Study: Black-Owned Businesses Contribute Billions to Greater Cincinnati Economy | Cincinnati News | Cincinnati

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click to enlarge Briston Mitchell, director of transformative initiatives and relationships for the Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky African American Chamber of Commerce, speaks during a press event  at Esoteric Brewing Company Sept. 19, 2022. - Photo: Madeline Fening

Photo: Madeline Fening

Briston Mitchell, director of transformative initiatives and relationships for the Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky African American Chamber of Commerce, speaks during a press event at Esoteric Brewing Company Sept. 19, 2022.

A study from the University of Cincinnati Economics Center shows just how much of an economic impact Black-owned businesses have on Cincinnati’s economy.

In partnership with UC, the Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky African American Chamber of Commerce (AACC) released the findings of the “Economic Impact of Black-owned Businesses in Southwest Ohio Communities” Sept. 16. The study found that Black-owned businesses in Greater Cincinnati support more than $2.1 billion in economic activity, up from $1.4 billion since the study initially was conduced in 2021.

The study surveyed nearly 1,000 Black-owned businesses across four counties: Hamilton, Butler, Clermont and Warren. The survey identified the three largest industry categories among Black business owners in the area:

  • Services ranging from event planning to cosmetology to life coaching
  • Transportation and warehousing
  • Healthcare and social assistance

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AACC emphasized the organization’s role in growing the local economy for Black-owned businesses, including providing business counseling and technical assistance. 
“We assist them with access to capital, marketing plans, business plan development,” Annette Tarver, technical assistance and outreach coordinator for AACC, said during a Sept. 19 press conference at Esoteric Brewing Company. “We also do web development and search engine optimization.”

Briston Mitchell, director of transformative initiatives and relationships for AACC, said the survey also allowed the chamber to gauge what Black businesses in Greater Cincinnati need to continue growing.

“They’re looking for networking events. We’re providing those,” Michell said during the press conference. “Marketing is big. Everyone wants to market and let people know their business exists and is out there.”

UC says that no chamber of commerce in the entire country had quantified the economic impact of Black businesses in their community until the university and the AACC launched its ongoing study in 2021.

“Our partnership with the African American Chamber presented an opportunity to show how valuable Black-owned businesses are to the region,” said Dr. David Mahon, executive director of the UC Economics Center. “This report makes clear that these businesses are an essential part of the Greater Cincinnati economy and its future.”

Visit the AACC website for more information on services for small businesses.

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