Amazon Partnership With Black Owned Businesses | SMH Branding
Research shows that Black-owned businesses have been disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and economic downturn. Black entrepreneurs have less access to capital, mentorship, and growth opportunities and they are also significantly underrepresented in retail.
Born from the collaboration of Amazon's Black Employee Network and a coalition of strategic partners, the Black Business Accelerator (BBA) wants to build equity and sustainable growth for Black-owned businesses. Specifically, the initiative targets barriers to access such as access to capital, mentorship, and growth opportunities.
The BBA will provide financial support, business education and mentorship, and marketing and promotion of their brands and products as third-party sellers on Amazon.com.
The idea for BBA came from an Amazon employee who is a member of Amazon's Black Employee Network. Working with the sellers and seeing the success they were having, she could not help but think about her parents, who had started a number of businesses over the years. She started to think of how she could harness the store's power to help Black businesses. She wrote a document and started to socialize it internally and really gained momentum from there.
Amazon's BBA will invest $150 million over four years, including financial assistance and grants to help Black business owners to kick off their activity. Financial support comes in the form of Amazon credits and services valued at $3,900 that include free product imaging services and advertising credits.