establishes the Venture as a Delaware corporation. In addition to filing the certificate of incorporation, Ataeum also obtains an IRS EIN number, issues stock to venture participants, creates contractor agreements for personnel, and transfers the related IP to the newly established corporation. At this stage, the Venture graduates the Ataeum platform.

Get Started Today!

Not only is joining Ataeum free, but members can interact with fellow members and create as many projects as they like at no cost. This includes unlimited use of Ataeum’s MVP flow, which guides founders through a series of questions to help them take their startup from the idea stage to a fully conceptualized MVP. Once a member converts their Project to a Venture, Ataeum charges a fee of $699 plus 3.99% of future commercialization entity (for a limited time, Ataeum is offering early bird pricing of $199 plus 1.99% of future commercialization entity). Ataeum then charges a $999 fee for incorporation, at which time the Venture becomes its own legal entity.

Visit ataeum.com for more information about the Ataeum platform. Like Ataeum on Facebook, follow on Twitter and connect on LinkedIn to stay up to date on the company’s latest news.

About Ataeum

Founded in 2021, Ataeum’s mission is to empower people to turn their ideas and passions into businesses, and build a world where everyone designs their own lives and loves the work they do. Ataeum delivers an all-in-one platform that empowers entrepreneurs to bootstrap startups in an automated, low-cost, no-paperwork way. The company’s innovative work-based approach minimizes co-founder uncertainty and conflicts, and facilitates fair ownership based on the amount of work performed. Ataeum is privately held and headquartered in Menlo Park, CA. For more information, visit ataeum.com.


John Snedigar

Faultline Communications

[email protected]

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Women of Color-Led Venture Capital Firm Fearless Fund Announces VC Week to Educate and Empower All

ATLANTA–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Starting Monday, August 23rd, Fearless Fund, the first VC fund built by women of color, for women of color, will kick off its inaugural Fearless Venture Capital Week: a multi-generational hybrid experience tailored toward educating all about venture capital and entrepreneurship.

The highly-anticipated, 7-day event will be offered both in-person and virtually via livestream with a jam-packed schedule including over 50 expert speakers, grant initiatives, giveaways, pitch competitions and more. Programming will include daily sessions tailored to building financial literacy within the following core demographics: Kids, Teens, HBCU Collegiates, Women Entrepreneurs, Women Investors, and Families. The week will close with a celebration brunch in honor of Fearless Fund’s recent $25MM+ round, where guests will have the opportunity to meet and network with other talented, like-minded individuals.

Standout speakers and events for VC Week include a Fireside Chat with renowned fashion designer Steve Madden, a Fearless VC Week x Daring to Disrupt Dialogue Discussion hosted by media legend Katie Couric, and an HBCU Pitch Competition presented by DJ Envy of the iconic radio show The Breakfast Club. Additional confirmed speakers include the following highly-regarded professionals: Brandice Daniel, Cindy Eckert, Andrea Brimmer, Tanya Van Court, Nikki Chu, Sheena Allen, and many more with a special remark from Former Mayor Kasim Reed.

“Our mission with Fearless Fund has always been to diversify the Venture Capital space as well as provide resources, tools and access for communities to learn about entrepreneurship,” said Arian Simone, Co-founder and General Partner of Fearless Fund. “With Fearless Venture Capital Week, we are doing just that, not only by providing the opportunity to receive financing, but also through educational and inspirational discussions that we hope will encourage guests to live fearlessly and bring their businesses to life.”

Confirmed sponsors and partners for the events include: Steve Madden, Ally Bank, J.P. Morgan Chase, Walmart, Mastercard, and UPS.

For more information on Fearless Venture Capital Week, please visit www.fearless.fund/vc-week.

About Fearless Fund

Launched in 2019, Fearless Fund invests in WOC-led businesses seeking pre-seed, seed level or series A financing. Its mission is to bridge the gap in venture capital funding for female founders of color building scalable, growth aggressive companies. Currently, Fearless Fund’s portfolio includes the following companies: EnrichHER, Range Beauty, AMP Beauty, HairBrella, Streamlytics, Capway, Clevr AI, AARMY and Slutty Vegan. The Fearless Fund team also runs The Fearless Foundation, a 501c3 organization with a goal to educate entrepreneurs through training, reduce racial inequities, and empower African-Americans to gain access to capital, as well as the Get Ready Venture Program, a 12-month training program for WOC business owners to acquire the needed training, mentorship, knowledge, and skills needed to gain access to capital.


Alexis Ford

[email protected]