US United States, black women represent 2% of those working in the area of science and engineering. At the Brazil, there is no data on the subject, a consequence of the inequality in the market, which remains predominantly white and masculine. The information is PretaLab, survey carried out by the social organization Olabi.
However, with barriers, resilience also emerges. THE Plena A.I, founded by Samara Rodrigues, is a startup formed only by black women, which uses the data intelligence to help companies from the most diverse segments in decision making. Together, the company of five women intends to become na “more diverse the world in the matter of technology”.
The name “Plena” comes from the Latin “plenus”, which means something like “full, full, which is presented in all its potency”, according to the website Word Origin. In an interview with EXAM, CEO Samara Rodrigues says that the meaning perfectly aligned with the female name she was looking for for her startup.
The company, which started in the second half of 2020, offers solutions such as: Marketing and Sales, helping to map the behavior of the public of other companies in order to make the recommendations of products and services more assertive; Risk and Compliance, helping to prevent threats and implement good corporate governance practices; Profile Analysis, working on the recognition of the behavioral financial history in order to draw the best lines of credit for the user.
Like any business in the same industry, the data analyzed encompasses everything imaginable. In the case of a retailer, for example, from promotions and registration emails to how long your mouse stays over a link are considered by companies like Plena.
There is a catch, though: data intelligence is far more human than it looks. The algorithms used to create what the machine identifies are the experiences, education and thoughts transmitted through those who develop this system. If this experience is not different, the data reproduced will also not be. “Plena was born to fill this hole in companies”, comments Rodrigues.
Who is Samara Rodrigues, CEO of Plena AI
Born in Belo Horizonte, Samara Rodrigues officially moved to São Paulo in 2018 with the aim of entering the job market after many years unemployed in his hometown.
Samara has a great passion for studies and has always found it easy to trace her trajectory in school life. At just 5 years old, he applied for a scholarship program through IQ tests and cognitive intelligence, in which he passed. In his academic career, he opted for the field of Technology Studies in Management Processes.
“At one of the companies I worked for, I thought I could report any problem that affected me professionally and personally. There were times when I felt persecuted and diminished by phrases said directly and indirectly related to my hair, my color, origin, dress and so on. In my innocence, I went on to report to HR that at least, depending on the season, it served this purpose and, to my surprise, I was fired 1 month later, with more than 100% of the goal hit and super excited about an internal project in which I was inserted. . ”
It was with this negative experience, in addition to working on an Internet of Things project (IoT), which made Samara decide to start his own company. “I created [a Plena] kind of shy, because I’m not from the area. As I started telling people what the project was, the desire to help or participate was almost instantaneous ”, says Rodrigues, who says that it was this reception that made her believe that she was following the right path.
A Plena A.I
After months of preparation, Rodrigues met four black women in the job market who “took it upon themselves” to help with the project. “I told them that we would be a very different group and that we would stand out, but it was not going to be easy”, she recalls.
Samara joined a professionally diverse team to prove that these women exist and are more than prepared for their work: Erica Langa is a Data Scientist; Larissa Isabel and Vitória de Oliveira are statisticians; Lucimara Tejeda is a Risk Manager and Letícia Pereira is a Data Engineer.
At the moment, the CEO says that she and her team are in the development phase of their MVP (or Minimum Viable Product, the test to validate the viability of a product or business). Three key companies in the areas of e-commerce, alcoholic beverages e fashion were called to participate. “We are very young and we need this visibility, but we also need responsibility. We need to test our business model and then go ahead, ”says Rodrigues, who says that he sought out companies that already valued diversity internally.
While 2020 was an introspective year, 2021 will be for “letting go and being more competitive”, says Rodrigues. She plans to eventually open up vacancies for women of Indian and Asian origin and trans people, in addition to expanding beyond the area of data analysis and starting to work with IoT and Artificial intelligence (HE).
“Nowadays, big techs keep everything homogeneous and we know that it is purposeful, for the sake of thought”, analyzes the CEO. “Plena comes to show that being diverse is also generating profit, solving problems and filling holes. We are not just any consultancy in a room full of men, it is full of women with other looks and insights. ”