Level-1 CEO Thomas D. McElroy, II, a member of the Forbes Technology Council, authored this article about navigating the complexities behind starting a Black-owned technology-based company.
Starting any type of business is difficult, but starting a tech-based business can be especially challenging. To begin with, consider the fact that you have to be ready, right off the bat, to survive and thrive in an environment that is constantly changing and evolving. The field is already crowded with tech startups, meaning that competition for investment capital is fierce. And if you aren’t on top of your game 100% of the time, the competition will eat you alive.
Furthermore, while starting a new business is a formidable venture for anyone, there’s no denying that it’s even harder for Black-owned businesses to find their footing. There are many reasons for this, chief among them being the lack of resources, social connections and mentors. Many African-Americans come from homes with a lower-than-average income. At $40,258 annually, the average household income for Black families is the lowest of all demographic groups. This number more than doubles for Asian households, up to $81,131. Also, the overall number of Black entrepreneurs is incredibly small, meaning that few Black people have other entrepreneurs within their social group to learn from.
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