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Meet Ronell Miller of HBCUstartups

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ronell Miller.

Ronell, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I first got into entrepreneurship when I attended North Carolina A&T State University. Being around various black professionals that were interested in chasing their dreams was amazing. There was various creatives and business owners on campus with great goals. That started to feed into me when I graduated, I noticed that there wasn’t a place online where we would all connect and buy products from one another.

So that’s why I created HBCUstartups for this underserved community. When people tend to think of great tech startups, they look at stories from Yale, MIT, Harvard, but no one looks at HBCUs been a place for innovation. The thing is they are my school alone produces the most black engineers in the country who go on to do great things.

It took us about a year and a half to create the marketplace and we are excited to share it with the world. We are on a mission to serve the HBCU community. This is the 1st HBCU Marketplace of it’s kind. Professors can sell their books on here, students with businesses can sell, alumni, advocates, family, and friends who want to share their products to the HBCU community are all welcome.

Has it been a smooth road?
No, it hasn’t been a smooth road nothing really is when you’re first building something. The first mvp we built crashed on us and we had to start again. We didn’t quit because we know that this is needed for people.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the HBCUstartups story. Tell us more about the business.
We specialize in helping businesses market their products and services to the world. Sometimes we get people that need help with us making sites for them as well. Also, we get people that want help with a fundraising strategy and digital marketing services as well.

What sets us apart is our ability to build partnerships and execute. I’m a networker I constantly share and try to give back to others when I can and it has truly paid off. We’ve fostered a partnership with the HBCU Business Deans Roundtable so we will be giving a portion of our subscriptions to scholarships, equipment, and other needs for students.

How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
Buying products online will start to shift to audio and VR.


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