Navarrow Wright: What Factors Dictate Minority Entrepreneur Success?

Entrepreneurship is the top route for achieving personal success and financial freedom. New technologies are born right before our eyes, and go on to thrive as profitable businesses. African Americans and other minorities are at the forefront of consumption when concepts like Twitter or Digg achieve prominence–yet we are infrequently at the helm of such enterprises.

Navarrow Wright offered this perspective from the Huffington Post:

“With American unemployment still hovering around 9.7% for the general population, and at 15.8% for African Americans and 12.4% for Hispanics, our greatest hope for economic recovery lies not in a return to traditional trade, manufacturing or corporate jobs, but in our ability to transition to the future, to actively take part in America’s burgeoning digital economy.”

He goes on to say:

“Despite the lower barriers to entry that the Internet provides for new media startups and tech entrepreneurs, the fundamental barriers that stand in the way of entrepreneurship, especially for traditionally marginalized communities still exist – lack of funding and almost no access to capital, insufficient understanding of business development and partnership opportunities, and an underwhelming commitment from established companies to “give back” and lend a helping hand for future generations of entrepreneurs.”

Read the entire post here.

Hustletown readers: Are African Americans in your sphere taking advantage of digital opportunities in entrepreneurship? Let us know your experiences!

2 Responses to Navarrow Wright: What Factors Dictate Minority Entrepreneur Success?

  1. Katrina Harrell

    May 14, 2010 at 3:23 pm

    I am African American and am developing a Saas (Software as a Service) concept for my bookkeeping practice which is tri-fold to include a network that offers business coaching and consulting to minority businesses. Particularly b/c I want to make the concept of cloud computing accessible, affordable and easy r minority businesses and continue on my mission to provide affordable accessible bookkeeping and accounting services to this same group. A few minutes ago I did a google search trying to see if I can find a tech company who specilizes in educating african americans on digital media and computers and this article came up. Thus this is EXACTLY the issue I am trying to address as a finance professional and entreprenuer and wanted to know if I’m on the mark or far from it, seems I’m right on the mark.

    to answer the question, African Americans (AA) are NOT taking advantage of digital opportuniies in entreprenuership (myself not included) because we simply do not know what is out there. All of my clients are AA small businesses and each one of them are extremly smart, talented and visionaries however they do everything the “old school way” and when I attempt to introduce them to a product such as SmartVault to keep up with documents or Expensify to make tracking and paying expneses easy I get alot of resistance. The idea of digial businesses never enters their minds. I think it’s because of lack of education on the idea and of course the fact alot (if not all) of the bigger digial companies I’ve been researching and working with are owned operated and funded by Caucasion men (even women are underrepresented in this field). Thus how can AA expect these companies to acknowledge the tremendous opportunity in our entrepreneuralship community and ensure we are able to take avantage of this great new trend?

    My solution? start with me, my knowledge in small businss bookkeeping and finance and find a creative, innovative way to bring digital business management right to them. 1 way is by linking with a minority owned tech company who specialized in teaching techonology to minorities and 2. work tirelessly in developing my company and product. I have learned very quickly in this journey though that I have to go to the “big dogs” with two dissadvantages going for me already: 1. I’m Black and 2. I’m a woman. However another thing I am finding is that these same companies, though they don’t reach out to AA, they are starting to open up contests and competitions to find new talent so we must position ourselves to know where these opportunities are and apply!!

  2. Iceman Baldy

    May 24, 2010 at 7:26 pm

    Thanks for the outstanding and thoughtful comment. So many people who leave comments for us do so only to increase their page ranking by linking from our site. You’ve answered a question raised by the original post while also providing a fresh perspective and giving our readers a reason to consider doing business with you. Continued success!

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