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Entrepreneur Dawn Dickson explains how crowdfunding jump-started her businesses

Dawn Dickson (Photo courtesy of PopCom)

Dawn Dickson is a serial entrepreneur and investor who is conquering the tech space. The Columbus, Ohio, native is the founder of PopCom, an automated retail company that works to make vending machines intelligent through data and analytics. She also runs Flat Out of Heels, a brand of rollable ballerina-style slippers, that are sold out of her vending machines across the country. Rolling out spoke with Dickson about her entrepreneurship journey, her experience in the tech space and how she managed to raise more than $2.5 million using a crowdfunding campaign.

How have you integrated technology into your fashion business?

We moved the company to just B2B, meaning we just sell to businesses and wholesale. The most recent big deal I did was with DSW. They started to distribute Flat Outs as a GWP or a gift-with-purchase program. They gave out like 10,000 pairs of Flat Outs to their DSW customers when they made a purchase. So, they bought them from me and then gave them out. We have also received a lot of orders from sororities [and] organizations like Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc., Jack and Jill of America Inc. and several programs that will order them for their organization banquets and conferences events. We get a lot of swag and event purchases. Now that PopCom vending machines are completed and ready to go to market, Flat Out of Heels will then be brought back to vending machines.

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