10 November 2017
A business hub aimed at boosting African and Caribbean enterprises is to be launched in Birmingham.
The hub is being opened by Black Listings United Kingdom (BLUK), and is the brainchild of local businessman Jaston Richards, who said he was ‘concerned’ about the support and encouragement available to small African and Caribbean businesses.
He said that such businesses faced many hurdles, and added: “The sole trader or micro business people are often too busy with the business of survival to be able to scan the horizon, anticipate or access emerging opportunities.
“Whilst they are expert practitioners they do not have the skills or knowledge to position their products in the market place. In such cases BLUK will provide help with business plans, marketing and publicity.”
BLUK will be a growth hub for newly established and aspiring businesses, with each of these operating from the organisation’s Villa Road, Handsworth, premises for an initial period of 12 months. They will have a review at the midpoint and given help with a strategy plan 90 days later.
The hub building is home to five business units, a community bakery, a money transfer centre and a meeting/training room.
BLUK’s CEO, Chester Morrison, said that the new organisation would also act as a link between African and Caribbean businesses and the wider economy.
He said: “Although many have growth aspirations they sometimes do not have the infrastructure support that is a pre-requisite to the realisation of their goals”.
The hub will be opened by Chamber CEO Paul Faulkner next Tuesday (14 November) at 12.30pm.
Mr Faulkner said: “We are very proud to have BLUK as one of our members and look forward to supporting them with their hugely important initiative.”
Pictured: Sandra Cunningham (Birmingham Chamber Growth Hub), Joan Blaney (BLUK), Chester Morrison and Jaston Richards