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Lady Gaga’s One Time Manager Said Entrepreneurs Of Color Need Equal Access And Opportunity

Tech and entertainment mogul Troy Carter urged start-up companies to reach out and do business with firms and employees of color.

“I think that we’re at a point where a lot of people are starting to get left behind,” Carter, who reps John Legend and Miguel, said Thursday night at the Hennessy V.S.O.P Privilège Awards, where the cognac brand honored him for his advocacy work for entrepreneurs.

“I’ve been thinking a lot about the next generation of black kids,” he continued, “and I worry that they’re never going to get a chance to see the kinds of people who are in this room tonight: people who look like them, who have overcome so much false perception about who they can be and if they can succeed.”

Carter, who invested early on in companies like Uber and Spotify and is set to appear on ABC’s Shark Tank Friday night, said he works with diverse firms all the time, and there’s no shortage of talent among entrepreneurs of color. But the key was creating opportunities.
“This isn’t a thing where its charity or social impact work,” Carter added, “it’s actually profitable.”

Lady Gaga’s former manager said he read a report last week that found less than one percent of African-Americans founded venture-backed companies.
“For me, that was kind of heartbreaking news, and a little disheartening,” Carter said. “I think we all have a responsibility to fix this problem.”

Hennessy also announced it partnered with WeWork to support one start-up company with free mentoring and an office in New York City. Entrepreneurs can win a shot at working out of the Hennessy V.S.O.P Privilège Lab by visiting Hennessy’s website.

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