Black Girl Ventures expands to Philadelphia

Shara Dae Howard
January 24, 2020 - 6:55 pm

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — A national organization that creates opportunities for women of color is expanding into Philadelphia. 

Marian Dossou, owner of KakeMi Cakes based in West Philadelphia is one of five "change agents" for Black Girl Ventures, a national organization helping women find lending opportunities outside of traditional means. 

Founded in 2014 by Shelly Bell, the organization is now expanding into Philadelphia. 

According to the Federal Reserve, the fastest growing group of entrepreneurs is young black women, and Dossou says Philadelphia is no exception.

Despite historically being excluded from mainstream funding opportunities, today, black women are making great strides in business using alternative lending sources. 

"We just want to even the playing field. We have so many women who want to do big things but they're not getting traditional sources of funding," Dossou said. 

The organization creates small and large events inspired by history — Harlem Rent Parties that were popular during the 1920s, for example — where they issue what could be considered a community call to action.

"Back in the day, if you didn't have your rent money, throw a party and people will come out and support you because they want to see you succeed and this just takes it one step further," Dossou explained. 

"We have a lot of partnerships. One of them being Venture Cafe out of the Science Center, that's a big partnership," she added. 

Black Girl Ventures also continue it's partnership with Pennovation and is starting a new relationship with Angel Venture Fair.