BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – As more tech-centric companies make their way to the Queen City, state grants are now making it easier to succeed in this field, particularly for women.
Lauren Washington and Angel Davis are two thirty-somethings hoping to make it big with their social media app, “Keep-Up.” They already have financial support here in Buffalo, and now people are rooting for them to make it big in the tech industry.
“Keep-Up” filters out non- essential posts from the top six major social media feeds. But, Washington and Davis took a gamble to get to the 43North “incubator” in downtown Buffalo.
Angel Davis, Co-Founder and CFO said, “A quarter-million dollars isn’t a small chunk of change. It was amazing, and it was life changing for us.” They beat out seven thousand other applicants for that cash in the 2014 business- idea competition through 43North. It hands out the largest prize money in the country to bring entrepreneurs from around the world to build a business in Buffalo. “We really want to revolutionize the worlds interaction with social media,” said Davis.
Now they’ve hired a team of 7, including interns, programmers and a Data-Analyst to make it happen. So while many other African American female- tech entrepreneurs nationwide are slow to get up and running , Davis and Washington are beating the odds. They are in the beta stage of “KeepUp” just five months after winning the competition.
Numbers show just 26 percent of the computing workforce is women, and only 3 percent are black women. Lauren Washington, Co-Founder and CEO said, ” I think the number of women in tech is growing. We speak to them everyday. There are definitely barriers and challenges, but women are starting to take over the tech scene and it’s really exciting to be a part of that.”
Davis said, “Women are problem solvers. So it’s only a matter of time before we enter an underrepresented field, like tech.”
“Keep-Up” will have its full release this coming fall, now they are looking for feedback from users. If you’d like to download the app, visit the application website.