DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — There are just over 160,000 Black-owned businesses in the U.S., according to the Census Bureau, but that’s only a small percentage of total business owners in the country.
Black business owners often face challenges like lack of access to capital to get their businesses off the ground. A local Dayton shop is supporting new entrepreneurs and helping customers find them.
One new entrepreneur is Chinah Jackson, who is a makeup lover and self-proclaimed “girly girl.”
Jackson says she wanted to try making and selling her own line of lip glosses, lipsticks and more. In 2019, Jackson officially launched her business — Mermaid Kissez Cosmetics.
Now, she’s shipping her products around the country and even internationally.
“I just had a shipment like two days ago in India, so it’s like really going good for me. I didn’t expect it to be this big,” said Jackson.
You can also find Jackson’s products set up in the Entrepreneurs Shoppe on West Third Street in Dayton.
Laeina Lovelace Musa is the manager of Entrepreneurs Shoppe. She says the shop is designed to give new business owners a storefront without having to be there all the time, which allows them to focus on the many other parts of growing a business.
“All the vendors currently in the store are Black-owned businesses,” Lovelace Musa explained.
Black entrepreneurs represent only around 9% of the total number of business owners in the U.S., according to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
Lovelace Musa says that makes spending money at Black-owned businesses all the more important.
“You want to shop local and you want to shop Black-owned because I mean, you know, it’s your people,” Lovelace Musa said.
The Entrepreneurs Shoppe is located in downtown Dayton at 1103 W. Third Street. It’s open between noon and 5 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.
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