We had the good fortune of connecting with Autumn Kyles and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Autumn, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
I started Proxie during the pandemic when I noticed so many Black women entrepreneurs looking to start businesses during their free time. A lot of my friends were actively looking for resources to start and fund their business and due to being a successful entrepreneur with Detroit Dough, I knew that I had the expertise to share what I knew. I decided to start Proxie as a community resource hub that would bridge the gap between business resources and Black women entrepreneurs.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
Proxie is a community that bridges the gap between business resources and Black women entrepreneurs. According to Forbes, Black women are the largest demographic to start small businesses yet, they are the least funded. Proxie is the only business resource community that targets black women who are in the ideation phase or pre-revenue phase of business to help them grow strategically and effectively to gain more revenue and funding in the future. Since April 2020, Proxie has grown to a 1600+ social media community of Black women business owners from across the country and have partnered with national brands like HoneyBook. Flodesk, and Honigman Law.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
If I had my best friend visit Detroit for the weekend, I’d make sure to show them the best the city has to offer. The first day, we’d do a downtown tour visiting my favorite places like the Z lot, the Detroit Institute of Arts, and Belle Isle. I’d then take her to to a fancy dinner at Prime + Proper. The next day, we’ll do a bike tour to show her around the historic houses and neighborhoods of the city. We’ll of course visit the Eastern Market, one of the oldest open markets in the country. I’m a homebody so we’d probably get takeout from Bucharest Grill and do a game night in the evening! Lastly, we’d do brunch on her last day in Ferndale and visit some of the state parks in the suburbs.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I’m shouting out every Black women who decided to take a risk on herself and start a business! You are seen and there are people out there who want to help you grow and thrive.