black-founder-raises-$5.1-million-to-revolutionize-manufacturing-procurement

Black Founder Raises $5.1 Million To Revolutionize Manufacturing Procurement

Will Drewery, the founder and CEO of Diagon, a Black-owned tech platform that is transforming the manufacturing procurement industry, is celebrating having raised $5.1 million. Their innovative procurement platform promises a simpler, faster process for businesses seeking to build or expand their operations.

The funding round was led by The Westly Group with support from Valia Ventures, Techstars, Foster Ventures, Foxe Capital, Anthemis Group, Ventures Together, and REFASHIOND Ventures: The Industrial Transformation Fund, according to Shoppe Black.

Setting up new manufacturing facilities comes with its fair share of challenges. Finding trustworthy suppliers and managing complex equipment projects are among the top hurdles. Diagon steps in to solve these problems with a user-friendly approach.

The platform connects manufacturers with a network of verified equipment suppliers, system integrators, and service providers, making it easier to find suitable partners. Diagon also offers intuitive tools tailored for managing equipment procurement projects efficiently.

With Diagon’s platform, manufacturers can revolutionize their procurement process. Traditionally, sourcing equipment has been tedious and complicated. Diagon simplifies this by helping manufacturers find and acquire equipment quickly, much like large corporations.

Moreover, the platform features milestone tracking, real-time project updates, and robust project management tools, empowering businesses of all sizes to handle complex projects effectively.

Diagon’s leadership team boasts extensive experience in the manufacturing industry. Will Drewery managed significant capital expenditure (CAPEX) at Tesla, which inspired the vision for Diagon’s platform.

The company’s strategic focus targets the $640 billion North American manufacturing equipment market. This new funding will fuel Diagon’s growth, supporting platform development, talent acquisition, and outreach to key industries like aerospace, automotive, and battery production.

Diagon aims to revolutionize American manufacturing by simplifying procurement and empowering businesses to create state-of-the-art factories. With its innovative approach, Diagon is poised to reshape the industry landscape.

Learn more about the company via its official website at Diagon.ai

meet-the-nigerian-entrepreneur-who-creates-dark-skin-prosthetics-for-black-amputees

Meet The Nigerian Entrepreneur Who Creates Dark Skin Prosthetics For Black Amputees

Meet John Amanam, a Nigerian entrepreneur and the first African sculptor specializing in hyperrealistic prosthetics for Black amputees. With a bachelor’s degree in Arts and fueled by a personal mission to address the lack of skin-tone-matching prosthetics in the market, Amanam founded his company Immortal Cosmetic Art Ltd.

It all started when Amanam’s family ordered a prosthesis from abroad for his brother who lost a limb in an accident, but it didn’t match his skin color. Amanam, armed with a degree in fine and industrial arts, decided to create a prosthetic covering that matched his brother’s brown skin.

Turning a personal challenge into a career, Amanam now produces flesh covers for lost body parts, such as ears, noses, fingers, and breast forms, that especially match the skin color. He aims to provide comfort and boost the self-esteem of those who’ve experienced limb loss.

“It is important for comfort,” Amanam told Afro News. “When you go out there and you find out people are looking at your hand — possibly White on Black skin — it could cause discomfort.”

Amanam takes pride in being the first to prioritize hyperrealism in prosthetics. He meticulously sculpts each item, ensuring veins and nails are visible, making them indistinguishable from real body parts.

“There’s a difference between something being naturalistic and something being realistic,” he said. “You could look at a leg, or a product that looks like a leg, and say, ‘Yeah, this is a leg.’ But you could look at the fake leg and say, ‘Ah, this could [be real ].’ The difference is not being able to differentiate which one is real and which one is not real.”

Despite the challenges of meeting high demands, Amanam’s goal is to expand his company and make his products available across Africa. He stresses the importance of Africans addressing their problems and finding solutions on their own terms.

“It’s imperative that we as Africans try to look into our problems. Use our brains, our resources, and find a way of solving our problem,” he said. “If the White man would solve your problem, he only did it to suit his own needs and his own profit, the African would do it to suit the African society.”

Learn more about the brand via its official website at ImmortalCosmeticArt.ng

Also, be sure to follow Amanam and his brand on Instagram @Immortal_Cosmetic_Art

hbcu-grad,-creator-of-first-black-18-inch-superhero-doll-celebrates-having-sold-1,000’s-of-units

HBCU Grad, Creator Of First Black 18-Inch Superhero Doll Celebrates Having Sold 1,000’s Of Units

Shaneisha Dodson, a proud HBCU graduate of Grambling State University and the Founder and CEO of the Brilliant Girl, is celebrating having sold thousands of her dolls to young Black girls across the country. She says that she founded her company to create more representation in the toy and doll industry. “Growing up in Arkansas, there were not a lot of Black dolls on the store shelves,” she says.

This eventually inspired her to create the Sugamama doll, the first ever Black 18-inch superhero doll, and she has since heard so many stories from women who shared the same story of growing up and not seeing themselves represented.

Shaneisha says that these types of stories inspire her to continue creating products that promote positivity because she fully understands the impact that self-efficacy can have on a person’s growth. In fact, in 2022, she donated almost 100 dolls to children.

More than just dolls

As an award-winning playwright who loves to write, Shaneisha wanted to do more than just create dolls. And so, she has also authored and released two books The Adventures of Sugamama and Sugamama Saves Christmas to accommodate her best-selling doll. In addition, she has launched Positive Image Puzzles, a line of thoughtfully designed puzzles that highlight positive images surrounding fatherhood, superheroes, and girls having fun.

Shaneisha says that all are invited to celebrate the power of diversity as Brilliant Girl continues its mission of bringing more representation to the doll and toy industry and giving back to the community. To support her company, visit its official website at TheBrilliantGirl.com or follow the brand on Instagram @the_brilliantgirl

black-entrepreneur-puts-new-spin-on-outdated-backpack-designs,-partners-with-hbcus

Black Entrepreneur Puts New Spin On Outdated Backpack Designs, Partners With HBCUs

Meet Chad Porter, the 23-year-old founder and inventor of the Wearpack, a patent-pending detachable front handbag and backpack combined as one with an adjustable shoulder and waist bag. Because of its unique design, it’s lighter and easier to carry. He already has exclusive partnerships and licensing deals with three HBCUs  North Carolina A&T, Hampton University, and Simmons College.

Chad, who is from Cleveland, Ohio, says that he has wanted to be an inventor since he was in the second grade and he saw his opportunity when he was a sophomore at Ohio State University. He noticed that students were hauling fewer books and more technology around campus. That shift, he decided, required a change from the traditional, bulky backpack.

“The world is changing, the way we learn is changing,” he told Cleveland.com. “With the need for technology, we need to innovate that daily accessory. I invented the first Wearpack in my dorm room my sophomore year.”

After multiple drawings, the former engineering student set up shop in his room. “I learned how to use a sewing machine, sourced supplies on Amazon, and began prototyping. It went through various transitions. I only sold 300 units my junior year.”

He has since trademarked the “Wearpack” name. And he created the “ChVd Justin” brand using his first and middle names to make, market and sell the new product.

After the first 300 sold, the business school student asked customers for feedback. Women wanted an adjustable Wearpack. In newer iterations, they got that, plus more padding, a water bottle holder, and reflective material for nighttime visibility.

Using what he was learning in business classes, Porter defined his market as college students. To that began branding bags with university logos. So far, he has secured five, Division I university licenses – The Ohio State University, North Carolina A&T, Hampton University (Virginia), Miami University (Ohio), St. John’s University (New York), and Simmons College (Kentucky).

“In the process of working with universities we furthered our innovation,” he notes. “We’ve developed clear bags for fans to take through security at games. We also sell a four-in-one stadium product.”

Creating and selling a product was just the beginning of building a business. During his college years, Porter says, “I started studying different founders and different products – Ralph Lauren and Under Armour — to learn what was needed to build those companies.”

Using their early examples, he notes, “I figured out how to make the business happen without having a lot of money.”

After graduating in January 2022, Porter moved back to Cleveland. He’s been developing and making the product as well as seeking funds. In October, he received $25,000 from the Cleveland FutureLAND President’s pitch competition. He’s planning to spend the money on inventory and marketing.

For more details, visit www.chvdjustin.com

Also, be sure to follow his brand on Instagram @chvdjustin

Watch Chad’s interview about his social mission:
https://youtu.be/gkYZegri51Q

For press inquiries, contact chvdjustinllc@gmail.com or 216-213-5402

black-entrepreneur-launches-line-of-luggage-covers,-travel-accessories-that-celebrate-african-culture

Black Entrepreneur Launches Line Of Luggage Covers, Travel Accessories That Celebrate African Culture

Meet Teya “D-Globetrotter” Dalton, a world traveler turned entrepreneur who is the mastermind behind The Passport Hustle, a Black-owned line of accessories that elevate travel fashion and bring the adage “Black History is More Than a Month” into living color.

Travel has been a bit of a whirlwind lately. We’ve arrived in the new year and many of us survived the holiday travel season by the skin of our teeth. Even with pandemic restrictions being lifted across the globe, several challenges continue to test travelers’ resolve including inflation, natural disasters, war, and more.

Teya comments, “We now know that travelers won’t stop. And they won’t quit. Travelers are determined to see the world and celebrate loved ones in person, now more than ever. Thanks to my brand, The Passport Hustle, we can all say NO to boring luggage and travel essentials.”

Teya is a frequent traveler who often shares stories of her journey to visit 40 countries before age 40. She has traveled to and eaten in 43 countries across 6 continents and sends travelers around the world as a travel advisor and coach.

She is an immersive traveler who lights up when engaging in the stories of the people. She comments “Travel can enlighten you with just a glimpse into how locals live, use traditions to keep their culture alive, and erect the monuments we’re in awe of.” Lucky for us, Teya D-Globetrotter curates one of the best travel accessory stores on the market, showcasing culture inspired by international travelers and communities connected through the African Diaspora.

The Products – Show off your culture

Travelers often experience color & culture through amazing landscapes, architecture, textiles, food, and personal interactions. Most globetrotters will come across several instances of “black cultures” being co-opted by and for the profit of people in other communities. We seldom see products being created by us, for us, and/or to celebrate us.

The Passport Hustle offers BIPOC travelers and allies a unique opportunity to embrace the colors of the cultures that excite and inspire us. Now travelers can show off, show out, and magnify their unique self-expression. There’s no reason boring luggage options should thwart a traveler’s self-expression when The Passport Hustle offers a range of exotic travel essentials and accessories. Some items include Luggage Covers, memory foam Neck Pillows, Passport Wallets, Organizing Pouches, Carry- on Electronics, and Travel Sets.

The Passport Hustle recently launched its “Mud Cloth in Color” collection of travel products that are sure to agitate joy and fashion senses for all international travelers. This collection is inspired by hand-drawn mud cloths that are usually in earth tones. Marrying the mud cloth design element with vibrant colors gives travelers a way to keep ancestral cultures alive while celebrating their own vibrancy!

For more information, visit ThePassportHustle.com

Also, be sure to follow the brand on both Facebook and Instagram.

For press inquiries, contact teya@thepassporthustle.com or 646-470-9616.