Minority Biz - Small Business Tips and News for Minority Owned, Black Owned, and Women Owned Businesses

Over the past five fiscal years, federal government agencies have spent approximately $5 billion in advertising, but only a minute share — $327 million — went to minority-owned businesses, according to a long-awaited report from the Government Accountability Office.

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LendStreet, the financial technology and services company founded by Jerry Nemorin, announced it has raised an additional $117 million in its new venture capital round.

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Since the 1990’s, One-E-Way CEO Earl Woolfork has been working to create wireless headphones. With perseverance and hard work, he created a pair of headphones that makes wires obsolete.

Woolfork created the E-Clip, wireless external headphones that can connect through AirPlay, Bluetooth and Wifi. The E-Clip is the first headset to connect via AirPlay and transmit high quality sound, according to Woolfork.

“We don’t believe there is a headset on the market that works with AirPlay,” he said. “So, we decided to put together the design and build and manufacture.”

One-E-Way has started a Kickstarter campaign for the E-Clip with a goal of raising $30,000. If connected to Wi-Fi, the E-Clip can play music for up to 10 hours. Through Bluetooth, it offers 50 hours of music playback. It is also equipped with an invisible microphone. The product is manufactured in the USA and can be used when taking calls, streaming videos and playing videogames.

Woolfork has a background in electrical engineering, having studied the subject at his alma mater: USC.

“I thought they actually provided plenty of information necessary,” Woolfork said. “That along with work experience to actually understand how to put something like this together.”

With the product, Woolfork wanted to give the customer a chance to hear music as the artist would want the customer to without wires. The E-Clip can connect with tablets, smart watches and laptops.

“When you’re talking about uncompressed audio, you’re talking about no loss of sound quality,” Woolfork said. “Bluetooth does compress the audio, they do have some compression in there, but Wi-Fi with AirPlay does not.”

What ignited his work was an observation he made while exercising at the Santa Monica stairs around 20 years ago. Woolfork noted that wireless headphones in the late 90’s could only provide AM/FM radio.

“I noticed that as people were working out, it’s kind of a challenge to actually have that wire, it’s kind of dangerous,” he said. “So, I said ‘We can eliminate the wire and not just eliminate the wire, but actually do it with quality sound.’”

Building the technology was a “process” for Woolfork, earning his first patent took him six years. He currently holds six patents.

“We actually started designing and researching and figuring out how this could all come together and then found the patent application. That was filed in 2001,” Woolfork said. “One of the things that we learned is that you have to stay diligent through the process.”

Woolfork however, did not leave the customer without the wire option, the E-Clip does contain a 3.5 mm headphone jack.

“We wanted to make it an all-around device that would provide high quality sound based on our patents,” Woolfork said. “And the ability to be able to use it in any kind of lifestyle.”

In 2015, Woolfork created a line of wireless wearable technology, merging earphones with caps, beanies and sun visors. At that time, he released seven products.

“We launched our first product with our caps, so that was basically having the wireless technology inside the caps,” he said. “It was still kind of unique at the time, that was our initial launch into the market.”


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Workspaces are popping up all over downtown and midtown Detroit but there are not too many in the neighborhoods. Thanks to the Motor City Match program, Elite Detroit Leadership event space, co-working space, and entrepreneurial hub will be coming to the Six Mile and Gunston area by the end of 2018.

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J’Mel Dowdell’s thirst for entrepreneurial life started when he was young. “My mom and I moved to Los Angeles; we were living in a hotel for months,” he recalls. “She had a hot plate and she’d fry chicken and fish and make sandwiches. We’d go sell them in MacArthur Park close by. We used the money to survive. That’s really what gave me my fearless, entrepreneurial spirit.”

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Since his 2015 departure from McDonalds where he served as CEO, Don Thompson has transitioned into the venture capital space with the late 2015 launch of “Cleveland Avenue,” a firm that focuses on food, beverage and restaurant ventures.

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Five cities have received grants totaling a half-million dollars via a national program to help black- and women-owned firms land more contracts with local governments. (Image: iStock/monkeybusinessimages)  As part of an expanded City Accelerator program, Charlotte, Chicago, Memphis, Milwaukee, and Los Angeles will each get $100,000 to boost...

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Through Business Equity Initiative, Eastern Bank is stepping up with a $10 million growth fund aimed at providing loans to build the capacity of businesses owned by people of color....

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Citizens Trust Bank has had something to celebrate in its 95th year: continued relevance. As a gift of sorts for its nearly century-long existence as an institution in the black community, the community gave back to the bank with nearly $1 million in deposits – in just five days last July. The major influx of […]...

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Paul Ryan Elliott, 31, took on his dream and created his own Vodka distillery and brand. As the CEO and Founder of loft & bear Vodka, he has won 11 awards and now has his vodka in Whole Foods, Target and Vons. The post Paul Elliott Creates Award-Winning loft & bear Vodka appeared first on Los Angeles Sentinel....

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