Dec. 2 (UPI) -- Singer and music producer Pharrell Williams has launched a non-profit initiative for Black and Latinx entrepreneurs.
On Tuesday, Williams, 47, announced Black Ambition, a new initiative supporting Black and Latinx entrepreneurs who are launching tech, design, healthcare, and consumer products and services startups.
Black Ambition aims to reduce barriers to capital and bridge the wealth gap through entrepreneurship, provide applicants with resources and access to a network of business leaders, and open opportunities for Black and Latinx founders, according to its website.
"Recent events and tragedies have illustrated the always existent stark divisions in the American experience, and while entrepreneurship has long been a tenet of the American dream, marginalized people have faced long-standing barriers to success," Williams said in a statement.
"With Black Ambition, the goal is to help strengthen the pipeline of talented entrepreneurs and close the opportunity and wealth gaps derived from limited access to capital and resources," he added.
As part of the launch, Williams has created two prize competitions, The Black Ambition HBCU Prize and The Black Ambition Prize, to help fund creators.
For the HBCU Prize, Black Ambition is partnering with historically Black colleges and universities to offer funding and mentorship to current and former HBCU students as they develop seed or early-stage ideas and launch companies in tech, design, healthcare, and consumer products and services. The grand prize winner will receive up to a $250,000 prize, with at least nine other teams to receive smaller prizes.
The Black Ambition Prize will find, support and seed early-stage companies in the same fields. The grand prize winner will receive up to a $1 million prize, with at least nine additional teams to receive smaller prizes.
The Black Ambition advisory team includes Williams, with support from the global nonprofit The Bridgespan Group. Artist and fashion designer Virgil Abloh is also involved and designed the Black Ambition logo.