African-American businesses have enjoyed strong growth during the 21st century. The United States Black Chamber of Commerce found that Black-owned businesses grew exponentially in this century. The year 2018 is already an excellent year for entrepreneurs. The United States has almost 2.6 million Black-owned commercial organizations.
Kezia Williams founded The Black upStart, an organization to train Black entrepreneurs. She is now the chief of a nation-wide program to tender the next wave of Black innovators and entrepreneurs for United Negro College Fund. As per Williams, racism steals African-American employees of equal and fair-earned income simply due to their skin color. It follows that for blacks, entrepreneurship is a given. They must not hunt for jobs which limit economic mobility. Being employed in such an environment restricts the earning potential. This has been corroborated by research. It is observed that disparity between whites and African Americans noticeably decrease by more than half when business owner wealth gets compared by 'race'.
Pushing African-American businesses
A number of conferences have been lined up in 2018 to particularly target Black entrepreneurs. The Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Summit's 23rd edition will happen in Charlotte, North Carolina. The conference will continue for three days. It will gather about 1,000 of America's leading corporations, entrepreneurs, and business funding services. Black Tech Week will happen in multiple cities in the summer. This event, which began in 2014, will happen in Charlotte and Washington DC. It will then move to Cincinnati, Atlanta, Kansas City, and Detroit. The aim of this Black Tech Week is partnering with the community, founders, and corporations to form an excellent experience for African-American entrepreneurs and investors. Silicon Valley similarly will host the yearly AfroTech Conference during the fall season. It is an event where the employees and founders of a few of the quickest growing startups in the technology sphere present strategies which they utilized to grow their respective businesses and products.
The AfroTech Conference is in its third iteration. Among the luminaries who spoke in 2017, Rodney Williams, the co-founder and CEO of LISNR and Diishan Imira, the founder and CEO of Mayvenn stands out. The 2018 conference is anticipated to be the largest one in its history. A number of incubators especially oriented towards Black entrepreneurship have come up all over the United States. Plans are afoot for Atlanta's Russell Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Herman J. Russell was the founder of America's biggest African -American owned construction firm.