Ice Cube is leading the forefront of change by joining forces with the National Football League (NFL).
Partnership Aims To Shift Dollars To More Black-Owned Businesses
According to a press release, the league is partnering with Contract with Black America Institute (CWBA) — an economic inclusion-focused initiative created by Ice Cube — to support Black-owned businesses and increase economic equity within Black communities. The shared commitment will tackle the wealth gap by bolstering league-wide opportunities in the financial, tech, and production sectors. In addition, the initiative will focus on increasing spending with Black-owned businesses nationally.
“Our partnership with CWBA is another reminder that partnering with intentional organizations is critical to everything we do at the League,” said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, according to a press release. “Black businesses play a major role in our country’s economic prosperity. We understand these businesses have not always had the opportunity for exponential growth, so we are pleased to have partners like Ice Cube and his organization, CWBA, in a continued, collective push toward greater economic inclusion.”
Commitment Is A Continuation Of 2020 Efforts
The commitment is a byproduct of efforts that took root back in 2020 with Ice Cube, his business partner and entertainment lawyer Jeff Kwatinetz, and advisors Ja’Ron Smith and Chris Pilkerton.
The NFL has spent and allocated $125 million with Black-owned businesses including Ariel Investments, CityFirst/Broadway Bank, Cover Communications, and Fearless Technology within the last year.
“For more than a year, the CWBA Institute has been working closely with the NFL on identifying resources to build stronger, more substantive economic partnerships with the Black community,” said Ice Cube, according to a press release. “Our team at CWBA, including my longtime business partner and entertainment lawyer Jeff Kwatinetz, and advisors Ja’Ron Smith and Chris Pilkerton, are focused on building corporate partnerships with measurable economic growth outcomes for Black communities across the country. We believe this is a giant step in the right direction.”
Ice Cube Hopes Nike And Major Leagues Will Join Initiative
The initiative is a step in the right direction, and for Ice Cube, this is only the beginning. ESPN reports Ice Cube hopes to plant similar seeds throughout other major leagues.
“I’m glad the NFL stepped up,” Ice Cube said, according to ESPN. “They’re the biggest and most powerful and most influential to other Fortune 500 companies. So we want to get them to lead the charge. They’ve already allocated and spent up to $125 million. So we want that to turn into $500 million, maybe a billion and then move on to other leagues and hopefully other companies like Nike and the big boys and tell them to try to adopt the same thing.”