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Past Event

State of Black businesses: Resilience in the face of a pandemic

Past Event

While the pandemic has disproportionately hurt preexisting Black businesses – who face steeper declines in sales and a harder time accessing capital than their white counterparts – it has also spurred the creation of new Black firms, according to a 2021 report published by the National Bureau of Economic Research, particularly a surge of new online microbusiness. However, structural changes are needed at the federal, state, and local level to sustain and build on this newfound growth. 

On Wednesday, February 16, Brookings Metro hosted an event to assess the state of Black businesses in metropolitan areas across the country, in collaboration with the Path to 15|55 initiative, which endeavors to grow the percentage of Black-owned employer firms. Senior Fellow Andre Perry presented findings from a new Brookings report, “Black-owned businesses in U.S. cities: The challenges, solutions, and opportunities for prosperity,” and an expert panel explored policy solutions that can build upon the recent rise of small, Black-owned firms and make structural changes that will enable the economy to work for entrepreneurs of all races.

Viewers submitted questions by emailing events@brookings.edu or tweeting to @BrookingsMetro using the hashtag #BlackBusinesses. 

Agenda

Opening remarks and presentation

Panel discussion

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