Why the economics of equality is key to Atlanta’s growth

TechCrunch sat down with investor and entrepreneur Rodney Sampson as part of a fireside chat for our TechCrunch Atlanta Live program.

The topic at hand was his work with the Atlanta-based ecosystem OHUB, which was started by him and his wife in 2013 and seeks to engage the next generation of diverse startup and venture talent. Unsurprisingly, the battle is uphill. Discrimination within the startup ecosystem amalgamates racism, classism, and sexism. Black and Latine founders simply do not receive much funding; last year, Crunchbase said the number of dollars given to indigenous founders was too low even to track.

Atlanta seems like the perfect place to start advocating for change. Nearly half of the city identifies as Black and was a cradle for the 1960s Civil Rights Movement. Sampson was born and raised in Atlanta, although attended university at Penn State. He came back to Atlanta, though, because he felt it was a place to build; there was a diversity of talent and thought that intersected with innovation and culture. It was also home, he said.

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