Black-Owned Businesses Making an Impact in the Twin Cities
Supporting small, independently-owned businesses has a huge impact on the local economy. In addition to providing jobs, a small business might sponsor your kids’ sports teams, contribute to a scholarship or local charity, and use local vendors. All of these things funnel capital back into the community.
Did you know that consciously supporting black-owned businesses can have an even bigger social and economical impact? According to the Small Business Administration, Black-owned businesses make up only about 9.5 percent of all businesses in America and employ just 1.7 percent of America’s workforce. Even more concerning, black-owned businesses on average see only half the return that white-owned businesses do.
Here are a few black-owned businesses that are also striving to make a social impact in the Twin Cities area:
Minnesota Black Chamber of Commerce: The Minnesota Black Chamber of Commerce’s mission is to provide black-owned businesses with equitable opportunities for growth through access to education, advocacy, and economic development.
Soul Bowl: Located in Minneapolis, Soul Bowl is owned and operated by Brittney and Gerard Klass. According to the website: “Soul Bowl is soul food reimagined for the urban millennial by Chef Gerard Klass. By using unique flavors and modern techniques, he presents the soul food from his childhood in a flavorful, healthy, and eye-catching way.”
Body Love Products: Sabrina Young started Body Love Products in 2016. Located on Currell Blvd. in St. Paul, this woman and black-owned business offers handmade, natural beauty and wellness solutions.
Revival Training: Owned by Lucienne “Luci” Olson, Revival Training is all about helping individuals achieve maximum wellness through balancing mind, body, and soul.
Cheesecake Funk: Started in 2003 by Vanessa Drews, Cheesecake Funk offers a mouthwatering variety of gourmet, made-from-scratch cheesecakes. In 2019, Vanessa stepped away from her former job as a paralegal to focus on her business full-time, and even auditioned for ABC’s popular show Shark Tank.
Afro Deli & Grill: According to the website: “Afro Deli is a social venture that attempts to weave together business with community and culture.” They serve a fusion of African, Mediterranean, and American food. In addition to delicious food, they donate a portion of their proceeds to local organizations that support the community.
Finding even more black-owned businesses that you can support is easier than ever. Google recently added a feature where a business can identify as black-owned online. Many black-owned businesses are also actively promoting social change within their communities. Supporting a black-owned business is a simple, enjoyable way to make a difference!