Alliance launches Detroit resource center for black-owned businesses

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Five months after its launch, the Metro-Detroit Black Business Alliance will open its Black Business Resource Center in downtown Detroit next week.

The center at 1234 Washington Blvd. will provide free internet access and a collaborative workspace for its members, officials said. Services are also available to non-members for a fee.

A big opening event is set for 6 p.m. Monday.

“Black businesses face many historic obstacles,” Charity Dean, president and CEO of the alliance, said on Friday. “The goal of MDBBA is to remove barriers to success in any way possible. By providing this hub to members, we are helping to bridge the digital divide that exists while creating space for unabashed black innovation and creativity in entrepreneurship.

The center will also hold workshops, seminars and other resources for black-owned businesses, officials said.

In September, black-owned businesses can use the center for free for coworking, internet access, and printing. The alliance also offers memberships to non-black business owners and non-black business owners.

The alliance was launched in March with $ 1 million from founding partner TCF Bank, now Huntington Bank, and has more than 200 members. It is led by Dean, who stepped down earlier this year as director of the City of Detroit’s Office of Civil Rights, Inclusion and Opportunities.

Kevin Johnson, President and CEO of the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation, congratulated the organization on its new center.

“This space will provide black businesses with access to resources, meeting space and networking opportunities,” he said. “We are aligned with MDBBA by prioritizing programs that enable black entrepreneur success and small business growth. “

Sponsors of the center include Comcast Business, Chase Bank and Molson Coors.

One of the organization’s accomplishments since its inception has been helping black-owned businesses access $ 2 million in funding through the Federal Personal Protection Program and the Restaurant Revitalization Fund. This summer, the alliance launched the Hastings Street Index, a directory of black businesses for Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties.

cwilliams@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @CWilliams_DN



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