Abriana Walton


Abriana Walton

AfroTech blogger

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How Saweetie's Net Worth Soared To $4M After Being A Broke College Student

“Can’t stop, won’t stop, get guap.” Ever since Saweetie spit that mantra at the beginning of her iconic “Icy Girl” Freestyle in 2017, the Bay Area rapper has been on a non-stop grind to the top. The question now is how much is  Saweetie’s net worth? Celebrity Net Worth estimates it to be $4 million. Saweetie’s Net Worth: The Come Up Saweetie, born Diamonté Quiava Valentin Harper, has mastered the art of collaborating. The Black and Filipino artist also knows how to make a buck, fostering partnerships in almost every industry there is from gaming, alcohol, clothing, and of course music. The 27-year-old’s grind started back in college. While earning a bachelor’s of communication from the University of Southern California (USC), she started the brand Money Makin’ Mamis and sold hats and t-shirts. “I like to get my weave, my nails, I like going shopping. I had to keep myself up,” she told USC’s student paper The Daily Trojan. “And how do you do that? With four jobs.” Saweetie’s Net...

May 7, 2021

How Erin Winters Teaches An Audience Of Nearly 300K Subscribers To Boss Up Their Business

Financial literacy is a skill that most adults learn — or teach themselves — over time. Balancing a budget, building credit, and growing a savings is no easy task. That’s why Erin Winters — a visual storyteller and creative content strategist from Detroit, MI — uses her platform to share her experience on how she monetized her business and teaches her audience of nearly 300,000 YouTube subscribers and eBrand Club members how to do the same. The Howard University graduate started her YouTube channel full-time in 2018 after an epiphany led her to stop working temporary one-year contracts and pursue a more sustainable career as an entrepreneur. “I was very torn. I felt helpless because I didn’t know what direction to go in, if I should take the risk on myself and do what I believe,” said Winters. “Or if I should kind of keep following this path that I had already kind of mapped out for myself.” Winter says while she knew entering broadcasting would have been the safer path, she decided...

Apr 30, 2021

Vetra Stephens, CEO Of Metro Detroit's First Recreational Dispensary, On How Cannabis Saved Her Life

The public’s perception of cannabis has changed drastically over the years and for Vetra Stephens, one of few Black women in Michigan with recreational marijuana businesses and co-owner of 1st Quality Medz, her new point of view turned out to be life changing. From the racially repressive policies of the War on Drugs era to the disproportionately incarcerated Black people who are more than three times more likely to be arrested for marijuana, Black people have historically had a negative association with marijuana. “I’m like the average person who saw family members who were good people go to jail for moving product. So in my mind, if it wasn’t legal, then that meant to me that the product must be bad,” said Stephens. “So I had a negative mindset on the cannabis world as a whole until I understood what it was really about.” Stephens says as she began to learn more about how the plant is grown, she recognized that whether it’s growing a tomato plant or a cannabis plant, the...

Apr 20, 2021

Empowerment Brand BLACK GIRLS ROCK!® Partners With Microsoft to Help Black Girls Become Leaders In STEM

BLACK GIRLS ROCK! ® (BGR) is an affirmation turned award-winning women’s empowerment brand that is dedicated to celebrating and facilitating the advancement of Black women. Founder and CEO Beverly Bond has announced a strategic partnership with tech giant Microsoft to build technology infrastructure and empower more Black girls to become leaders through access to culturally relevant programs, leadership development, and STEM skills. “It’s remarkable to be championed by a towering institution like Microsoft to propel the work we’ve been doing at BLACK GIRLS ROCK! ® to educate, empower and inspire the next generation,” Bond said in a statement. “This partnership gives BLACK GIRLS ROCK! the support necessary to expand our work to help more girls find their voices, define their truths, and forge the futures they envision.” One of BGR’s core missions is to mentor, enrich, and educate the next generation of young women leaders by providing the tools needed to develop leadership skills,...

Apr 8, 2021

5 Facts About The Real Dr. Rainbow Edwards-Barris

Fans of ABC’s hit prime time comedy “ Black-ish “ know that one of the show’s main characters, Rainbow Johnson, played by award-winning actress Tracee Ellis Ross, is based on the real life of Dr. Rania “Rainbow” Edwards-Barris. Dr. Rainbow Edwards-Barris is the wife of the show’s executive producer Kenya Barris. She wins the hearts of millions of fans on the hit show because of her girl boss mentality, relatable personality, life experiences, and of course her stylish fashions. Here are a few things you didn’t know about the woman who inspired such a dynamic character. She is an author. Dr. Rainbow Edwards-Barris released a parenting advice book in 2018 titled “ Keeping Up With the Johnsons: Bow’s Guide to Black-ish Parenting.” In her book, the mother of six shares examples of embracing imperfect parenting and talks about how those mistakes can sometimes be the best thing for child development. The book provides hilarious descriptions of some of her personal challenges and...

Apr 1, 2021

These Metro Detroit Doctors Run the First Mother-Daughter Orthodontics Practice in the U.S.

Mother-daughter duo Jana and Janelle McQueen operate the first and only mother-daughter orthodontics practice in the United States, according to WDIV . Dr. Jana opened her practice in 1998 when her daughter, Dr. Janelle, was just a baby. Now, after following in her mothers footsteps — even attending the same college and dental school — the pair run three McQueen Orthodontics Specialists centers in Metro Detroit. Both women graduated top of their class from Meharry Medical College and Howard University. “I didn’t ask her to do this,” said Dr. Jana. “It just warms my heart to have her as my legacy; the comfort of knowing once I decide to retire, the practice is going to be in good hands.” They are now working to help other young women professionals like Dr. Janelle grow in this male-dominated industry by offering mentoring and job shadowing to individuals who are interested. “Especially the Black mothers that come in here and they’re bringing their daughters in here, they’re like, ‘Oh...

Mar 29, 2021

This HBCU Grad Has Helped Over 1,000 Black-Owned Businesses Generate Revenue

This Bowie State University alumnus knows how difficult it can be to market a business, so he started one to make it easier on others. Dante Lee is the founder of several platforms focused on promoting and sharing the stories of Black business and entrepreneurs including BlackNews.com, BlackBusiness.com, BlackHistory.com, BlackPR.com, BlackJobs.com and HispanicJobs.com. Lee started his marketing and PR firm while still on campus. According to Black Business, he graduated in 2002 and was known for his marketing genius and is the self-proclaimed “Revenue Doctor.” He estimates that he has helped more than 1,000 Black-owned businesses generate $90,000 in revenue via his press release distribution service BlackPR.com. “African Americans have an annual buying power of $1 trillion dollars,” Lee says. “But there are very few affordable services that help marketers reach these consumers. What I’ve created helps underprivileged business owners affordably and effectively achieve their...

Mar 27, 2021

Shola Ajewole Named FX’s SVP of Creative and Cultural Diversity

Shola Ajewole has been appointed the Senior Vice President of Creative and Cultural Diversity at FX. In this newly-created role, Ajewole will spearhead the company’s diversity and inclusion efforts via cultivating relationships and content material, assisting expertise to reach initiatives, and working with Disney General Entertainment Content’s diversity, equity and inclusion team, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Ajewole joined FX in 2016 and served as their enterprise affairs lawyer overseeing deals for scripted, unscripted, and animated series and fostering partnerships between FX and Walt Disney TV divisions. He has served as VP of enterprise and authorized affairs at Fox 21 TV Studi Ajewole says he’s honored to continue to uphold FX’s commitment to empowering a variety of voices and his own career dedication to diversity and inclusion. “I’m honored to take this new role and excited to work with John Landgraf, Eric Schrier and the rest of my colleagues to help FX build on...

Mar 24, 2021

TikTok Star Nathan Apodaca to Auction Viral Clip As NFT For $500K

TikTok has been known to change people’s lives. Nathan Apodaca’s life was changed in October 2020 after a video he posted of himself grooving on his skateboard drinking cranberry juice went viral. Apodaca, known on social media as “Doggface,” is a business owner who lives a humble life in a mobile home community in Idaho. According to Entrepreneur.com , he seeks to further capitalize on the success of his viral clip by auctioning it as an NFT for a minimum of $500,000. This business move is an effort to further his career as an influencer and ensure he receives financial compensation for the use of his image — an issue that is often brought up when it comes to viral trends and creators. The 23-second-clip will be auctioned on Rareable.com starting this Friday with a few stipulations. One being the song Apodaca was catching his “morning vibe” to— “Dreams” by Fleetwood Mac. While Apodaca was acknowledged by the artists in their own recreation of his video, he does not have any legal...

Mar 23, 2021

This Mother and Her Two Daughters Own Every McDonald's in the City of Compton

Patricia Williams opened her first McDonald’s franchise store in 1984. Today, Williams and her daughters Nicole Enearu and Kerri Harper-Howie own every McDonald’s in the city of Compton, according to Black Business. Williams and her daughters, who began working with her in 2000, have successfully opened 13 stores, generated almost $50 million in revenue and have employed over 700 people. Williams’ journey started over 30 years ago. She and her husband — inspired by family members who already owned McDonald’s franchises — cashed out their retirement plans and set out to open their first store. Their risk reaped major rewards, as the McDonald’s brand grew throughout the 1980s, Williams and her husband were able to purchase a second store before making another bold business move. When her marriage ended, Williams bought her husband’s share in their business, sold their stores and opened five more. This leap of faith required her to take out a small business loan, attend the required...

Mar 23, 2021

Snoop Doggs' Investment Portfolio Sees Big Gains Thanks to Klarna and Robinhood

The topic of Hip-Hop and money have always gone hand in hand. Initially, rappers were seen as financially irresponsible and victims of shady record deals that often left them in a sea of debt. However, in the past decade or so more and more artists have assailed to financial freedom by venturing into fintech. Snoop Dogg is one of the latest rappers benefiting from making successful investments. According to Crunchbase, the 49-year-old LA native has investments in both of today’s most valuable startups, Klarna and Robinhood, and did so at a price way lower than its current valuation. Klarna, a financial risk management company, is Europe’s most successful startup allowing users to make break up payments with no interest. And Robinhood is a free trading platform with a growing membership rate and a near $40 billion IPO. Snoop Dogg’s investment portfolio dates back to as early as 2010, according to Crunchbase. In 2014, he was a part of a Series B for Reddit which is now valued at $6...

Mar 22, 2021

Nigerian Bus-Booking Platform Plentywaka Makes Plans to Expand to Canada

A Nigerian transportation company has been accepted into the 2021 class of the Techstars Toronto accelerator program. The Lagos-based company, Plentywaka, is a bus-booking, “Uber-for-buses,” platform designed to connect commuters with busses via an app, according to TechCrunch. Founders Onyeka Akumah , Johnny Ena, John Shaibu and Afolabi Oluseyi will join the accelerator program backed with new funding and a new focus. Plentywaka found success in its first year of operation in 2019, transporting an average of 1,500 passengers daily and over 100,000 rides within the first six month with hopes of expanding their operations even further by offering a car service. When the pandemic forced the company to operate at 60 percent capacity, they received an external early-stage investment of $300,000 pre-seed from its parent company, EMFATO, and early-stage investors — Microtraction and Niche Capital — in August 2020. The company then decided to narrow the scope of their business on bus...

Mar 17, 2021

One-of-a-Kind D'USSÉ Bottle Signed by JAY-Z Sells For Nearly $53K At Auction

A limited-edition bottle of D’USSÉ sold for $52,500 in an auction over the weekend. What contributed to this hefty price tag? According to a press release, the one-of-a-kind 1969 Anniversaire Limited Edition “Bottle No. 1” has 24 karat gold leaf wrapping on the neck, the signature Le Croix de Lorraine symbol on its side, and an engraved signature from part owner Shawn “JAY-Z” Carter. However, Bottle No. 1 is the only bottle a part of the collection with his signature. On top of that, this ultra rare Grande Champagne Cognac comes housed in a diamond-shaped crystal bottle. The bottle was available for bidding— courtesy of Carter and D’USSÉ Cognac— at an exclusive Sotheby’s auction along with other uniquely labelled bottles as a part of their biggest ever whisky auction in New York. The sale marks the first time ever that a bottle of D’USSÉ Cognac has been sold at an auction, according to a press release. Courtesy Photo The proceeds of the sale will benefit the Shawn Carter Foundation...

Mar 15, 2021

Leading Beverage Alcohol Company Constellation Brands Announces $10M Investment Toward Minority-Owned Businesses

Alcohol beverage company, Constellation Brands, Inc. has announced they will be investing $10 million into the Clear Vision Impact Fund, an investment fund for minority-owned businesses. According to Global News Wire, this newly-formed investment vehicle was founded by the only U.S. investment bank certified as a women and minority-owned enterprise, Siebert Williams Shank & Co., LLC. Constellation Brands’ president and CEO, Bill Newlands says the underrepresentation and barriers within the alcoholic beverage industry have existed for far too long. “We remain committed to doing our part to help remove such barriers and we’re proud to partner with Siebert Williams Shank & Co. and other companies that have joined this effort,” he said. “Working together, we can provide greater access to capital and opportunity for minority-owned businesses as well as the employees and communities they support.” The mission of the Clear Vision Impact Fund is to foster inclusive growth for businesses...

Mar 12, 2021

NAACP Partners With Companies to Aid Black-Owned Businesses, Efforts Include $3M Pledge From Cummins, Inc.

The Columbus/ Bartholomew branch of the NAACP has partnered with several financial institutions to create the Bartholomew County Targeted Investment in Minority Entrepreneurs (TIME) program, a resource initiative for Black-owned businesses. The TIME program includes personal and business development opportunities, grants and loans, according to The Republic. NAACP Columbus/Bartholomew Branch president Johnnie Edwards says they are committed to helping bridge the wealth gap in their community. “Working together on this vision builds relationships and economic longevity for the Black community within Bartholomew County,” he said. The program’s financial partners include Cummins, Inc., who is offering support of Black-owned businesses with a $150,000 grant as part of its Cummins Advocating for Racial Equity (CARE) initiative. Cummins is also distributing $3 million to aid Black-owned businesses in Minneapolis, Memphis and Indianapolis, according to The Republic. First Financial Bank is...

Mar 11, 2021