Slauson & Co. + Grid110 Announce Inaugural Friends & Family Cohort

Carolyn Jones
Published in
4 min readJan 13, 2022


We are excited to share the 20 companies that were selected for our inaugural Friends & Family Winter 2022 cohort! This partnership between Slauson & Co. and Grid110 is the convergence of years of work our respective teams have spent focusing on access and inclusivity within the startup community.

While the number of Black, Latinx and female founders leading venture-backed companies grows, venture funding is still severely disproportionately allocated. Less than 3% of venture capital goes to Black and Latinx founders, with women-led startups receiving less than 2%. Entrepreneurial success and funding has historically been correlated with the networth of a founder’s immediate network. However, numerous studies confirm that founders from underrepresented communities are less likely to have access to these types of generational resources.

This is why Friends & Family exists. Each participating company will receive a $20,000 non-dilutive cash grant, with an opportunity to be awarded more during the program.

Beyond the capital given, Friends & Family is designed to help early-stage entrepreneurs strengthen their businesses, receive mentorship, and for some, attract capital investment. This twelve-week virtual program focuses on entrepreneurial management and personal coaching from top executives, startup legends, and industry titans including, Jim Goetz of Sequoia Capital, former TaskRabbit CEO Stacy Brown-Philpot, Buzzfeed co-founder and CEO Jonah Peretti and more. Although there is a lot of work to be done, Slauson & Co. and Grid110 are committed to this mission and the communities we serve.

We received nearly 600 applications from across 38 states. Among the 20 companies, 100% have a founder that identifies as Black, Latinx or AAPI, and 75% have a founder that identifies as a woman. The most-represented industries in the cohort include E-Commerce, Beauty, Retail, Technology, and Health & Wellness. Here’s a little insight into who they are!

Meet the Friends & Family Winter 2022 Cohort!
  • 1000 MORE is an app that removes barriers to civic empowerment for communities who have traditionally been disenfranchised, so that average Americans can disrupt the big lobby.
  • Beautiful Curly Me is a social impact company on a mission to instill and inspire confidence in young black and brown girls with affirming toys and accessories, empowering books and content.
  • By Ms James is a paper goods organization inspired by beautiful black people. Their mission is to illustrate the vibrancy and vastness of the spectrum that is blackness.
  • Cadenzo is a web-based platform that helps local musical artists and venues quickly find and seamlessly book one another.
  • CEREMONIA is a thoughtfully designed & curated lifestyle brand, inspired by travel + nature.
  • Church Space is a mission driven marketplace designed to support the rental of underutilized church real estate by helping churches earn income by renting their buildings as on demand event, worship, and meeting space.
  • El Camino is building the leading digital community for bold women travelers.
  • FELOH [Fell•Oh] is a conscious and inclusive social marketplace just for beauty.
  • Fil₂R creates sustainable water filtration solutions for at home use.
  • FRONTMAN is the Gen Z functional cosmetics brand for men.
  • Hank’s Mini Market is a family-owned curated market located in the Hyde Park community of South Central Los Angeles. Our mission is to use art and food to uplift and inspire our community.
  • Otis Dental is a subscription-based oral care company and resource for people seeking a better solution to their oral and mental health concerns.
  • Peculiar Roots is a clean beauty brand with haircare products for locs and natural hair.
  • Revival allows borrowers to buy back and eliminate their debt at the same pennies on the dollar rate that it gets sold to debt collections agencies.
  • Sons of Hollis is a men’s betterment company supplying natural products and grooming tools for men with coarse & curly, kinky or wavy hair.
  • The Black-Owned Market a curated shopping destination that allows you to buy from your new favorite Black-owned brands via e-commerce, physical activations, and subscription.
  • THIMBLE is a platform of pain and anxiety reducing products for common needle procedures like blood draws and injections.
  • Unoma Haus designs and builds high quality, off-grid van conversions available to rent and for sale.
  • WESTxEAST is a DTC virtual design service for custom-fit ethnic clothing.
  • Wordsmyth is a tech-enabled platform for companies to discover, source and hire Black + diverse writers for freelance writing services.

This is the first of many cohorts. We are in the beginning stages of planning for our next cohort so please keep an eye out by following us @slausonandco and @grid110 on Twitter and Instagram. If you are interested in making a donation toward our capital grant program for future cohorts, hit us up. Thank you!


About Grid110

Grid110 is an economic and community development nonprofit dedicated to creating clearer pathways to success for early-stage entrepreneurs in Los Angeles. Their mission is to foster the most thriving, inviting & inclusive community for entrepreneurs by making the entrepreneurial path more equitable, inclusive and accessible. Through their no cost, no equity accelerator programs, Grid110 provides founders with a growing community of fellow entrepreneurs, expert mentorship, and crucial resources. It has supported 215 companies that have raised more than $60 million since its creation in 2015. Ninety-four percent of companies supported by Grid110 are led by women and entrepreneurs of color.

About Slauson & Co

Slauson & Co. is a $75 million Los Angeles-based early-stage venture capital firm rooted in economic inclusion. The firm established Off Slauson as its non-profit arm to support entrepreneurs beyond the investments made by the fund.



Carolyn Jones
Editor for

Program Director at Grid110