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'Wild Accelerator' building next generation of businesses in Louisville

Wild is designed to provide training and mentorship to Black and Latinx woman founders in Louisville.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Inside Nulu's Story Louisville space, a group of entrepreneurs is building the city's next billion-dollar businesses. 

Wild is an accelerator focused on giving Black and Latinx women the resources they need to kickstart companies. 

"It's really expanded my mind to the possibilities, to the ways in which we could grow," Marissa Wilson, founder of luggage brand Capsoul, said. 

"As Black and brown women sometimes our dreams get stifled by the things we don't have just laying right there on the table," Cherena Fox, co-founder of The Elephant in the Room, said. 

Wild is currently in its third cohort. The founders go through a 14-week program with mentorship, coaching and office space. 

Natalia Bishop, chairwoman for the program, said the mission is to help people from marginalized backgrounds bring their ideas to light. 

"There is a gap of funding," she said. "And the idea that good ideas get funded is essentially not true." 

"When you don't know something is possible for you, when you haven't seen other people that look like you achieve those things, it almost reinforces these limiting beliefs," Wilson said. 

The companies the cohort members have founded run the gamut from products, to tech, to platforms to make other companies work smarter. 

"We're all going to have major companies housed right here and it gives us the opportunity to bring something fresh to the city," Keionna Baker, also of The Elephant in the Room said.  

The women all share one big goal -- they want to build billion-dollar businesses right here in Louisville. 

"Those founders are typically fixing problems that are really community centric, but have a global impact," Bishop said.  

They say the key is in breaking barriers and unlocking doors, not just for this group, but for future founders. 

"You need people to open doors for you, you need people to walk the journey with you, you need people to understand what you're doing and connect with you," Lourdes Rosillo of Komiuniti, a tech platform to help community-based businesses, said.

The Wild cohort is almost over, and the founders are preparing for Demo Day. 

It's a chance to show off their companies to the community and to prepare for the next steps in investment. 

Demo Day is happening June 1st. 

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