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Detroit Black-Owned Tech Company Wins Pharrell Williams $1 Million Black Ambition Prize Competition

Detroit Black-Owned Tech Company Wins Pharrell Williams $1 Million Black Ambition Prize Competition

  • Pharell Williams founded Black Ambition to focus on closing the opportunity and wealth gap through entrepreneurship.
  • Black Ambition provides mentorship and access to capital to high-growth startups founded by Black and Latinx entrepreneurs.
  • $1 Million Prize Winner Livegistics: A cloud-based material management operating system that connects all stakeholders of a construction project in a real-time GPS tracked and mapping network of digital information.

July 13, 2021, Detroit, Mich. - Detroit-based minority-owned tech company, Livegistics, wins Pharrell Williams's "Black Ambition" $1 million prize competition, as announced online Tuesday, July 13. "Black Ambition" provides a pathway to success for Black and Latin entrepreneurs who are launching early-stage tech, design, healthcare, and consumer products and services start-ups. Headquartered in Detroit, Livegistics understands the components needed for a renaissance movement and is committed to providing a product and experience that will revolutionize the construction industry that is ripe for change.

Founded in 2017, minority-owned company Livegistics is quickly becoming the top disruptor in the tech industry. CEO and Co-Founder Justin Turk, with over 20 years of experience in civil engineering and construction management, Justin applied for the Black Ambition program to take advantage of each and every opportunity to grow the business, his intellect, and resources. Livegistics’ groundbreaking technology helps companies replace their paper with technology to bridge the gaps between civil construction, demolition, waste management, and logistics.

According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, African-Americans make up less than five percent of the technology industry's workforce in Silicon Valley, and the percentage of African-Americans that occupy executive positions in the industry may be as low as one percent, according to the commission. Independent entrepreneurs reach the same closed-door or minimal access as those already established in the sector. "Winning this competition is bigger than just the prize money", Turk says. "When we first entered the tech start-up world as two Black entrepreneurs, we had no idea how to navigate in this space. Now, we are not only being taught how to navigate, but also to dominate in an industry that just recently decided to grant access to people of color. The information, skills and tools we are being taught will not only help us thrive in our business, but it will break open doors that we never even knew existed. We don’t just want an invite, we want to create the guest list."

With Livegistics, civil, demolition, and trucking companies can now easily convert paper truck tickets into a real-time continuous flow of information, data, and metrics that allow them to be in better control of cash flow and planning for the future. What would normally take months to audit and reconcile is complete in a matter of seconds using Livegistics.

Customers who use Livegistics see a return on their investment in less than 4 months.

  • Eliminate revenue losses from lost tickets
  • Drastically reduce time and labor associated with ticket reconciliation
  • Manage cost on a real-time basis
  • Data analytics gives a competitive advantage over the competition
  • Large reduction in field errors

The COVD-19 Pandemic saw a surge in demand as the trucking industry single-handedly kept the country moving with the shutdown. "U.S. trucking companies are scrambling to hire more drivers as roaring consumer demand and tight shipping capacity stoke a resurgent freight market. Knight-Swift Transportation Holdings Inc., the largest truckload carrier in North America, is the latest trucking company to raise pay", per The Wall Street Journal. Livegistics software is installed in five Waste Management Landfills across three states, including Auburn Hills, Lenox, and Wayne, Michigan, allowing thousands of customers that cross their scales to use the highly sought out software.

Livegistics plans to invest in the tech industry, increasing the workforce, specifically hiring other Black entrepreneurs, and strategically spending the prize money on sales and marketing to continue to grow and scale the company. The inaugural Black Ambition prize winners were announced online Tuesday, July 13 at 5:30 pm, with earnings ranging from $100,000 to $1 million. The event featured programming, including remarks by Pharrell, a special performance by Tobe Nwigwe, and founder stories.

Justin Turk CEO and Co-Founder:

Justin Turk is committed to leveraging technology against the archaic practices of modern construction. He believes that transparency, accountability and immediate access to information are essential to eective business growth for all parties involved. Before becoming CEO of Livegistics he held a role as Vice President and Chief Estimator at one of the largest heavy civil (Minority-Owned) construction companies in Michigan. With both an educational background in computer science as well as civil engineering/construction management, Justin was instrumental in the establishment and advancement of construction technology use throughout the company.

A member of the Metro-Detroit Black Business Alliance and EY's (Ernst and Young) Entrepreneur Access Network, Mr. Turk is a third-generation entrepreneur in the construction industry. Following in the footsteps of his father and grandfather who once built the largest minority-owned asphalt paving company in Michigan, he is committed to making sure that minorities have a sustainable seat at the table as both entrepreneurs in construction and tech. He currently resides in Metro Detroit with his wife and two children.

 

Andre Davis, CPA CFO and Co-Founder:

Growing up as one of eight children in a single-parent home, Andre Davis grew to value community, hard work, and purpose as he dedicated himself to helping others through financial services. After leaving Ernst & Young LLP, and with a goal of helping startup entrepreneurs, Andre started his own accounting and financial services practice dedicated to helping small businesses thrive. In addition to his practice, Andre has served as auditor, financial consultant, investment advisor, controller, vice president of finance, and CFO throughout his career, working with companies in manufacturing, financial services, construction, non-profit, and many other industries over the past twenty years.

As Co-Founder and CFO of Livegistics, Andre has helped structure, develop and position the organization for accelerated exponential growth. Leveraging his experience, he aspires to see Livegistics realize its potential and pioneer change in the construction industry.

Andre holds a Master’s Degree in Accounting and is a CPA with long-standing memberships with the AICPA and MICPA. He currently resides in Metro Detroit with his wife and five children.

Black Ambition Social Handles:
Instagram: @blackambitionprize
Twitter: @blackambitionpz
Facebook: @blackambitionprize
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/black-ambition
Event Website: https://blackambitionprize.com/demo-day-2021

Company Website: https://livegistics.com
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/livegistics-llc Facebook: @LivegisticsLLC
Instagram: @livegisticsllc
Twitter: @livegistics

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