This video was made by TheTagan. From this trip to Dakar, Senegal, she became inspired to start Founders Get Funds.
Founders Get Funds (FGF) is a global community and newsletter helping founders get funds together. FGF was founded by TheTagan in 2019 but the journey to FGF starts before then.
While working with the savings club L’Entente Feminine in Dakar, TheTagan saw women grow from a couple items of inventory to owning their own shop. However, they still lacked the resources needed to hire employees. She wanted to raise money for them by creating content telling their stories and sharing to social media. However, there was no clear route to raise U.S. dollars in Senegal. Additionally, the women did not have bank accounts to collect the funds. Her efforts were stunted, and she left feeling like she wasted an opportunity to empower others.
However, when she returned home, she still had the women of L’Entente Feminine on her mind. TheTagan wrote a senior thesis on the “The Impact of Microfinance Institutions and Mobile Banking on Entrepreneurship In West Africa” (find it in French here). My theoretical framework aimed to prove that Microfinance solutions especially ones with a focus on community, like savings clubs, increase entrepreneurship in these communities.
Additionally, during her Senior Year at Spelman College, she interned at a non-profit to help plan a Women’s Culture & Leadership Trip to Senegal. After the trip, TheTagan was hired by the Executive Director to build a website for a side project. From there The Tagan Experience, a digital marketing agency, was launched. This was the beginning of TheTagan's entrepreneurial journey.
Through being a Black founder and meeting Black founders, she began to think back to the women of L’Entente Feminine. Their experiences had similarities with Black founders in the U.S. Through more research, she learned that 93% of Black businesses are self-funded. Additionally, only 107,000 of the 2 million Black businesses have employees. Then, she imagined digital savings clubs for founders. This network would connect founders in West Africa with founders in the U.S. to increase access to resources in their respective communities and inspire them to grow businesses together. In September of 2019, she began putting this idea into action through Founders Get Funds.