REVOLT is partnering with Target to bring funding and mentorship opportunities to Black entrepreneurs. On Wednesday (Dec. 15), REVOLT announced its upcoming multi-screen series “Bet on Black,” in which Black entrepreneurs can pitch their businesses to a panel of judges in the hopes of winning $200,000 and mentorship from Target executives.
“Bet on Black,” which debuts next month, will feature an array of celebrity guests, including T-Pain, Zerina Akers and DJ Envy; along with series judge/host Keenan Beasley, CEO of Sunday II Sunday; and judge Melanie Gatewood-Hall, senior divisional of merchandising in apparel & accessories at Target. BLK & Bold Specialty Beverages CEO and former Target executive Pernell Cezar will serve as the entrepreneurs’ coach.
In each episode, investors and industry leaders will hear from three Black entrepreneurs across a range of industries. According to a press release, judges will be looking for businesses that build communities, support social justice and propel the culture.
“We appreciate Target for being a fearless partner that understands and supports our vision to launch programs like ‘Bet on Black,’ which expand beyond entertainment to inform and inspire our community in every category,” REVOLT CEO Detavio Samuels said. “Empowering Black entrepreneurs starts with providing access to the capital, guidance and resources they need to build companies that revolutionize industries and make a scalable impact on the world.”
In total, Target will provide participants with $500,000 in secured funding, without asking business owners to give up equity. The corporation will also offer the series’ four finalists one-on-one meetings with Target executives.
“Target has a long history of partnering with diverse media organizations to reach our guests, and we’ve committed to increasing our investments with Black-owned media companies and better supporting Black entrepreneurs,” Maurice Cooper, senior vice president of brand and category marketing for Target, said. “We’re proud of our groundbreaking partnership with REVOLT, which is unlocking inventive and impactful ways to connect with and bring joy to our guests. Our investment not only enables the creation of a must-see series, it will also fundamentally change the trajectory of deserving Black enterprises.”
The statement arrives after Target pledged to spend at least five percent of its annual media budget with Black-owned media companies each year starting in 2022. In support of its Racial Equity Action and Change (REACH) strategy, the retailer also committed to spending $2 billion with Black-owned businesses and increasing the number of Black-owned products in its stores and online to more than 500 by the end of 2025.
“Bet on Black” debuts on REVOLT’s digital platforms on Jan. 10 at 9 p.m. EST, followed by its TV premiere on Jan. 11 at 9 p.m. EST.