US applications extended until January 31

Accelerator Hub for Minority Women Entrepreneurs
Positive Planet US is excited to announce we have opened applications for minority entrepreneurs across the U.S. to get exclusive high-level coaching sessions. These applications will be extended until January 31, 2022.

Positive Planet US has partnered with senior leaders at Capgemini to provide this 12-week “Accelerator Hub” program that will support 50 minority businesses through weekly coaching sessions.

The entrepreneurs will have the opportunity to learn how to start and grow a business, sell their product or service, leverage social media and other marketing tools, apply for a business loan, and get information customized for small-business owners. Participants will also be offered access to special bonus sessions presented by key industry experts from exclusive partnerships.

As a U.S. nonprofit helping underserved communities succeed through entrepreneurship, Positive Planet is looking for companies that are:

* Located in the U.S.
* Incorporated or not
* Have $0-1 million in funding
* Are currently raising or not raising funds
* In the following categories: Economic Development, Women Entrepreneurship, Sustainability, Small Business, Community, Commerce, E-Commerce, Women Founders, Women Start-up, Financial Inclusion, NGOs, Business, Entrepreneurship

For more information, to apply, or to watch a video of our president Ingrid Gonzalez, please use your LinkedIn account or Facebook account to log in to F6S.

Episode 14: Market Express connects local farmers to grocers in Ghana

Originally a grad school project, the concept for Market Express almost didn’t see the light of day. But, Ebenezer Lazar saw so much potential in it that he felt it deserved a chance as a real business. The result? An ecommerce platform for Ghanaian grocery retailers, connecting farmers with a market directly.

The goals and benefits of Market Express extend beyond simple convenience. Tune in to hear Ebenzer explain how the online ordering system aims to improve the quality of life for everyday Ghanaians: saving time, improving stock management, opening doors to micro-financing, and even reducing the congested streets filled with traffic.

Listen on Apple Podcasts
Listen to Episode 14 on Apple Podcasts
Listen on Spotify
Listen to Episode 14 on Spotify

Episode 13: CommonTime provides global access to arts education

In 2020, Christine Matovich founded CommonTime, an online platform providing global access to the arts. With the onset of the pandemic, countless artists were unemployed, museums and performing arts centers closed, and educators teaching online were in need of new material to connect with their students.

Mission statement CommonTime

Christine responded by building a digital platform to connect students and educators to teaching artists; private art teachers to individual learners; and arts organizations to educational institutions—regardless of location. And so, CommonTime’s existence is proof that out of necessity, creative solutions are born.

In this episode, we chat with Christine about the role of the arts as a vital, integrated, and accessible part of the education curriculum, the industry’s contribution to the global economy, and how to surround yourself with great people to build a successful business. She also gives us a tip on where to find a thriving creative community in New York (hint: it’s not Manhattan).

A graduate of Positive Planet US’s most recent Accelerator Hub, Christine is a multi-hyphenate (opera singer, cellist, and artist manager are just some hats she has worn) who has described herself as “never comfortable with just a single track with my craft.”

Tune in to hear her speak passionately about entrepreneurship and creativity and all the most relevant in 2021, the year of Creative Economy for Sustainable Development, as declared by the UN.

Listen on Spotify
Listen to Episode 13 on Spotify.
Listen on Apple Podcasts
Listen to Apple Podcasts on Spotify.

Episode 12: Zouaoui and Harrak challenge cultural norms in Morocco’s first ridesharing app

Co-Founders and childhood friends, Hicham Zouaoui and Otman Harrak, came back to Casablanca after spending high school and college apart, experiencing different cultures and realities. Once back together, they had the idea to build out a new business model and the first ridesharing app in Morocco.

Otman Harrak (gauche) et Hicham Zouaoui (Droite), fondateurs de l’application Pip Pip Yallah. Image courtesy of We Love Buzz.

Now they’re working together in a big, beautiful office overlooking the cinematic backdrop of Casablanca. “It’s been a wonderful adventure,” says Harrak. Carpooling isn’t a new concept for a culture that already has sharing as a big part of its values. This is what made it challenging for people to understand that it was ok to exchange money for something that is usually considered simply neighborly ⥖ even among strangers.

Zouaoui started Pip Pip Yalah through a Facebook group, just connecting people wanting to travel between universities and their hometowns. Ridesharing. They started talking about the new concept just among friends. They got all the way up to 100 users before reconnecting again with Harrak, coming back from studying in the London School of Business and the Grenoble École de Management.

Pip Pip Yalah now has recorded over 26 million kilometers in shared rides, reducing CO2 emission by 6,500 tons as people shared their rides and did not use their own cars.

Zouaoui and Harrak talk us through serial-entrepreneurship, battling “against” cultural norms, user experience and driving social, economic, and ecological impacts by facilitating and incentivizing ridesharing throughout Morocco.

Their pure friendship and excitement to conquer their mission together really comes out clearly in this very light and joyful conversation. “It challenged us to battle through interpreting  English and French context together at the same time,” they agree. Their story of beating the odds is certainly inspiring and we know they are only at the beginning of their journey.

Learn more about Pip Pip Yalah downloading their app or visiting their website.

Listen on Spotify
Listen to Episode 12 on Spotify.
Listen on Apple Podcasts
Listen to Episode 12 on Apple Podcasts.