By Mr. Free Spirit (Posted June 12, 2017)
Did you know? The fastest-growing group of entrepreneurs in America are African/American Women.
The number of businesses owned by African American women grew 322% since 1997, making black females the fastest growing group of entrepreneurs in the U.S.
Overall, the number of women-owned businesses grew by 74% between 1997 and 2015—a rate that’s 1.5 times the national average, according to the recently published “2015 State of Women-Owned Businesses Report” commissioned by American Express Open. Women now own 30% of all businesses in the U.S., accounting for some 9.4 million firms. And African American women control 14% of these companies, or an estimated 1.3 million businesses. That figure is larger than the total number of firms owned by all minority women in 1997, the report found.
“The only bright spot in recent years with respect to privately-held company job growth has been among women-owned firms,” according to the report. These businesses have added an estimated 340,000 jobs to the economy since 2007, while employment at companies owned by men (or with equally shared ownership) has declined.
None of this surprises Margot Dorfman, CEO of the U.S. Women’s Chamber of Commerce. Her organization has seen an uptick in membership from black women entrepreneurs.
“We attribute the growth in women-owned firms to the lack of fair pay, fair promotion, and family-friendly policies found in corporate America,” she said. “Women of color, when you look at the statistics, are impacted more significantly by all of the negative factors that women face. It’s not surprising that they have chosen to invest in themselves.”
Nobody can predict your outcome but you!
Everybody was an Entrepreneur at some point during life, remember when you cut grass, washed cars or ran to the store for someone. You considered it an errand however you earned money for that errand.
A Real Entrepreneurial Story
Let’s zero in on a company I know very well, I will give you the entire history of this company. It’s called Dante Productions. Dante Productions was started in the 1980’s based on a group of men in Philadelphia wanting to go skiing. They went to upstate New York and it was recognized after some hours on the slopes you return at the lodge and there was nothing to do but drink and talk smack. That was the beginning of a person saying it would be nice to have some entertainment. One of the members, Mr. Chauncey Dunham said let’s do this again and I will get some entertainment to travel with us. That was an entrepreneurial move.
Chauncey Dunham engaged a troubled young man who was in high school with the permission of his family to travel on the next trip to spin records. However, the young man did not have turntables or records. This group of me chipped in and made the purchase of the necessary equipment and off they went again to go skiing. This caught on so fast that the number of buses increased from one bus to many buses of men and women. Again, this was the beginning of the expansion of an Entrepreneurial move. Chauncey moved from Philadelphia to the Washington D.C. area and continued the trend. It grew so fast that it became an effort that required a team to handle the flow. Chauncey got others involved, Mr. Richard (Dicky) Jacobs became Chauncey’s business partner and the number of buses continue to increase. Fast Forward, this effort quickly moved into a winter and summer event. Skiing in the winter and the addition of Fashion Productions during the summer, Pool Side relating to a musical event. The events were pool side near Valley Forge (Music Fair) Pa when Diana Ross, Gladys Knight and the likes were preforming. Chauncey met a young designer (Mr. Schbert Baber) that was a magical connection. The following continue to grow, now not only was it a show the logistics became a challenge, buses, hotel rooms and shows.
Family life came into play and Chauncey decided to slow it down. A real entrepreneur does not have time to sleep and the family gets neglected. Therefore, the company went dormant for some years. However, some ladies (Ladies of Style) renewed the spark and Dante Productions came back to life. Dante has developed a team which includes a graphic artist, a management company, a printer, and a master of video to revive the efforts in a new area. If you check the background on LinkedIn you will notice Chauncey has moved from the position of President to Vice President. This was a legacy move to allow a family members to carry the torch. The Bookends are now forming. This entrepreneurial story continues so stay tuned.
Mr. Free Spirit out!
The difference between winning and losing is most often not quitting.