Serena Williams' reach and influence extends far beyond sports. Outside of being a top sports keynote speaker, she is using her platform to raise and empower women who are pursuing entrepreneurial ventures. Williams is one of a group of investors that, according to CNBC, has invested in a Black-owned healthcare company, HUED.
HUED, a healthcare company started by entrepreneur Kimberly Wilson, has raised $1.6 million in seed funding. Female Founders Fund, Serena Ventures, Black Founders Matter, Gingerbread Capital, and Halle Tecco were among the investors.
“I started this company because of my core belief in the preciousness of Black lives and the desire to protect it,” said Wilson. “Building a startup as a Black woman in health care is hard, incredibly hard. And, I think that’s why this round announcement is particularly special.”
After receiving inadequate medical care for a fibroid diagnosis in 2017, Wilson decided to launch HUED in 2018. She says her personal experience with bias and discrimination in the healthcare system inspired her to start HUED. HUED is a platform that connects Black and Latinx consumers with culturally competent healthcare providers. According to Wilson, healthcare workers who “specifically understand the physical, mental, and cultural needs” of diverse patients are considered “culturally competent.”
By 2025, HUED hopes to improve the lives of 500,000 Black and Latinx people by increasing access to high-quality health care. Wilson says she soon realized it was critical to form a relationship with the right investors to accomplish this.
“Female Founders Fund has been committed to investing in women and minority founders from day one. That is their North Star,” she says. “So, it already made sense to embark on that journey together. And for Serena, who has personally talked about the issues she has had as a Black woman navigating the healthcare system, obviously, there was a mutual sense of understanding.”
Wilson claims that with this new round of investment, HUED will be able to better scale its platform to promote physician and patient involvement. She also believes HUED will give anti-racism and implicit bias training to more than 5,000 healthcare employees across the country.
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