Kristina Jones has worked hard to overcome enormous odds to became the 14th African American female founder to ever raise $1 million for her tech startup. Her San Francisco-based company, Court Buddy, is a patent-pending service that matches people with attorneys based on their budget. It's a win/win for small firm lawyers and for clients with limited budgets. Deemed "the Priceline for legal services" by Huffington Post, Court Buddy's goal is to set new standards in the legal industry by providing a unique matchmaking service to anyone anywhere in the world. The service started in Florida and has now expanded throughout the Southeast, California, New York, Texas, and several other states. Overcoming the challenges Entrepreneurs in general are challenged with finding capital to start or expand their businesses.
But it is substantially more difficult for Black women entrepreneurs who receive only 0.2 percent of overall venture capital dollars. On top of that, the amount they receive is considerably less, averaging about $36,000, compared to the average $1.3 million awarded to white male startup owners. But that didn't stop Kristina. In fact, she viewed her being an African American woman as an advantage. Being told no so often just made her more determined to succeed. She also said that when she was looking for funding, she looked far and wide which enabled her to achieve a more diverse group of investors. It meant she had to go outside her comfort zone and digging deeper. Her advice to other women Kristina believes that women
"undersell our power and the success of our businesses." She adds, "For minority women, we need to understand that we do have a seat at the table and it’s about believing in ourselves and not letting a 'no' stop us from moving forward.” She also encourages other entrepreneurs to endure and go through the much-needed refinement process that every business must go through. "You can't learn and develop the skills and tough skin that it takes to achieve the results without going through the process," she says.