Hatch Enterprise, a charitable organization that aims to assist underrepresented business founders in launching and developing their own businesses, recently granted over £265k to 59 UK businesses run by underrepresented founders. Hatch’s partners such as UBS and Pizza Hut financed the Hatch Fund, which is meant to help business founders from diverse backgrounds overcome the barriers faced by these groups in the startup industry. The eligibility for the fund was open to graduates of Hatch’s most recent business support programs, which target support at women and marginalized genders, disabled individuals, and those from diverse ethnicities.
Access to financial resources is one of the fundamental reasons why ethnic minority entrepreneurs frequently abandon their business ideas, and only 1% of UK venture capital goes to businesses with all-female teams. Hence, the Hatch Fund aimed to help these underrepresented founders launch and grow their enterprises. The businesses that received the grant funding varied from community safety and tech-for-good initiatives to floristry companies, and grant amounts went as high as £10k. The fund awarded Olivia Peszynski, who runs Olivia Michaela Flowers, £1,000.
Olivia shared her gratitude, saying, “Receiving the grant funding was such amazing news. It is a great confidence boost to know that others see the potential in my sustainable floristry business, which focuses on conscious floral design, grows flowers naturally, and hosts wellbeing workshops with flowers for those looking for a reset or connection with nature. As a female, mixed race business owner, it is wonderful to receive this kind of support. I have already put the grant to use, investing in the business branding, website, and infrastructure, which has already seen a huge increase in audience reach and engagement. I am very excited for the next year to come.”
The Head of People Operations & Social Purpose at Pizza Hut, Emily Curtis, expressed her delight, stating, “It brings me immense pride to witness the remarkable journey of the New Founder Programme participants as they receive their well-deserved grants. We take great pride in being a catalyst for visionary business leaders, particularly those hailing from underrepresented backgrounds. We wholeheartedly embrace the magic and belief that propels these aspiring entrepreneurs forward.”
In a similar fashion, Sarah Payne, Head of UBS UK Social Impact and Philanthropy, added, “UBS is proud to partner with Hatch Enterprise to support impactful founders from underrepresented backgrounds to launch and grow organizations that will transform lives and communities.”