Black representation is key everywhere and its lack of presence in California’s Silicon Valley is something that’s become discussed more publicly during recent years.
Nas, who is an investor in companies from the region, recently told USA Today he thinks that not only more people of color should be represented at innovative technology companies but products should be made directly for everyday consumers of the same background.
“I think across the board things are starting to get better slowly,” he told the newspaper. “This is a tough challenge that needs to be addressed. There is really no perfect answer that can solve it today but there is progress being made.”
The Queensbridge native says most products being made for minorities aren’t even owned by them, which he believes is a problem. He also proclaims that everyone needs to do their part when it comes to bringing together all people in creating products everyone needs.
“It's really important because of the fact that there have been so many products out there for people of color that were not owned by people of color, and that matters,” he said. “There are so many players entering the game and changing the game, I am optimistic about the future of the tech world being more diverse. We all have to play our part and fight and not give up and make sure what we are doing is A1. Each one teach one, we need to pull more people in. There are so many bright people out there.”
Nas’s Los Angeles-based firm QueensBridge Venture Partners has backed start-up companies from Dropbox to Lyft, but has been looking to put their effort behind something more tailored to everyday use in the Black community. Nas is a current investor in Bevel's new electric trimmer, which he believes is the root entity in a full line of potential products for African-Americans. Walker & Company, who he’s currently backing, introduced Bevel’s latest trimmer designed for “barbers and consumers working with coarse or curly hair.”
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(Photo: Bennett Raglin/Getty Images)