Goldman Sachs' First Chapter of Bigger Plan: $2 Billion Investment in Black Women-Owned Businesses

April 21, 2023 : Goldman Sachs is investing over $2.1 billion into Black women-owned businesses and nonprofits as part of the One Million Black Women program. Launched in March 2021, the initiative aims to positively impact the lives of 1 million Black women by 2030. The investment bank has committed $10 billion in investment capital and $100 million in philanthropic capital, focusing on access to capital, affordable housing, healthcare, education, job creation, workforce advancement, digital connectivity, and financial health.

Asahi Pompey, global head of corporate engagement and president of the Goldman Sachs Foundation, stated that the investment is a powerful signal to the marketplace, highlighting the misalignment of capital dedicated to Black women. The program aims to address this issue by investing in Black women entrepreneurs to create jobs, employ Black people in their communities, become leaders and mentors, and have a positive ripple effect. Pompey said that turbo-boosting Black women entrepreneurs is a key part of their work.

Goldman Sachs held a meeting of its advisory council on Monday, which includes prominent figures such as Obama Foundation CEO Valerie Jarrett and National Urban League President Marc Morial. The bank announced the $2.1 billion milestone, in addition to deploying $23 million in philanthropic capital that will assist an estimated 215,000 Black women. Jarrett stated that when Black women succeed, America succeeds, and investing in Black women is a good bet.

The racial wealth gap is the disparity in wealth between Black and white households in the US and is estimated to be at least $14 trillion. Goldman Sachs economists have found that the most efficient way to close the racial wealth gap is by investing in Black women. Closing the gender pay gap for Black women could increase gross domestic product by $300 billion to $450 billion and create between 1.2 million and 1.7 million jobs in the US, according to Goldman Sachs economists.

The One Million Black Women program is not just about investment capital; it is a holistic approach. Jarrett explained that the program listens, meets people where they are, figures out their needs, and provides resources and expertise to help women thrive. Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon said that investing in businesses that help Black women advance can build a strong economy for everyone.

Despite launching One Million Black Women during the pandemic, Goldman Sachs is now launching “OMBW: Black in Business,” a program providing support and resources specifically to Black female sole entrepreneurs. The program aims to capitalize on the lessons learned from the digital divide during the pandemic to create opportunities for Black women entrepreneurs. Applications for the fall 2023 cohort are open until April 23.