Setting Millennials On Global Representation: Zim Flores, Travel Noire & Coloured Peoples’ Love Story

Zim Flores (formerly Ugochukwu) is an entrepreneur, visionary, and advocate for diversity and inclusion in the travel and fashion industries. Her journey from founding Travel Noire to establishing Italicist reflects her commitment to empowering marginalized communities and reshaping the narrative around international travel and fashion. In 2013, Flores founded Travel Noire, a groundbreaking platform dedicated to making international travel more inclusive for people of color.

With a focus on storytelling, community building, and providing resources tailored to the unique needs of travelers of color, Travel Noire quickly gained traction and reached over 2 million millennials monthly. Through its website and social media channels, particularly Instagram where it amassed over 180,000 followers, Travel Noire became a beacon of inspiration and empowerment for aspiring travelers seeking representation and guidance.

Flores’ innovative approach to travel media did not go unnoticed. In 2016, she was recognized for her achievements and inclusion on the Forbes 30 Under 30 Media list, solidifying her status as a trailblazer in the industry. Despite Travel Noire’s success, Flores remained steadfast in her mission to amplify underrepresented voices and experiences in travel. In 2017, Blavity, a media and events startup focused on black millennials and black culture, acquired Travel Noire, signaling a new chapter for the platform. Despite the acquisition, Flores continued to serve as the Chief Brand Officer of Travel Noire, ensuring that its core values and commitment to diversity remained intact under new ownership.

Building on her entrepreneurial spirit and passion for empowering women, Flores ventured into the fashion industry in March 2020 with the launch of Italicist. This platform aimed to revolutionize the shopping experience for women by providing personalized fashion recommendations, particularly focusing on modest clothing options. By leveraging technology and data-driven algorithms, Italicist empowered women to find clothing that aligned with their personal style preferences and cultural values.

Throughout her career, Flores has embodied the qualities of a true visionary and changemaker. Her belief in the power of storytelling, art, and design has driven her to create platforms that not only provide practical solutions but also inspire and uplift communities. From founding Travel Noire to launching Italicist, she has demonstrated her unwavering commitment to empowering marginalized communities and reshaping industries for the better. As she continues to build and innovate, Flores serves as an inspiration to aspiring entrepreneurs and changemakers worldwide.