14 Popular Brands You May Have Thought Were Black-Owned
October 10, 2013 | Posted by Tracy
2011, Nielsen and the National Newspaper Publishers Association
projected that black buying power will reach $1.1 trillion by the year
2015. This $1.1 trillion however is coming into our community and is
gong right back out. A community’s economic health directly correlates
to how many times money circulates or recycles within that community.
According to the University of Georgia’s Selig Center for Economic
Growth: “Money circulates zero to one time within the black community,
compared to the more than six times it circulates in the Latino
community, nine times in the Asian community and unlimited amount of
times within the white community.”
In the late 1980s the president of Revlon Irving Bottner told Newsweek: “In
the next few years, black-owned businesses will disappear. They’ll all
be sold to the white companies.” He added, “We are accused of taking
business away from the black companies, but black consumers buy quality
products – too often their black brothers didn’t do them any good.”
Essence, launched in May 1970, was a black-owned magazine
for black women. In 2000, Time Warner Inc. purchased 49 percent of
Essence Communication Inc., the publishing company that publishes Essence.
It 2005, Time Inc. agreed to buy the 51 percent it didn’t already own,
adding the African-American women’s lifestyle publication to its
Originally founded by Quincy Jones in 1993, Vibe magazine
was bought and sold by several private equity firms before most recently
landing in the portfolio of Spin Media. Spin Media also owns Concreteloop.com and Rap-Up.com
Black Hair is “an international bimonthly magazine for the
style-conscious black woman” owned by Haversham Publications Ltd, a
leading U.K. publisher of hair and beauty magazines.
Black Beauty and Hair
Black Beauty and Hair is “the leading hair and beauty
magazine for women of color throughout the U.K. and Europe.” The
bimonthly publication is owned by Hawker Publications Limited.
XXL and King
XXL magazine is touted as the new voice of the hip-hop
generation with a focus on “music, style, sports, and politics with
intelligence, sophistication, integrity and, most of all, respect.” King
is a monthly men’s magazine geared toward African-American and urban
audiences. Both properties are owned by Stanley R. Harris of Harris
In 1964 Edward and Bettiann Gardner founded Soft Sheen Products Inc.,
which produced a complete range of ethnic hair-care products. In 1997,
Soft Sheen employed 400 people and earned sales of close to $80 million.
July 1, 1998 the L’Oreal Group, the world leader in cosmetics and
hair care, announced the acquisition, through its U.S. subsidiary
Cosmair, Inc., of Soft Sheen Products, Inc. In 2000, L’Oreal purchased
Carson, Inc. and merged Carson with Soft Sheen to form SoftSheen-Carson.
A sample of products developed under SoftSheen includes: Mizani, Dark and Lovely, Optimum Care and Roots of Nature.
African Pride “addresses the critical hair care needs, styling, and
desires for consumers of color,” according to the company website.
African Pride, along with Dream Kids, ElastaQP, Profectiv, Relax
& Refresh, GrowthRenew, and Profectiv Professional are owned by
Strength of Nature Global, LLC.
Other notable mentions not owned by black people: Ultra Sheen, Soft
& Beautiful, Doo Gro, Dax, Creme of Nature, African Best, Pro-Line
(Just for Me), Dr. Miracles.
TheGrio.com, TheRoot.com, BlackVoices.com
While the concept for The Grio was presented by two black men, David A. Wilson and Barion L. Grant, the property itself is owned by NBC News.
Educator, writer and author Henry Louis Gates, Jr. helped create The Root however it is owned by The Washington Post Co., through its online subsidiary, The Slate Group.
BlackVoices was originally founded by African-American entrepreneur Barry Cooper, but was later sold to AOL-Time Warner.
Black Entertainment Television (BET)
Bob Johnson founded BET in 1980. In 2001, he sold it to Viacom, which also owns MTV and VH1.
According to the company’s website: DrJays.com was created in 1999 to “enable us
to share our passion for the urban lifestyle with millions of customers
in the U.S. and abroad.” Elliot Betesh is the founder and owner of Dr.
Jimmy Jazz is a “leading urban clothing and footwear retailer with
over 170 stores on major streets and malls in the United States.” The
urban retailer is owned by James Khezrie.
Digicel is a mobile phone network provider operating in 31 markets
across the Caribbean, Central America and Oceania regions. The company
is owned by Irishman Denis O’Brien, is incorporated in Bermuda, and
based in Jamaica. It has about 13 million wireless users.
Vodacom, whose parent company is U.K.-based Vodafone, is the second
largest company trading in Africa. Vodacom South Africa currently enjoys
58 percent of the South African mobile market, with around 23-million