A Snack Sized Resource Guide for Black-Owned Businesses
By Nikia Webster
Black-owned businesses undoubtedly face several challenges. To help combat the stressors associated with entrepreneurship and systematic oppression we’ve compiled a list of resources targeted towards promotion, financial support, and more.
The turn of a new decade has produced a number of unprecedented surprises. From the passing of NBA legend Kobe Bryant to the introduction of a global pandemic encompassed with immense civil unrest, and who could ever forget Tiger King?
Amid the various twists and turns the tale of Black business ownership is one of the exponential highs and unmatched lows curated by ongoing societal barricades. COVID-19 has adversely impacted businesses across the country, but the economic fallout has disproportionately devastated Black-owned businesses to a staggering degree.
In a recent study led by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Black entrepreneurs were deemed 3 times more likely to be unfavorably impacted in areas of business growth and profitability, due to lack of financial capital. The study also reported that close to 9 million jobs could be created, “If the number of minority-owned businesses increased to be proportional to minority labor force participation.”
41% of Black-owned businesses have closed between February and April 2020 according to research completed by the University of California Santa Cruz—in comparison to just 17% of White-owned businesses. Challenges have also appeared in attempts to secure federal funding. President and CEO of U.S. Black Chambers, Ron Busby advised the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship that some 70% of members who applied for Paycheck Protection Program loans were denied. He went on to say the problem didn’t begin with the pandemic, “Access to capital is the No. 1, No. 2, No. 3 concerns for Black business owners.”
Consumer support is extremely significant, but if you’re a Black business owner, you’ll need more than customer engagement to keep your business on the right track during these challenging times. The following list of resources is tailored to assist Black businesses in operation and efficiency.
Table of Contents
● Organizations: Organizations that support the development and prosperity of Black-owned businesses.
● Funding Opportunities: Grants, loans, as well as Black-owned financial institutions and services.
● Marketing, Promotion, Directories: Directories, websites, and tools created to advertise products and services produced by Black-owned businesses.
● Hiring, Human Resources: Establish a diverse and creative workforce.
There are many programs and organizations whose mission is to foster economic growth by holding up and advancing Black-owned small businesses.
1. Black Business Association (BBA): The BBA advocates and promotes the maturation of African American-owned businesses.
2. National Black Chamber of Commerce (NBCC): A nonprofit, nonpartisan, nonsectarian organization committed to the economic empowerment of Black communities.
3. Black Business and Professional Association (BBPA): A nonprofit, charitable organization addressing equity and opportunity for the Black community in business, employment, training, and economic development.
4. National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC): The NMSDC advances commercial enterprise opportunities for certified minority business enterprises and connects them to corporate members.
As previously outlined, Black business owners are scrambling to acquire adequate funding. The following resources can help along the way.
1. Minority Small Business Grants From Black Enterprise: A list of the top 10 grant opportunities for minority entrepreneurs.
2. Backstage Capital: "We invest in the very best founders who identify as women, People of Color, or LGBTQ. I personally identify as all three." Arlan Hamilton, Managing Partner—Backstage Capital
3. Accion Minority Small Business Loans: A nonprofit community organization providing fairly priced and flexible loans to minority small business owners.
4. National Association for the Self-Employed: The nation's leading resource for the self-employed, offering a range of benefits to help entrepreneurs become successful.
Marketing, Promotion, Directories
Starting a business is only part of the equation. Next comes brand development, advertisements, and networking. Confused? Relax, we've got you covered.
1. Black Texas Magazine Business Directory: As we continually seek to enrich the lives of our readers, this directory was created to offer immediate access to Black-owned businesses.
2. WeBuyBlack: Utilize this platform to list your products and services for a commission fee of 10%.
3. Support Black Owned: List your business for free in this Black-owned directory. You can also pay to have extended services like features, article coverage, and social media promotion.
4. Black Wallet: Take your business and events to the Black Wallet website and app for free. You can purchase web design, app development, and other services to help better your brand aesthetic.
Hiring, Human Resources
In order for your business to provide quality job opportunities for Black candidates, it’s important to register with some of the top minority recruiting platforms.
1. Black Career Network: A diversity recruitment platform on which you can post job openings.
2. Black Career Women Network: This website is directed at empowering Black women with resources to help with professional development and career mentorship.
3. Black Jobs: Promote your job openings to over 300,000 Black professionals.
4. National Black MBA Association (NBMAA): Use NBMAA to post open positions to a diverse candidate base.
As minority business ownership continues to grow, the opportunities for funding will continue to evolve. This list is merely a portion of the available resources built to further aid and promote Black Businesses. For the most up-to-date information stay locked into the U.S. Black Chambers. For a more expansive list visit Hello Alice’s Black-owned Business Resource Center.