September 30, 2021
Empower Me Events Group hosted the Black Owned Business Showcase at the Four Seasons Town Center. The event was created to provide black small business owners with a platform to promote their products and services.
Founded in 2018, Nadine Ayinuana created Empower Me after seeing the success of her business, Kitkos. Kitkos is a retail store specializing in handmade African clothing located in the Concord Mills Mall. Seeing how much her business has grown in just three years, she wanted to empower other small business owners to do the same.
“When I started my business, I wanted to be able to give small businesses a way to engage and inspire people,” Ayinuana said. “When you engage with people, you inspire them and they give you feedback to grow. “
Empower Me hosts these storefronts to help showcase businesses’ products and services in the mall environment. Ayinuana specifically focuses on black and minority owned businesses to give a voice and a sense of belonging to our entire community.
“As black people, we have no voice,” Ayinuana said. “We have been used to working for others whom we are not proud to say are a black owned company. I wanted to create the opportunity to celebrate and celebrate ourselves as people of color.
From September 24-26, several black-owned businesses were established in the mall, offering goods and services such as The Essentials 2 Life LLC., Tiny’s Creations, Pink Hair Beauty Supply and many more. Latasha Mcgill, independent Paparazzi jewelry consultant, has been to several events such as this one. She thinks it’s a great opportunity for people to put their skills and talents to use and turn them into businesses.
“Whatever you do at home, you can turn it into a business,” Mcgill said. “If you make shirts, if you can cook, if you sew, anything! You can make it your business.
Ayinuana not only organizes these events for business owners, but also supports them early in their journey in the retail industry. She encourages them to be consistent and intentional.
“Whatever you want to do, do it,” Ayinuana said. “If someone tells you no, don’t take it and juit. Keep pushing. If they don’t give you a seat, you bring your own.
Ayinuana also reminds those starting their entrepreneurial journey to remember that it won’t always happen overnight and encourages them to always network at every opportunity.
“It’s not just about making money,” Ayinuana said. “It’s about building awareness of your brand. “
Empower Me will host another showcase of black-owned businesses during GHOE week October 24-26 at the Four Seasons Towne Center. This event is free and open to the public. For more information, visit the Empower Me website website and be sure to follow them on Instagram and Facebook for updates on upcoming events.