NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Almost 30 percent of American businesses are minority-owned, employing 7.2 million Americans and generating over $1 trillion a year in revenue; when these minority-owned businesses achieve scale, jobs and income are created in communities that have the greatest need. BET (a subsidiary of ViacomCBS Inc., NASDAQ: VIACA, VIAC), the nation’s leading provider of quality content for African American audiences, and Facebook Elevate, an accelerator for Black and Latinx & Hispanic small businesses, creators, nonprofits, students and job seekers, are partnering to debut #GenBlack is Now: a digital series of fireside chats that pair a new generation of young, Black entrepreneurs making waves and writing their own stories, with the current generation of notable Black-owned business leaders. The series will premiere on BET’s Facebook page on February 12, with new episodes releasing every Friday throughout Black History Month.
“At BET, we recognize the vital role that Black-owned businesses play, not just in the Black community, but in the overall health of the American economy,” said Amy Barnett, SVP and General Manager of BET Digital. “BET shares a commitment with Facebook to use our creative resources, enormous digital platforms and significant reach to help Black business leaders share wisdom in order to create opportunities and equity for our communities. We’re beyond excited to be co-hosting #GenBlack is Now with Facebook Elevate.”
Episode one of the series pairs Gabby Goodwin, the 14-year-old founder of GaBBY Bows, and Carol’s Daughter founder Lisa Price, to discuss their respective beauty brand entrepreneurial journeys, the importance of mentorship and the unexpected opportunities that rejection can yield. What started off as a simple idea inspired by their mothers–for both Goodwin and Price–spawned major business deals with big-box retailers that put their respective product offerings on store shelves across the nation. The two business owners will share with audiences the sagacity that comes from Price’s decades-long career in Black hair care, and the particular brand of savvy that Gen Z business owners–like Goodwin–bring to the table.
The next episode in the series features Tia Adeola, an American-Nigerian fashion designer and Kheris Rogers, founder of the Flexin’ In My Complexion clothing line, who discuss fashion entrepreneurship. The third episode airing later this month will feature Ian Michael Brock, teenage tech wizkid and founder of Dream Hustle Code, a nonprofit with a mission to bring computer science education to underrepresented kids in tech, with Leslie Miley, the first and former CTO of the Obama Foundation, discussing tech entrepreneurship.
Facebook Elevate is a community and learning platform created to accelerate the growth of businesses of color and celebrate creators who break barriers and turn dreams into realities. Facebook Elevate’s theme this year for Black History Month is Generation Black, the acknowledgment that each generation builds upon the momentum and inspiration of the past to continue paving the way for those to come. #GenBlack is Now is a modern realization of the African tradition where stories are passed down orally from one generation to another, making it possible for a society to transfer knowledge across generations. The #GenBlack is Now fireside chat series for Black History Month reprises these traditions to create a pathway for veteran Black business owners to mentor the next generation of young Black business leaders of the future.
Be sure to check out episode one of the #GenBlack is Now fireside chat series premiering on Friday, February 12th at 11am PST on https://www.facebook.com/BET/ and check back every Friday throughout Black History Month for more episodes.
BET, a subsidiary of ViacomCBS Inc. (NASDAQ: VIACA, VIAC), is the nation’s leading provider of quality entertainment, music, news and public affairs television programming for the African-American audience. The primary BET channel is in 125 million households and can be seen in the United States, Canada, the Caribbean, the United Kingdom, sub-Saharan Africa and France. BET is the dominant African-American consumer brand with a diverse group of business extensions including BET.com, a leading Internet destination for Black entertainment, music, culture, and news; BET HER, a 24-hour entertainment network targeting the African-American Woman; BET Music Networks – BET Jams, BET Soul and BET Gospel; BET Home Entertainment; BET Live, BET’s growing festival business; BET Mobile, which provides ringtones, games and video content for wireless devices; and BET International, which operates BET around the globe.