Essence Creators and Makers Fund

New YorkNY 
Size of fund:
Seed, Early

This $20 million fund, launched by Essence Ventures in 2018, is looking for a very specific type of entrepreneur: creators and makers of color who will tell the stories of black women across a variety of media. The fund will share ownership rights with creators, and Essence magazine will promote the projects across its platforms. The first partner is Queen Latifah's production company, Flavor Unit Entertainment. Richelieu Dennis, the founder of Shea Moisture, is the new owner of Essence and the force behind the new fund, which he says will help ensure black creators "can own our content and not just be work for hire." Dennis's separate $100 million New Voices Fund invests in startups run by black women across a number of industries.