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Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Sky Announces Funding Plans to Support Black Entrepreneurs

Key Takeaways

Sky identifies lack of Black founders as key barrier to increased diversity in British business, and says economic prosperity is at the heart of equity for the Black community.
Enterprise initiative to support the development of Black owned and led business in the UK and will lead to increased diversity in Sky’s supply chain in the future.
Delivery partner identified and to be announced in Q1 2022.

Sky has today announced funding plans targeted specifically at Black entrepreneurs to deliver its commitment to tackle racial injustice.

In June 2020, Sky earmarked £30million over the three years to improve Black and minority ethnic representation at all levels within Sky; make a difference in communities impacted by racism; and use the power of its voice and platform to highlight racial injustice.

The new allocation of funds will support Black business founders in the UK by:

  • Identifying the barriers to succeeding faced by Black entrepreneurs in the UK
  • Delivering practical solutions to support Black entrepreneurs to succeed, including a combination of business advice, mentoring and financial support.
  • Creating the opportunity to access Sky’s own supply chain.

Announcing the funding,  Sky’s Group CEO, Dana Strong, said: “We believe we have an opportunity to stand against racial injustice, and to tackle the barriers to success faced by Black people in the UK.  This new fund will help Black entrepreneurs to succeed and to drive economic prosperity, which is at the heart of equity.”

The successful delivery partner and recipient of the enterprise initiative has been identified and will be announced in early 2022. The delivery partner will work with Sky to address the unique barriers Black entrepreneurs face when starting their business. In addition, the fund aims to create scalable models for supporting Black founders in British business which will be published and shared.

The long-term aim is to incorporate these diverse-owned businesses into Sky’s own supply chain. This will build on Sky’s goals as a signatory to the Business in the Community’s Race At Work 2021 charter, which commits Sky to increasing the number of Black and minority-led enterprise owners in its supply chains.

Sky’s £30m has already funded a three-year partnership between Sky and Kick It Out to drive inclusion in football and make it easier for football fans to report discrimination.

In January 2021, Sky set ambitious targets to increase ethnic diversity and representation across its UK workforce. By 2025, Sky is aiming for 20% of its employees in the UK & Ireland to be from Black, Asian, or ethnically diverse backgrounds, with at least a quarter of these being Black. This target also applies to Sky’s leadership team.