Google for Entrepreneurs Exchange: Black Founders

American Underground is partnering with Google for Entrepreneurs and Lincoln Financial Group to present the 3rd Annual Exchange geared towards Black founders.


“The program directly impacted the success we’ve realized in the last six months. Not only was I able to make connections with black founders from across the country who are dealing with the same challenges that I face, but I was able to tap into a group of supporters in the American Underground team that really opened doors."

- Harold Hughes, Founder & CEO, Bandwagon

Black Founders Exchange 2016


The Exchange is a week-long immersion program focused on addressing the documented funding gap for startups led by Black founders.  After last year’s Exchange, half of the participants raised capital and every participant recommended the program to fellow founders.

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Preparation for angel/seed funding (less than $750k) from skilled tech and business experts


Knowledge sharing addressing the unique challenges of Black founders


Pairing with a Thurgood Marshall College Fund intern during the program to support execution



Focus on Software, Consumer Product, Big Data, Analytics, and Internet of Things

Must have a prototype or minimum viable product

Have conducted customer interviews or have beta/paying customers

Participating founder is an original founding member of the company

Preference for startups generating revenue



Applications for 2018 open mid-July

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Entrepreneurship is in Durham’s blood. From our roots as Black Wall Street, to Research Triangle Park's founding, to American Underground's rise as North Carolina's preeminent tech hub--Durham is what CNBC calls ‘The Startup Hub of the South’. 

American Underground is one of the pioneers in inclusive innovation with nearly 30 percent of its startups led by women and 28 percent led by founders of color. The week will culminate with Durham’s annual celebration of Black Wall Street Homecoming which welcomes venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, and others to Durham.

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Loanable (Durham, NC)

Loanable helps you create friends and family loans online and repay them easily with auto-draft.

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2020Shift (NYC)

2020 Shift trains professionals on the skills they need to find careers they love in digital media and technology.

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Please Assist Me (Nashville, TN) 

Please Assist Me is a tech based comprehensive home assistant service. 

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DisputeDoc (Atlanta)

DisputeDoc is the first automation platform for fixing credit and improving credit scores.

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Reciprocare (D.C.)

ReciproCare helps senior care agencies and facilities find caregivers and helps caregivers find the best jobs for their unique needs.

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Partake Foods (Jersey City)

Partake Foods is a line of snacks that are free of the top 12 allergens. They're Non GMO, Kosher, gluten-free, vegan, and made with simple, whole food ingredients. 

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Ilerasoft (Cincinnati)

Ilerasoft’s software centralizes a health system’s equipment data on one platform to improve FDA safety recalls and identify defective medical equipment earlier and more accurately. 

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ScrapSports (Atlanta)

ScrapSports is the #1 platform for athletes, coaches, and fans to build their brand, share their story, and cement their legacy on the web.

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Zyrobotics (Atlanta)

Zyrobotics makes interactive STEM tools and learning games for early childhood education that are accessible, adaptive, and cloud-connected.

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Civic Eagle (Minneapolis)

Civic Eagle helps government and policy organizations learn, engage, and activate the people they serve through a suite of inexpensive software tools.