Ulta launches business accelerator for BIPOC brands
Ulta Beauty has opened applications for its inaugural Muse Accelerator program dedicated to supporting early-stage BIPOC beauty brands to launch and thrive in retail.
The beauty retailer said the program aims to support participants with time, resources and mentorship to prepare them for retail readiness, while offering a nurturing community to help empower.
As part of the program, eight BIPOC beauty brand applicants will receive $50,000 in financial support to propel brand development, and will be invited to follow a 10-week curriculum featuring virtual and in-person sessions focused on brand development.
This will include learning opportunities from subject matter experts across various topics such as merchandising, supply chain, legal and marketing, as well as brand founders and industry leaders’ engagement during fireside chats and panels.
To ensure a successful experience, the curriculum was created in partnership with Venture Noire, a non-profit organization that specializes in accelerator programs dedicated to Black and minority entrepreneurs.
“Muse Accelerator is another way we’re bringing to life our commitment to diversifying our unparalleled assortment so all guests can see themselves reflected at Ulta Beauty,” said Monica Arnaudo, chief merchandising officer, Ulta Beauty.
“We believe it is our responsibility to take tangible steps to create foundational industry change. As a destination where brands can learn, thrive and successfully reach unchartered heights, this program helps us further nurture emerging BIPOC brands and create meaningful impact for the communities we serve, our industry and the world.”
Accepted applicants will also be paired with a mentor. Mentors include Shontay Lundy, founder of Black Girl Sunscreen, Ron Robinson, founder and CEO of BeautyStat, Desirée Rogers, CEO of BLK/OPL and Julissa Prado, founder and CEO of Rizos Curls.
“Having built and launched a brand from concept to aisle, I understand the critical importance of mentors as guides along the way – especially as a minority navigating new territories,” said Lundy. “I was fortunate to have had such support and honored to have the opportunity to pay it forward through Ulta Beauty’s Muse Accelerator.”
Eligible early-stage BIPOC brands are encouraged to apply at Ulta.com/muse-accelerator. The deadline to submit is June 30.
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