The City of Chicago Department of Business Affairs & Consumer Protection (BACP) Offers FREE Business Workshops
Scammers try to contact you in many ways. They call, email, put ads online, send messages on social media and more. If you own a small business, they’re trying to contact you too. Lately we’ve been hearing about scams through Facebook messages directed to small business owners.
People have reported receiving messages on Facebook telling them that they’re eligible for ― or that they’ve won ― a business grant. If you get a message like this, do not respond. This is a scam. The government won’t contact you on social media to offer you money.
Some people responded to the messages because they thought they were from a “friend.” Know this: scammers can spoof social media messages to make them look like they’re coming from a friend. Some fake messages directed people to send a text to “confirm” their “business grant.” Don’t do it. The scammer is only trying to get your cell phone number to keep trying to get your money.
Before you respond to a message on social media about a small business grant, stop and consider:
New advertising media company gives Black Newspapers their own vehicle to make money online with ads that look better… do more… and cost less for community businesses.
Nationwide (BlackNews.com) – Launched in February, AdModX (www.admodx.com) can be an x-factor for Black Newspapers. It lets them sell and show ads unlike any they’ve sold before splashy little info-clips available on Black News sites and shared across social media. Black Newspapers co-opt AdModX to generate more revenue online.
“AdModX was built with three objectives,” explained President and CEO Roderick Harris, “create cutting-edge solutions exclusively for Black Newspapers, develop a model that actually makes the papers money, and keep out-of-pocket costs for the papers at $0.” Put simply, “Black Newspapers can offer their own unique brand of advertising without the worry of incurring any costs.”
AdModX benefits both Black Newspapers and the businesses in their community. Black Newspapers get a versatile advertising gateway where the community comes to see, share, and buy ads previously unavailable. Meanwhile, community businesses enjoy advertising that’s just better. Ads look better, incorporating attention-grabbing action and movement; they perform better, maximizing reach and exposure via social media sharing; and they sell better, costing less than conventional ads but with way more functional value. The ads are all about driving online traffic… to community business sites through built-in links, and to hosting Black News sites through their clickable logo on every ad they sell.
Unlike most other online ads, AdModX ads are not sold on CPM (cost per thousand) or CPC (cost per click) based rates. Instead, community businesses buy ads for a flat fee through the setup AdModX provides Black Newspapers. The actual ad buy is transacted through AdModX’s e-commerce provider. A flat fee works better for all involved; community businesses know exactly how much they’ll pay for ads, and papers can better project potential gains.
Black Newspapers get set up, free of charge, with their own Ad Display Page and Ad Buy Page. Papers connect both pages to their site with a simple link. Once connected, papers pay a monthly fee, but only during months they sell ads. That way, there’s no out-of-pocket cost since a portion of just one ad sell covers the month’s entire fee. Buying ads takes only a few minutes without any special knowledge or skills whatsoever. Besides, AdModX walks community businesses through the whole transaction.
Ads run for 30 days, starting the 1st of each month, providing exposure for three specific ad-buyer profiles; 1) people promoting themselves and their business, 2) those promoting a house thats for sale, and 3) anyone promoting an upcoming event. All of them exploit the inherent ease ads can be shared across social media for maximum exposure; far beyond the Black News sites they start off on.
Harris added: “In our community, Black Newspapers have a pivotal voice in bringing truth to power… and we must embrace a shared responsibility in making sure “that voice” continues being heard.”
AdModX envisions becoming a part of every major Black Newspaper by the end of this year. Once papers understand that cost-free is real, and community businesses see that ads can do so much more for less; demand for AdModX will grow and Black News will have its x-factor.
Based in Columbus, OH, AdModX is a forward-looking advertising media company for Black Newspapers; started by Roderick Harris, a 20+ year newspaper professional and internet entrepreneur. The company offers a new brand of advertising that changes the game for Black Newspapers. For more details, visit www.admodx.com
Photo Caption: Roderick Harris, President and CEO of AdModX
The workshop will be held at the Paul Quinn College, located at 3837 Simpson Stuart Road, in Dallas, Texas. Registration opens at 9:30am and the panel discussions start at 10:00am. Credit counseling and business speed networking will also be available until 2:00pm. Lunch will be provided for attendees.
The Atlanta workshop is the first in a series of 10 workshops led by the USBC CEDC which provides on-going training and development from top lending and credit experts in the field. Participants will learn how to effectively fund and expand their entrepreneurial ventures, and become a part of a network of the nation’s most established entrepreneurs. Presenters include representatives from the National Foundation of Credit Counseling, BB&T, People Fund, Lift Fund, the Minority Business Development Agency, and SCORE.
“There are 2.6 million black owned businesses and their number one concern is access to capital,” said Ron Busby, Sr., President and CEO of the U.S. Black Chambers, Inc. “Since 2009, the U.S. Black Chambers, Inc. has led the way to ensure that our small businesses are in the best position possible to succeed. Through the Capital Pathways program, we are helping Atlanta’s small businesses explore alternative funding options and receive one-on-one credit counseling, which means a stronger economy and more productive communities.”
The Capital Pathways program is targeted towards diverse business owners who have been in business for at least one year, and have generated at least $100,000 in revenue. The program infuses local partnerships and outreach, highlights home-grown founders and CEOs, and promotes inter-generational connections for collective economic growth and empowerment.
About Capital Pathways:
The Capital Pathways program is a series of 10 workshops across the nation funded by the U.S. Department of Commerce Minority Business Development Agency’s Broad Agency Announcement, and managed by the U.S. Black Chambers, Inc. Community Economic Development Corporation. The USBC CEDC designs, develops and delivers financial education and business improvement programs to underserved communities nationwide. For more information on the Capital Pathways program, please visit www.capitalpathways.com.
The 10-city tour features a business competition offering $15,000 in start-up capital
CHICAGO, IL (BlackNews.com) — Unleash Launch 2017 kicks-off in Chicago with a powerful two-day conference to help Black professionals unleash their dreams and launch their businesses. The Lead Well Institute, PICO National Network, and the Solomon Group joined forces to create Unleash Launch; a 10-city tour to help build 1,000 businesses that will generate an estimated $5 million in new revenue in the cities of Chicago, Detroit, Cleveland and Memphis with more cities to be announced.
The 2-day conference commences on March 21 23, 2017, at the beautiful 19 East Event Gallery. Attendees will have access to world-class speakers, thought leaders and investors who represent a variety of professional sectors from retail to franchising, social enterprises and tech. Conference attendees will enjoy panel discussions, peer-to-peer training, and pragmatic real world insights designed to jumpstart and sustain their ventures. Unleash Launch will also feature, Entre-SLAM, a business story-telling competition where 10 cutting-edge tech and social companies will compete for up to $15,000 in start-up capital in each city.
Our goal is to Unleash the talent in 1,000 individuals who are yearning for a positive change in their lives and to Launch the dreams of 1,000 entrepreneurs who are seeking to impact culture through enterprise, said Robert Johnson, Managing Partner of the Solomon Group. For more information on Unleash Launch 2017 and the Entre-SLAM business competition, please visit www.unleash2017.com.
About the Solomon Group
The Solomon Group, LLC, provides business management, consulting, coaching and strategy development to emerging and existing companies. We also assist companies grow through franchising or help existing franchisors grow or operate more profitably in new or underserved markets. For more information, visit www.solomongroupint.com.
About the LEADWell Institute
The LEADWell Institute exists to unleash the talent within individuals and organizations and to empower others to positively transform society. The purpose of Lead Well Institute is to teach individuals and leaders to not only lead, but to lead well. Leading is an action, and leadership must be governed by values that seek a positive impact. For more information, visit www.leadwellinstitute.com.
About the PICO National Network
PICO is a national network of faith-based community organizations working to create innovative solutions to problems facing urban, suburban and rural communities. PICO helps ordinary people in public life; build a strong legacy of leadership in thousands of local communities across America. For more information, visit www.piconetwork.org.
Photo: Robert Johnson, Managing Partner, The Solomon Group
By Hazel Trice Edney
Ron Busby, U. S. Black Chambers Inc.; Michael Grant, National Bankers Association; Alden McDonald Jr., Liberty Bank
(TriceEdneyWire.com) – It is the number one reason that Black-owned businesses fail: Simply put – not enough money and not enough places to get it.
That’s why as America commemorates Black History Month, the US Black Chamber Inc. (USBC), an association of more than 122 Black chambers and 265,000 business owners, is escalating publicity on its partnership with historic, Black-owned Liberty Bank. Both entities are determined to break economic barriers that have historically oppressed Black people.
“Our history is full of trailblazers and pioneers that fought to build our community from the ground up. We owe it to them to sustain our community,” says Ron Busby, USBC president/CEO.
“The top three concerns facing Black entrepreneurs are access to capital, access to capital, and access to capital,” Busby says. “As the voice of Black business owners, our focus during Black History Month is to highlight the importance of economic sustainability in the Black community and the dire lack of funding facing Black businesses.”
The USBC has launched what it calls a “buy-Black, bank-Black initiative” as a solution to spur economic growth in the Black community.
“Bank-Black is the single most powerful economic movement currently taking place in Black America,” Busby says. “Now is the time to utilize our Black banks as more than a place to hold our money, but as a resource for securing capital.”
As a part of this initiative, a USBC Bank-Black Credit Card is being offered in partnership with New Orleans-based Liberty Bank, a historic institution and one of the leading banks of the National Bankers Association (NBA).
“Through our relationship with Liberty Bank, we can now provide access of up to $10,000 with an unsecured line of credit at an annual percentage rate of 9.96 percent and with a credit score as low as 570. We think this is game-changing in that it now provides the needed resources for African-Americans to be able to move our communities to sustainability,” Busby says.
Black businesses have long suffered oppressive redlining by major national banks. Even the Small Business Administration has barely reached 3 percent in its loans to Black-owned businesses. The U.S. Census Bureau reported in 2014 that more than half of Black business owners do not apply for business loans when they need it because of fear of being turned down. According to a report by NewsOne Now, their “fear is justified” as “only 47 percent of Black business owners get the full amount they requested versus 76 percent of Whites.”
The Wall Street Journal reported last year that national banks tilting toward major mortgages “means fewer loans for Blacks, Hispanics.” This leaves Black-owned community banks to do what they have historically done – serve the underserved.
Despite the proven historic wrongs of government and corporate discrimination, NBA President Michael Grant says Black business owners must now find ways to rescue themselves.
“When it comes to the burden of proof of who is ultimately responsible for the economic survival of the Black community in America, I’m arguing that the burden of proof has shifted to the Black community itself,” Grant says. “It does not in any way remove the responsibility of government to be fair. It doesn’t remove the responsibility of corporate America to be fair and to treat Black consumers and their businesses with equity. But the burden of proof of who is ultimately going to save the Black community, I am arguing that this must be the Black community.”
Grant continues, “Even if it means our advocacy, supporting our own businesses, going to our leadership asking, ‘What are your plans for the economic survival of Black people in this country?’ the burden of proof has shifted to us. And this credit card, in no small way, says that we are accepting the burden of proof. We’re saying, ‘Okay, if our businesses are having a difficult time in majority banks getting access to credit, what can the Black banks do about it? How can we accept that burden? How can we step up and revive access to credit?’ That’s what this has done.”
Despite negative stereotypes, Grant points to the education and professionalism of African-Americans in business and in banking as what enables them to create their own economic strategies for survival.
For example, Liberty Bank President Alden J. McDonald, Jr., is the longest tenured African-American financial executive in the country. His nearly 45 years of experience in the banking industry was first established with his presidency of Liberty, which started with the bank’s founding in 1972. The bank’s website credits his “strategic vision and hard work” for the success of the bank. Assets have grown from $2 million in 1972 to more than $600 million currently.
“Our relationship and our partnership with the US Black Chamber is a partnership that will make certain that available credit is based on a level playing field,” says McDonald. “And one of the reasons why we feel the relationship with Liberty Bank is important is because Liberty Bank is very sensitive to the credit challenges of the community. And therefore, our underwriting standards are taken into consideration for the small business person.”
Grant stressed that Black-owned banks can strengthen the economy of the Black community while operating within a stringent regulatory environment.
“Our banks, like any bank, have to adhere to the regulators. We can’t get around that. What we can do is when you come to our banks, we can talk with you, we can take a little extra time with you. We can tell you where the flaws are in your business plan, we can tell you that if you don’t qualify for credit, then here are the things that you can do so that you can become credit worthy. But, the bottom line is that the burden of proof has shifted to the Black community and its leaders and its organizations,” he said.
Ultimately, money in Black-owned banks is a win for everyone, Busby concludes.
“We want African-Americans to have money in Black banks because we feel that Black banks historically provided the resources in Black communities. But, we’re taking it a step further, understanding that banks truly make the largest profits by providing loans and receiving fees,” he says.
“And so we feel like this is a win, win, win. It’s a win for the Black bank, which has additional capital to lend. It’s a win for the individuals because they can now get capital at an affordable rate. And it’s a win for the community because the banks can now make the loans that homeowners and business owners need. The USBC takes great pride in commemorating Black History Month with a tribute that honors Black history and anticipates an even greater Black future.”
SPRINGFIELD, IL – As the new Vice-Chair of the House Business Incentives for Local Communities Committee, state Rep. Sonya Harper, D-Chicago, will advocate for job creating policies, support environmentally friendly legislation and fight for real reforms to Illinois’s criminal justice system.
“I am honored to be sitting on the House Business Incentives for Local Communities Committee and fighting for the interests that are important to my constituents, like stable, middle-class jobs, a hike in the minimum wage and tax relief,” said Harper. “I will also pursue tax relief for medium and small sized business, so that they can compete with large corporations. I support policies that expand access and opportunity to those people that need the most assistance.”
As a member of the Appropriations: General Services Committee, Harper will analyze state expenditures and look for ways to prioritize spending. Harper is also a member House Environment and the House Agriculture and Conservation committees, which will oversee proposals that affect environmental policy in Illinois. She will work on legislation that aims to support the further development of urban agriculture to ensure that city residents have access to adequate farmers’ markets, grocery stores and healthy food suppliers.
“I will also be sitting on the House Elementary and Secondary Education: School Curriculum and Restorative Justice Committees,” added Harper. “I have seen our schools close and continued unfair and biased treatment towards the students of my district. I still see unfair treatment towards people who have paid their debt to society and not receive the respect they’ve earned. And I’ve seen access to quality food diminish which has led to high rates of preventable diet related diseases among certain populations in my district and throughout the state. As a voice for students, those hurt by our justice system and people who deserve to live in green and healthy communities, I’ll fight every day to establish better policies and reforms that adequately address these issues.”
Baltimore, MD (BlackNews.com) — African American entrepreneurs and business owners are invited to join Anary Bellamy, Your Simple Mommie Marketer and Leroy Mckenzie Jr., the Authorpreneur Consultant for a one-day workshop that is going to move their business to the next level.
This results-driven workshop teach attendees:
* How to build a solid business foundation
* How to establish a 12 month marketing plan
* How to publish a book in 6 months
* How to identify your target market
* How to create a sales funnel
* How to implement the elements of customer service… and much more!
This workshop will take place on Saturday, January 28, 2017 from 9am to 4pm at the Maryland Non-Profits Building located at 1500 Union Ave. Baltimore, Maryland 21211. This workshop experience will offer entrepreneurs, aspiring entrepreneurs, authors and aspiring Authors the opportunity to begin 2017 by putting in place their marketing plan and branding strategy to become UNSTOPPABLE as well as connect with others who are interested in taking their businesses to the next level or starting their entrepreneur journey.
Attendees will have the opportunity to put together their marketing and branding plans that will allow them to immediately implement them into their business and gain other information, knowledge and resources that will assist them to take their brand to another level.
Co-sponsors of this event include: Life Giving Word Ministries and BlackPR.com
For more details and updates about the workshop, visit www.beunstoppable.info or contact Leroy Mckenzie Jr. at 443-762-2324 or firstname.lastname@example.org; or contact Anary Bellamy at 704-500-8691 or email@example.com
Photo Captions: Workshop facilitators Leroy Mckenzie Jr. (left) and Anary Bellamy (right)
By Randy Hughes
Founder of Counting Pennies
Nationwide (BlackNews.com) – Sadly, many African Americans don’t think about taxes until the days and weeks leading up to April 15. However, there are many things you can do now to help our results then be more appealing.
In addition to tax adjustments, some basic financial planning can go a long way in setting the stage for you (and your money) as you enter the new year.
Randy Hughes is the founder of Counting Pennies, a nationwide tax and accounting firm that specializes in tax preparation, bookkeeping and debt management. Contact him at (800) 234-1449 or firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.cpennies.com.
Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher