Entrepreneur Aaliyah Marandiz Wins $100,000 in ESSENCE Culture Festival New Voices + Chase Pitch Competition

Entrepreneur Aaliyah Marandiz Wins $100,000 in ESSENCE Culture Festival New Voices + Chase Pitch Competition

Ten black women entrepreneurs have earned their share of $250,000 in business funding thanks to the New Voices Foundation and JPMorgan Chase.

This in-person contest, held on Saturday, July 2 at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, awarded one (1) grand prize of $100,000; (2) $50,000; and (2) $25,000 in grant money, combined with personalized business skills development, coaching and mentoring for six months following the competition.

Designed to help women of color companies navigate the current climate and find solutions to the challenges they face, the New Voices + Chase Pitch Competition empowers female entrepreneurs to create, launch and grow their businesses.

The biggest win of the day — $100,000 to be exact — came courtesy of the brilliant mind of visionary Aaliyah Marandiz. Her company, Sugardoh, is a Texas-based company on a mission to make compostable sugar paste your favorite at-home hair removal method.

The $50,000 winners were Jordan Karim, founder of Flora and Noor, an inclusive skincare brand with halal, vegan and cruelty-free products, and Pauline Igdohgo, founder of Mocktail Club, a line of high-end sophisticated and healthy non-alcoholic cocktails.

The $25,000 winners were Shunta Grant, founder of The Best Today, a brand that empowers women to be proactive and intentional with their time, and Jasmine Marie, founder of Black Girls Breathing, a safe space for black women to manage their mental health through breathing and community ..

In addition to capital to fund their business, winners will be guaranteed placement on the Madam CJ Walker PACE (Purpose. Access. Capital. Expertise.) Fall 2022 Bootcamp powered by Babson College, helping to ensure the long-term viability and sustainability of these businesses. The $100 million New Voices Fund is a next-generation fund that invests private equity in businesses owned or operated by women of color. To stay up-to-date on all the life-changing work the New Voices team is doing to support, empower and uplift Black women entrepreneurs, click HERE.


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