By: Priscilla Wiredu
In today’s savvy business world, Black businesses have unique, safe-space networking that can ensure inclusivity and the chance for local businesses to grow.
BlackOwnedTO is an example of a successful platform that showcases Black businesses.
BlackOwnedTO is a start-up shop in Scarborough Town Centre selling products from local Black entrepreneurs.
BlackOwnedTO would soon evolve into a successful website and directory for Black sellers and vendors.
In addition, BlackOwnedTO offers an online platform devoted to highlighting Black businesses across the GTA.
Created to help tackle the difficulty of finding local Black businesses within the city, it is an economically-rewarding system that helps give back to local communities.
How it Works
The front page of BlackOwnedTO’s website includes four categories: Skincare, Candles, Haircare, and Kids. Depending on which category you click on, you will come across a long list of items that pique your interest or what you purchased in store. From books to greeting cards to baby supplies, there is virtually everything you could want at a reasonable pricing.
They have an online form for those wishing to become a vendor within their company and offer many options to pay for the items they advertise on the website.
At the end of July, BlackOwnedTO holds an event known as Foodville Fest, a summer event celebrating African, Caribbean, and Afro-Latino foods. Equipped with Black vendors, DJs, specialty chefs, and live performances, Foodville Fest is a charitable safe space for Black people within the community that highlights the importance of Black cuisine.
BlackOwnedTO has partnered with Private Cay Media to make Foodville Fest happen.
Accomplishments and Reviews
To this day, BlackOwnedTO’s Instagram has acquired well over 70k followers and has held pop-up shops in Square One, holiday markets, and Black History Month events.
Their Scarborough location has an average rating of three point nine out of five stars on Google. They have also appeared on CBC, 6ixBuzz, and Breakfast Television about their mission and established partnerships with other businesses like CIBC, Interac, and Toronto Public Library.
BlackOwnedTO is more than just a business. It ensures inclusivity and opportunities for up-and-coming Black entrepreneurs. It offers a safe space as well as a great place to start up a business and make money for one’s products and/or talents. BlackOwnedTO provides initiatives to help local Black communities start their business ventures in a variety of different ways.
BlackOwnedTO is located at:
300 Borough Drive
Scarborough, Ontario M1P 4P5
They also have a contact page and form for further inquiries.
Priscilla Wiredu is a writer for this year’s Black Voice project. An alumni of York University, she graduated with Honors where she studied Social Sciences. She then went on to get an Ontario Graduate certificate in Creative Writing from the Humber School for Writers, and a college certificate in Legal Office Administration at Seneca College. She is currently studying for the LSAT in hopes of going to law school. Her main goal as a Black Voices writer is to ensure Black issues and Black Pride are enunciated through her works.