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Can A New Rule Change By The Small Business Administration Give Formerly Incarcerated Citizens A Chance At Entrepreneurship?

Vice President Kamala Harris has unveiled significant changes to entrepreneurship pathways for formerly incarcerated individuals.

Michelle Burk

Jan 31, 2024

Where To Find Startup Grants For Your Business In 2024

Those seeking funding for their small business have the debt-free option of applying for startup business grants or small business grants. These grants are typically awarded by government entities, private organizations or corporations and, unlike loans , are not expected to be paid back. There are incentives for these companies and organizations to award these grants, as the new businesses could create economic growth or support a certain cause/research topic (like social or environmental) that one of these entities is interested in. These grants are highly competitive and have very specific requirements that must be met before they are awarded. Most likely, applicants will need to prepare by verifying the eligibility criteria, funding amount, application deadlines and any restrictions of a grant that their business aligns with. Also, ensuring the applicant’s business is specific enough to the grant’s requirements is very important . Doing so ensures the applicant has a better...

Leah Jones

Jan 19, 2024

No Idea? Here Are 10 Tech Business Ideas To Launch This Year

Some people know the moment they enter the workforce that, they are meant to be their own boss. Others may have known from the beginning but are waiting for the right idea to ignite a fire within them. However, waiting too long can just as easily stifle that fire. Aspiring entrepreneurs often find themselves throwing up their hands in defeat saying, “I want to start a business but have no ideas.” Most successful entrepreneurs share that it is not always about having an original idea that gets one started in business, nor does that original idea automatically equate to success. For many, it was taking an existing idea and iterating upon it; making it more efficient and polishing it. In other words, it was about starting rather than waiting for just the right moment with just the right idea. With this in mind, here are ten tech business ideas for those who want to start a business but have no ideas. Each one of them capitalizes upon existing tech that is popular and becoming more and...

Leah Jones

Jan 11, 2024

How To Scale Your Small Business By Making Your 9-5 A 'Silent Investor'

It may be possible to grow and navigate an industry with greater ease by maintaining a full-time job. This decision has proved favorable for some Black entrepreneurs who often don’t see the same investment dollars as their counterparts. And sometimes, keeping the vision afloat means carrying forward with your financial resources. Ultimately, you can lean on what route will be most beneficial for the longevity of your business. However, we have compiled some tips from Black women small business owners who have scaled their brands and attribute their growth to their 9-5.

Samantha Dorisca

Jul 28, 2023

How A Husband-And-Wife Team Turned EBkicks Into A Successful Company

If you’re a sneakerhead, EBkicks isn’t just a luxury — it’s a requirement. Made of all-natural and biodegradable materials, EBkicks — helmed by the husband-and-wife team of Kenny and Elin Berbick — is safe for all shoe materials. The Las Vegas-based duo has achieved exponential success as a family-centered lifestyle brand. As life and business partners, Elin and Kenny Berbick, pride themselves on being the original sneakerheads. The duo’s passion for sneakers inspired them to put their hard-earned money to develop low-cost top-tier biodegradable sneaker cleaning products. EB and Kenny have even become influencers in their own right with over 180,000 followers on Instagram and over 365,000 followers on TikTok, amassing nearly 5 million likes on the latter platform. What’s more, the solution can keep your expensive shoes lasting a lot longer — and looking a lot better in the process. The product was also recently featured in GQ, when popular sneaker influencers Miguel and Grace...

Startup Kippa Raises $3.2M To Help Africa’s Small Businesses Improve Their Bookkeeping Practices

Sometimes small businesses face the challenge of learning how to develop effective bookkeeping practices. This obstacle could lead to disrupted cash flow and a failure to meet the financial obligations of one’s business. Looking to resolve this issue in Nigeria is the startup Kippa, which markets itself as the country’s simplest accounting software. Founded by Kennedy Ekezie alongside Duke Ekezie and Jephthah Uche in February 2021, the application is designed to help small business owners create a bookkeeping system that will help them “recover debts 3x faster,” TechCrunch reports. According to Kippa, a stand-out feature on its application is customers who have not made payments can not only be tracked, but they will receive an automated reminder message for the business owner to recover debts. In addition, businesses can manage inventory, track daily cash flow and expenses, create invoices and generate receipts. “For us, what we do is we have such a unique opportunity to provide...

Samantha Dorisca

Nov 18, 2021

The United States Best And Worst Cities To Start A Business

A recent study published by NBC News revealed that North Carolina is the best state to start a business in. But which state is the worst? LendingTree provided their research to NBC News, and their studies concluded that three of North Carolina’s top cities — Raleigh, Charlotte, and Durham — offer the best places for small businesses to get started. Raleigh takes the top spot, while Charlotte is at No. 3, and Durham is at No. 4. “54.8% of Raleigh’s population is in their prime working years between ages 25 and 54, ninth-highest among the 100 metros,” reports the study. Austin, TX, meanwhile, takes the No. 2 spot. In fact, according to the study, the South holds five of the 10 top ten spots in the United States to open a small business. Aside from North Carolina, states like Idaho (with Boise, ID, coming in at No. 5) and Tennessee (with Nashville coming in at No. 9) also made the top of the list. But, which states are the worst states to open a new business in? At the top of the list...

Visa To Provide Its Tap To Phone Technology To 50 Black-Owned Small Businesses In D.C.

Visa is piloting its Tap to Phone technology in Washington, D.C., with hopes of aiding in the close of the digital divide for small Black-owned businesses and communities. This is the first time the multinational financial services corporation is bringing its new tech to the U.S. after piloting it in 30 other countries, Visa shared in a press release. Visa is also looking to provide resources and education through Visa Street Teams , an initiative it created to digitally-enable 50 million small businesses. Following this launch in D.C., Visa will be taking its tech to Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, Los Angeles and Miami as part of its small business revitalization initiative. “The way we shop and pay has forever changed. During the pandemic, tapping to pay and contactless checkout became more commonplace – and are now expected,“ Mary Kay Bowman, Visa’s global head of buyer, seller, core and platform products, said in a press release. “With our technology, networking and community...

Michelai Graham

Jun 16, 2021

Float Is Providing Capital To Small & Medium Sized Businesses In Africa

Float, a start-up company with offices in Nigeria and San Francisco, is here to solve the problems that many African companies say they have with cash flow. According to TechCrunch, 85% of African SMBs have zero access to financing, which creates issues in the supply chain. Jesse Ghansah and his co-founder Barima Effah founded Float — originally named Swipe — 18 months ago with the hopes of closing the gaps in the funding. ” Cash flow [is] the number one problem that [businesses] face,” said co-founder and CEO Jesse Ghansah to TechCrunch. “Because you’re waiting for your revenue to come in, they sometimes fall behind in meeting certain expense payments like payroll, inventory, utilities. That’s what really causes a lot of these cash flow issues, and because of that, businesses can’t grow.” For Float, solving cash flow problems involves providing the users with credit when they need it, and working capital when possible. The founders say that this approach to extending credit and...

Vanessa Jean-Baptiste of Massachusetts Opened the First Black Woman-Owned Dispensary on the East Coast

Vanessa Jean-Baptiste opened the first Black woman-owned dispensary on the East Coast this past weekend, WPRI reported. Baptiste welcomed customers to Legal Greens for the first time on Sunday, March 28. The new dispensary is located in Brockton, Massachusetts, and WPRI reported that the historic cannabis store has been in the works for three years. “It means a lot to me because we worked really hard to get to where we are at,” Jean-Baptiste told WPRI. There was a line of people waiting to support Jean-Baptiste and Brockton’s newest local Black-owned business on Sunday before the doors opened at 8 a.m. Jean-Baptiste was born and raised in Brockton and she opened this new dispensary with the hopes of bringing a positive impact to the community.   View this post on Instagram   A post shared by Legal Greens (@legal_greens) “This is the first woman Black-owned business in the legal market on the East Coast which is as exciting as the first stores that opened in November of 2018,” Davide...

Michelai Graham

Mar 30, 2021

TikTok is Offering $100M in Ad Credits to Rebuild the Small Business Community

TikTok has been on the tip of many tongues lately. However, despite threats of takedowns and power shifts, the video-sharing giant is still providing opportunities for businesses to grow. According to Small Business Trends , TikTok launched TikTok For Business , under which the brand committed $100 million in ad credits to small businesses as a part of their Back-to-Business program. The initiative is designed to help boost brand awareness, alleviate marketing costs, and craft engaging creative messaging. Now, for a limited time, small businesses can receive up to $2,300 in ad credit. To be eligible for the ad offer, small and medium-sized businesses must sign up for TikTok For Business and register for a TikTok Ads Manager account. Eligible SMBs can claim a one-time ad credit worth $300, the site says. Any additional spending will be matched up to $2,000 per business. This year, TikTok has become an integral part of many businesses and individual creatives’ marketing plans. In...

Niki McGloster

Sep 30, 2020

Everybody Eats, No Questions Asked at This Donations-Only Black-Owned Restaurant

At Drexell & Honeybee’s in Brewton, Alabama, restaurant owners Freddie and Lisa Thomas-McMillan display classic Southern hospitality. With their business philosophy, “Feed the Need,” they operate on a donation-based system without turning anyone away reports Good News Network . Guests from all walks of life can come in and enjoy southern cuisine served family style. After their meal, tucked in the corner of the mom and pop soul food establishment, is a donation box where guests can leave a donation that fits their needs. These donations go right back into running the restaurant meaning the owners get virtually no profit, says Black Business . In a video by It’s a Southern Thing , Lisa explains that she learned the lesson of giving back to others as a young girl which has carried on into her adult life. “We don’t have any suggested prices, everybody gets treated the same,” she said in the video . “If you go to the box and don’t have one red cent— no one will ever know. And we won’t...

Abriana Walton

Aug 18, 2020

Diddy Launches 'Our Fair Share' to Help Minority Entrepreneurs and Small Businesses

Media mogul and entrepreneur Sean “Diddy” Combs has launched a new platform dedicated to helping minority entrepreneurs and small businesses remain afloat amid the changing economy brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. Launched in partnership with The National Bankers Association, “ Our Fair Share ” was created to simplify the application process for the next round of Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) funding, according to the company’s press release. Combs announced the big news yesterday via Instagram. “COVID-19 is devastating our communities and without access to stimulus funding we risk losing critical businesses that create jobs and help build opportunities and wealth in our communities,” Combs said. “I created Our Fair Share to help entrepreneurs play on an even playing field and give them a chance to survive with the hope to thrive.” The initial round of PPP funding was unfairly distributed to “to those...

Njera Perkins

Apr 24, 2020

Places With the Most At-Risk Businesses During the Coronavirus Pandemic

The coronavirus pandemic has crashed the U.S. economy and brought certain industries to a near standstill —  including retail, entertainment, food and accommodations. Cities that have traditionally relied on these sectors to employ their citizens may be particularly vulnerable. A new LendingTree study ranks the 100 U.S. metro areas with the most retail establishments to see which ones stand to feel the biggest pinch. Researchers found that mid-sized cities are at greatest risk. Six of the top 10 cities are in the Sunbelt. Key findings Myrtle Beach, S.C. ,  has the highest concentration — 35.4% — of local businesses in the retail , entertainment, and food and accommodations sectors (the U.S. Census Bureau groups food services and accommodations as one sector). Salisbury, Md., is in second place . Nearly one-third of all businesses here (32.3%) are in one of the affected industries. Scranton, Pa., comes in third with 28.8% of establishments in vulnerable industries . Larger cities...

Lending Tree

Apr 23, 2020

How AfroTech 2018 Inspired This Founder to Start

When Victor Anyirah arrived at AfroTech 2018, he had no clue a conversation with friends about finding the next move after the conference, would lead to the start of a business. Often, “I hear the phrase ‘finding the next move.’ At that time, I sat in the back of the car with my friends trying to figure out what exactly determined the ‘move,’” said Anyirah. “Was it the most popular event? Was it the event that had the most people? I realized the ‘move’ was the place our community congregates. Some platforms do allow you to find experiences based on your location, mood or musical taste. However, none helped you find experiences based on your community or the communities that matter to you. That was the birth of the” Launched in May 2019, is an event platform curating everything from brunches to art shows and nightlife events for Black millennials. Now, Anyirah along with his co-founder, Tyler Bell and Kara Reeves, the head of the curation, are making plans to...

Kandia Johnson

Feb 21, 2020