Black Designers Navigate Steep Barriers to Financing

Image courtesy of Jamie Williams and Charles Royals, co-founders of Naclo Apparel

Black entrepreneurs face enduring challenges finding investments, though some are still finding new avenues during the pandemic.

When Jamie Williams and Charles Royals embarked on a DIY-style casualwear project last March, it seemed to be an experiment to weather the COVID-19 lockdowns that were starting to go into place.

As they began to quarantine with Williams’ parents in Durham, N.C., the duo sprung $250 for samples, got to bleach processing sweatsuits at home and finessed a small Easter photoshoot with family members modeling the samples. And so, Naclo Apparel LLC came into being, orders initially flowing in through DMs on the brand’s then new Instagram page.

Now, Williams and Royals, who have since developed a company website, teamed with manufacturers in Los Angeles, processed more than 1,000 orders and shipped them through the U.S. Postal Service, are ready to take their start-up endeavor to the next level. In 2021, the company plans to grow and open a warehouse office in Los Angeles, and bring on marketing and social media managers.

Credit: WWD – Click to read the full article

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