Google CEO Sundar Pichai
Google CEO Sundar Pichai

Google has created a $2 million fund to help Black-founded startups in Europe as part of its commitment to building a more equitable future for everyone.

This "Black Founders Fund" will provide up to $100,000 in equity-free cash awards to selected European startups, paired with up to $220,000 per startup in Google Ad Grants and Cloud credits and support from an experienced Startup Partner Manager, Google said on Thursday.

"We have a chance to help build a more equitable future, where successful entrepreneurs come from all backgrounds, and their communities can benefit from the long-term job creation and generational wealth that they bring," Marta Krupinska, Head of Google for Startups UK, said in a statement.

The move comes at a time when the Black Lives Matter movement has gained momentum in several parts of the world.

Today, with less than 0.5 per cent of venture capital (VC) funding going to Black-led startups, and Black people making up less than three per cent of the VC community, Black founders in Europe disproportionately lack access to the networks and capital needed to grow their businesses.

"If we want to solve the inequities we see around us, we all need to do the work and understand our role in the system, empathize with those who are marginalized, and take action to help," Krupinska said.

"Google has the resources to co-create viable, scalable solutions with those most impacted, and we have made the commitment to play our part and continue to learn."

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