Entertainment mogul Sean Combs has created a new initiative to help promote Black businesses. His #CIROCStands campaign is another way to make the stories of Black entrepreneurs come alive.
According to Black Enterprise, the campaign will begin in New York, Diddy’s place of origin. CÎROC will highlight the stories of three local businesses and their owners.
The brand will also provide mentorship and allow the businesses to gain national exposure with Black CÎROC executives.
Diddy has been very intent on helping Black businesses get the shine they deserve.
In a 2018 interview with Variety, he expressed his consternation with how society takes from Black people to grow its riches but rarely invests back into the culture.
“We only get 5% of the venture capital invested in things that are black-owned — black-owned businesses, black-owned ideas, black-owned IP,” he said. He noted that when the community is blocked out of resources, it stunts the ability for growth.
In July, Diddy partnered with Salesforce to bring more Black brands to the digital space and launched SHOP CIRCULATE.
“Building Black wealth starts with investing in Black-owned businesses and giving entrepreneurs access to the consumers needed to build sustainable companies that can thrive,” he said.
The #CIROCStands campaign will promote three New York-based Black female entrepreneurs whom it says personify Black excellence and achievement.
Melissa Mitchner owns a 24-hour dog daycare in Harlem will be mentored by Def jam executive Natina Nimene. The Bakery on Bergen, owned by Akim Vann in Prospects Heights, will be mentored by iHeart Radio executive Thea Mitchem. Lastly, Ursula Stephen, a Brooklyn boutique salon, will be mentored by Brandice Daniel of Harlem’s Fashion Row.
Black businesses only comprise 2.2 percent of the nation’s employer businesses (more than one employee) despite being 14.2 percent of the population. Thankfully, #CIROCStands is attacking the disparity head-on.