Roundtable: How Can We Create More Billion Dollar Minority-Owned Businesses? Catalyzing Minority Entrepreneurship to Drive Wealth Creation in America’s Inner Cities
(Social Equity and Race)

Thursday, November 8, 2018: 1:45 PM-3:15 PM
8216 - Lobby Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

*Names in bold indicate Presenter

Moderators:  Sekou Kaalund, JPMorgan Chase
Speakers:  Elsie Harper-Anderson, Virginia Commonwealth University, Tim Bates, Wayne State University, Kathleen O'Shea, Initiative for a Competitive Inner City and Michael Verchot, University of Washington

There is growing recognition that building wealth for residents in distressed urban areas requires not only maximizing employment, but supporting the development of entrepreneurs in these neighborhoods—most of whom are people of color—and helping them grow their businesses. Minority-owned businesses play an increasingly important role in the overall health and growth of the U.S. economy.

Yet, little attention has been given to identifying the most effective strategies for supporting entrepreneurs of color. In addition, many programs aimed at supporting entrepreneurs of color in inner cities lack an industry focus and focus on micro-enterprises (versus businesses with the potential for significant growth) creating a self-perpetuating cycle that limits wealth building opportunities in these areas. In cities such as Boston and Seattle, which support many high-growth tech companies in the city overall, this trend may be creating greater wealth inequities.

This session will provide conference attendees with both research and practical perspectives to better understand the barriers and types of interventions that are needed to foster the growth of all minority-owned businesses, including those with high-growth potential in inner cities.

A professor of economics representing a top research university will present his foundational research identifying the unique barriers to growth that minority-owned businesses located in the inner city face. A particular focus of this discussion will be on the gap in access to financing that exists for entrepreneurs of color, and the implications of this gap in limiting the ability of minority-owned businesses to drive local economic development.

An academic from a top research university with expertise in economic development and entrepreneurial ecosystems will discuss her new research supported by the Kauffman Foundation. This research maps entrepreneurial support organizations (ESOs) in six cities to understand how organizational capacity and industry focus of programming varies based on the ESOs’ geographic location (e.g., a high-poverty census tract) and the demographics of the entrepreneurs the ESOs serve.

ICIC will share findings from new research, published in partnership with JPMorgan Chase, that presents an innovative new framework that city leaders can leverage to identify the most appropriate interventions and strategies for their market to foster the growth of minority-owned businesses in inner cities. This research leverages data collected from a new program, Ascend2020, which was created to support the growth of minority-owned businesses in inner cities by linking business schools, ESOs, and CDFIs in six U.S. markets using a 3-M model (addressing gaps in support in management education, money (access to capital), and markets (access to customers and clients)).

Finally, attendees will also gain a practical perspective by hearing a practitioner (representing a lead partner in the Ascend2020 program and managing a small business consulting center out of a leading business school) share learnings from his experience applying the 3-M model of support and driving local support ecosystems for inner city and minority-owned businesses.

This roundtable session will also be highly interactive for attendees, with our moderator facilitating a conversational format and allowing for a significant portion of the session to be devoted to audience Q&A.

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