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BPTN and RBC Future Launch partner to create the largest pipeline of Black early-career tech talent in Canadian history

Over 1,000 young Black professionals will gain access to career placements in Canadian tech and business companies

TORONTO, Feb. 16, 2021 – Today, the Black Professionals in Tech Network (BPTN) and RBC Future Launch announced their new partnership to create the largest pipeline of young, early-career (29-years-old and under) Black tech talent in Canadian history.

Through a three-year, $4.5 million commitment from RBC Future Launch, BPTN will broaden the reach of its current offerings and change how Canadian businesses attract, hire, and retain early-career Black talent in a number of ways:

  1. As a result of the partnership, more than 1,000 Black early-career professionals will receive full-time career placements in Canadian tech and business companies over the next three years.

  2. Many of Canada’s top-ranking business and tech executives will be convened around a newly launched ‘Champion’s Table.’ Each executive will commit a tangible hiring target before joining the Champion’s Table, using the previously mentioned pipeline of early-career talent to achieve their desired targets.

  3. BPTN’s ‘CULTIVATE’ mentorship initiative will now support more youth than ever before, pairing 350 Black early-career professionals with Canadian executives annually for direct mentoring and career coaching.

  4. BPTN’s ‘Pay It Forward’ initiative will now provide a total of $200,000 per year in funding to Black owned non-profits working with children and youth in STEM education across Canada. This youth-focused pipeline will support the next generation of Black tech talent by encouraging and nurturing their skills development. Applications for community partners will be opened in the coming weeks to help identify like-minded non-profit organizations.

Early-career professionals interested in participating in or learning about upcoming initiatives can do so on BPTN’s website.

“BPTN is proud to partner with RBC Future Launch to transform Canadian tech and business. With this partnership, BPTN will scale our services to reach Black early-career professionals from coast to coast,” said Lekan Olawoye, BPTN founder and CEO.

“We are excited to work with BPTN to continue bringing the promise of RBC Future Launch to life for young Black professionals across the country,” said Mark Beckles, Vice President, Social Impact and Innovation, RBC. “Ensuring the leaders of tomorrow have equal opportunity today is critical to building more inclusive companies and communities that can achieve their greatest potential.”

“We at League are extremely proud to be part of this fantastic initiative and I, personally, look forward to serving as Co-Chair of The Champion’s Table” said Mike Serbinis, founder and CEO of League. “League has a long-standing partnership with RBC and working together to build an ecosystem that creates opportunities for Black youth in technology is a natural evolution. League is committed to working with BPTN and the Future Launch team to provide mentoring, internships and career opportunities, and will be leading by example within our own business.” 

BPTN is the largest network of Black technology and business professionals in North America, with over 20,000 members. BPTN’s various services and initiatives also support Black mid-career and executive professionals through recruitment services, networking and executive support, weekly Masterclasses and more. 

RBC Future Launch is a 10-year, $500 million commitment to empower Canadian youth for the jobs of tomorrow. With a focus on networking, skills development, practical work experience and mental wellbeing supports and services, the initiative aims to help break down the barriers facing young people. In 2020, RBC announced a series of actions against systemic racism – including a committcommitmented to investing $50 million from now toby 2025 through RBC Future Launch to create meaningful and transformative pathways to prosperity for up to 25,000 BIPOC youth with investments in areas such as skills development and mentoring.

For media inquiries, please contact: mugoli@bptn.caLearn more about BPTN at www.bptn.ca.

 

About Black Professionals in Tech Network

Black Professionals in Tech Network (BPTN) is the largest network of Black tech in Canada, with over 10,000 members, and top 3 in the US. We bridge the “Network gap” in the tech industry by providing Black technical and business professionals with access to senior executive sponsorship, skills building and a strong peer network to support professional growth and career development.  We facilitate exposure for tech companies to hire and promote Black tech talent through pipeline building, internal culture development and becoming an “Employer of Choice”!

Leading Canadian Tech Giants are Standing with Black Tech

Toronto, Canada, July 30, 2020 – Beyond messages of Solidarity with the Black community, and donations to Black community organizations, there needs to be more! We know there are Anti-Black Racism sentiments in corporate Canada and we must go beyond one-time statements.  One of the many things in the sphere of influence for corporations is their ability to hire, retain, and promote Black talent, and to ensure they eradicate Racism from their hiring and promotion processes. Until they do that, then those statements are just communications exercises.

Black Professionals in Tech Network (BPTN), the largest network of Black tech in this country, have stood together with leading Canadian companies to create a more reflective, supportive and transformational space for Black tech professionals in Canada.  

“We are delighted to partner with Canadian companies who have stood up together to move the needle in the tech space,” said Lekan Olawoye, Founder and CEO of BPTN.  “Tech will lead the future economy, and these companies are leading the way for tech”.

TD Bank: “We are proud to be one of the founding partners of the Black Professionals in Technology Network. In partnering with BPTN, and TD’s Black Employee Network, we will continue to invest in equitable customer, colleague and community growth, professional development, education, culture and art. We are committed to increasing the representation of Black and Indigenous talent across the Bank, and we are grateful for our invaluable working relationship with BPTN, which is helping us strengthen our inclusive colleague and customer experiences.” Colleen Ward, Vice President, Delivery Shared Services, Technology, TD

Bell Canada: “Bell is pleased to work with the Black Professionals in Tech Network to build a new partnership that will both accelerate new opportunities for Black communications technology professionals and eliminate barriers to advancement for Black leaders. We look forward to combining BPTN’s resources with those of the Black Professionals at Bell Network to help expand opportunities and grow engagement across the Bell team.” Marie-Josée Boivin, Vice President, Organizational Development

Hootsuite: “We’re grateful for the opportunity to partner with BPTN to further our commitment to help grow Canada’s Black Tech Ecosystem,” said Tara Ataya, VP People, Hootsuite.  “In standing with some of Canada’s most innovative companies, we’re ensuring that important shifts are made around how we build strong relationships with members of the Black tech community, diversify our talent acquisition networks, ensure Black professionals are hired and promoted equally, and become better allies to our Black employees. We’d like to encourage our friends at other Canadian Tech companies to do the same.”

Rogers: “An important part of delivering the best experience for our customers is ensuring our workforce reflects the communities we serve. We are excited to partner with BPTN to ensure the ample Black tech talent across their pipeline plugs into ours here at Rogers as we continue to strengthen diversity across our organization,” Lisa Durocher, Rogers Chief Digital Officer.

Rangle.io: Rangle is a Toronto-based digital consultancy that builds leading-edge digital experiences using a unique partnership model. Technology professionals make up more than 50% of Rangle’s talent. “At Rangle.io, we value being brave and creating impact beyond the status quo. BPTN will guide us to through the uncomfortable, difficult and honest conversations we need to ensure actionable and lasting changes to support Black professionals in our community,” Nick Van Weerdenburg, CEO and Founder of Rangle.io. 

Top Hat: Top Hat is proud of our many organizational partnerships focused on driving real societal change through better learning outcomes. We are delighted to partner with BPTN and provide mentorship and educational opportunities for the Black tech community. Together, we will work to effect real change in the tech industry, and bring an even more diverse set of thinking to the work we do.” Meghan Smith, VP of People & Culture.

PointClickCare: “PointClickCare is committed to advancing the representation of Black professionals within the technology industry.  Through this partnership with BPTN, we will work to create sustainable action to progress on our commitment to stand with the Black community.”  Sandeep Tatla, vice president of Diversity, Inclusion and Corporate Social Responsibility, PointClickCare

MaRS Discovery District: “At a time when the new economy in Canada is being built on the backs of our startups and the advanced industries that they power, it is imperative that we set the table for a just future where diverse communities participate and co-create an inclusive innovation economy,”.  “In collaboration with BPTN, we will increase the participation of Black professionals and founders in the tech and innovation sectors while taking on systemic racism in all forms.” Yung Wu, CEO, MaRS.


It’s time for Canadian tech to lead the way, build more diverse companies and hire, retain and promote Black tech talent.  Take tangible steps and become a partner.      

For all media inquiries, please contact: media@bptn.ca

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About Black Professionals in Tech Network

Black Professionals in Tech Network (BPTN) is the largest network of Black tech in Canada, with over 10,000 members, and top 3 in the US. We bridge the “Network gap” in the tech industry by providing Black technical and business professionals with access to senior executive sponsorship, skills building and a strong peer network to support professional growth and career development.  We facilitate exposure for tech companies to hire and promote Black tech talent through pipeline building, internal culture development and becoming an “Employer of Choice”!

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© Copyright 2021 Black Professionals in Tech Network. All Rights Reserved.

© Copyright 2021
 Black Professionals in Tech Network.
All Rights Reserved.