Supporting Greater Daytona Black-Owned Businesses
Several resources bolster Black-owned businesses — and help other companies reach their clientele.
In Daytona Beach, the African American Entrepreneurs Association Inc. works to support new entrepreneurs and help grow existing Black-owned businesses. The organization’s founder and CEO Leslie Giscombe details the importance of diversity among the region’s small-business owners.
Why is diversity and inclusion so important to business success?
Diversity and inclusion is a vital component to any entrepreneurial venture or entrepreneurial landscape because companies are finding out that, unless you have different perspectives, you won’t be able to reach an increasingly diverse customer base. The majority of Americans aged 18 and younger are minorities, so if you have a product or service to sell, that’s who your audience is.
How does the African American Entrepreneurship Association help minority entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses?
African Americans are the fastest growing group of small-business owners, but they also have the largest attrition rate. Within 18 months of getting started, most African American businesses close. That was one of the main reasons I started this organization after I finished my MBA. What we do is help support those new businesses by offering them business plan support, marketing plan support, business registration support, financial planning and other strategies. We also help connect them to resources, such as the Small Business Association.
How does having more minority- owned businesses impact the region’s economy and quality of life?
Studies have shown the importance of addressing the underserved communities when it comes to economic development. When you help the small guy in business, you’re actually helping all the businesses in the community. Even the bigger businesses are able to benefit from that.
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