Black Spending Power And How To Use It To Our Advantage Was The Main Course For AfroTech Executive Washington, D.C.
Photo Credit: Jemal Countess

Black Spending Power And How To Use It To Our Advantage Was The Main Course For AfroTech Executive Washington, D.C.

AfroTech Executive is still making its rounds, continuing to fuel leaders with the resources needed to not only succeed but smash ceilings, move the needle, and make room for generations to come.

Before it makes its way to Los Angeles, CA, it stopped in D.C. for a sold-out event, where the room was filled with corporate executives, founders, and investors in an effort to cultivate connections and also build community.

What’s more, spotlighting opportunities to cultivate Black wealth was the main course of the day on May 19, 2022, where panels included The Power Of The Black Dollar and Cultivating Capital In A Black Tomorrow. Plus, we ended the night with something sweet as DJ 5’9 set the vibes for a Networking Reception.

Photo Credit: Jemal Countess

The Black Consumer

The day kicked off with a conversation on social impact and how focusing on the Black dollar is imperative because just like the culture, we run the world.

Now, while we’ve always heard that the Black consumer sets the trends, how did we get to that point and in what ways will this set one up to build generational wealth?

Senior partner and leader of research on Black economic mobility at McKinsey & Company, Shelley Stewart III, hit the stage with Blavity.org’s Tamyra Gordon and highlighted the economic opportunity that comes when there is a focus on the people who make it happen as it pertains to buying power.

Photo Credit: Jemal Countess

“The data is pretty compelling with respect to the opportunity, particularly if you’re a business-to-consumer company. Black consumers spent $900 billion in 2019, they’re expected to spend $1.7 billion by 2030. We are formidable in our economic life and so as an executive using this to say, ‘Okay how are we appealing to this segment of the population,’ and that has a lot to do with representation inside of the company, your philanthropic dollars, your lobbying issues, the vendors you choose to partner with, the folks that are designing your products,” he said. “It’s using the facts to say we should be investing into the leading opportunity.”

With the demographics constantly changing to highlight all of the growth occurring within the industry, now is an important time to pay attention to the power of the Black dollar.

Making A Way For Us To Thrive

During the pandemic, many corporations were able to take advantage of policies implemented by the government to ensure that business owners were able to sustain themselves. However, oftentimes the businesses that come first aren’t the ones that come from people who look like us.

“We wanted to make sure that when PPP came up and these other programs came up that it wasn’t the large banks, it wasn’t the Wells Fargos and Bank of Americas of the world that got all of their concierge clients taken care of first so there was nothing else left for these next generations,” said Senior Consultant, SVP: Diverse Segments, Representation, and Inclusion at Wells Fargo, Erica Miles, while speaking with Kenyan McDuffie and Pierre Whatley in a conversation moderated by Nasir Qadree. “Pierre and I were up at 2 a.m. making sure that there was something left for our businesses that when they went to these lenders, whether it be a CDFI or a minority bank or what have you — or even at Wells Fargo, wherever that may be, that there was something left for us as we made our way.”

AfroTech Executive LA

Next up? AfroTech Executive LA.

On Sept. 22, 2022, join us for a day of dynamic programming as we discuss the changing landscape and future of sports leadership, consumer media consumption, and the gaming industry.

Click here for early-bird tickets.