NatWest and Black Seed join forces to support Black entrepreneurs

Partnership will provide support in seeking funding, gaining skills and networking

NatWest and Black Seed, are working together to support over 10,000 Black entrepreneurs across the UK to fast-track their businesses.

The partnership kicks off with a start-up weekend in Brixon, London from 18th to 20th November 2022, where the UK’s largest business bank and Black Seed, a venture capital seed fund dedicated to Black founders, will provide in-person knowledge and skills training.

Free tickets are available to Black entrepreneurs now, who over the start-up weekend will also be invited to pitch for up to £10,000 in investment, funded by NatWest.

Accelerating change

The pitching panel will feature Julie Baker, Head of Enterprise at NatWest, as well as other experts in scaling businesses. A similar event is planned for Manchester in the new year.

NatWest will also be sharing skills on securing investment and growing a business that is taught across its nationwide accelerator hubs at Black Seed’s new Brixton accelerator hub. The workshops will include sessions on building a resilient business model and mindset. Natwest will also make available on Black Seed’s website online content on these topics.

NatWest’s partnership with Black Seed helps to support CREME’s recommendations in its Time to Change report, which says that if Black and ethnic minority entrepreneurs got the support they need, then it could boost the amount they contribute to the UK economy from £25 billion to £100 billion a year.

Julie Baker, Head of Enterprise at NatWest Group, said: “We’re committed to supporting Black entrepreneurial talent and our partnership with Black Seed builds on our success in having 27% of our NatWest accelerator places going to ethnic minority business owners. The partnership also helps deliver recommendations that came out of CREME’s Time to Change report, which we supported.

The seeds of growth

“By working with Black Seed to deliver online and in-person expertise we can give strong support to ambitious Black business owners who want to take their company to the next level. The partnership is a positive next step, and we look forward to exploring more opportunities to support Black and ethnic minority business talent.”

Cyril Lutterodt, President and Managing Partner of Black Seed, said: “Black founders are over-mentored and underfunded. We believe that when we economically empower underrepresented communities, we all stand to gain from the benefits. This partnership highlights NatWest as a journeying partner to deliver support to these underrepresented businesses.”

Karl Lokko, Chairman of Black Seed, said: “Black Seed is more than a VC, it’s a community. We want to empower black founders to build the impossible.”

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