Better Banking Blog

Why You Should Support Black-Owned Businesses

Aug 01, 2022

Beneficial State Bank client Alyssa Ndombeson, owner of Good Fill in Fresno, sits on steps, smiling at the camera.

August is Black Business Month!

It’s a time to celebrate the Black-owned businesses and organizations that make our communities great places to live and work, and to consider how to align our spending with our values.

Why are local businesses important?

Local businesses contribute to healthy local economies in many ways. Importantly, compared to chain stores headquartered elsewhere in the country, local businesses keep more of their revenue in the community. Local businesses can also be an important solution to wealth inequity. Studies show that 77% of wealth in the United States was made from owning a business. When we support local businesses, we support people in our community who are creating jobs for themselves and others.

A group of people stand together in front of a mural.
Staff at MESO, an Oregon nonprofit that helps small businesses start and grow. Beneficial State is proud to bank nonprofits like MESO that invest in growing local small business communities.

Why we should support Black-owned businesses

In 2019, while there were more than 5.7 million employer firms, only 2.3% of those were Black-owned. By contrast, Black people make up approximately 14.2% of the United States population. Black businesses are more likely to hire Black workers, so this disparity has ripple effects that impact broader community wealth and opportunity. Brookings Institute reports that bringing the number of Black-owned businesses to parity with white-owned businesses would result in 1.6 million more jobs. Today, Black-owned companies account for $133.7 billion in annual receipts and employ 1.3 million people.

Black-owned businesses face barriers to success

Starting a business requires money, and Black entrepreneurs typically start with less money than their white counterparts. Over the life of their businesses, capital tends to be invested more slowly in Black-owned businesses, which slows the overall business growth. Coupled with systemic barriers like institutional racism (implicit bias by those making decisions about funding and an overreliance on credit scores to determine creditworthiness, to name a few), Black-owned businesses have to work hard to find success.

COVID-19 has also had a disproportionate impact on Black-owed businesses. Due to less access to familial wealth and COVID relief funds, Black-owned businesses were less likely to weather closures and survive the economic turmoil brought on by the pandemic.

Where we spend our money matters

Thriving Black-owned businesses make our communities better for everyone. Watch this video that showcases the impact of Black-owned businesses.

You can find Black-owned businesses in your community through various business directories, through local Black Chambers of Commerce, and through community organizations.

A man with a tool works on updating a sign
Beneficial State Bank client Donpreyel Martin, owner of Insight Design and Printing in Fresno, CA, supports local nonprofits and businesses with affordable prices and excellent service.

Support community by banking with your values

When you deposit your money in the bank, you cast a vote for how you want that money invested. By moving your money to a bank that aligns with your values, you have the opportunity to make a difference where you live. Mighty Deposits is an independent, third-party that evaluates banks based on their investment decisions.

Beneficial State Bank is proud to be a community-focused bank committed to a triple bottom line of People, Planet, and Prosperity for All. Learn about how banking with us positively impacts our communities in California, Oregon, and Washington.

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People, Planet, Prosperity for All

We are proud to lend $21 million to support social justice, and $0 to weapons manufacturing. When you bank beneficially, you choose to support people and planet.

Choose a Bank that Invests in Tomorrow

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Beneficial State Bank serves the triple-bottom-line of people, planet, and prosperity for all. That means prioritizing social justice and environmental sustainability. Our clients want to see their money put to good use – funding causes that defend our planet and build resiliency in our communities. Change your bank and help change the world.

Spotlight on Organizations Led by People of Color

We are proud to support companies and organizations owned and led by people of color who are leading the way toward a more equitable world.

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