black business, black business merger, Business, Michigan Black Chamber of Commerce, National Business League -

Michigan Black Chamber of Commerce Acquires National Business League

black business, black business merger, Business, Michigan Black Chamber of Commerce, National Business League -

Michigan Black Chamber of Commerce Acquires National Business League

Black business leaders gathered in Detroit’s Campus Martius Park to hear the announcement of the merger of the Michigan Black Chamber of Commerce with the National Business League. Photo/Facebook

The Michigan Black Chamber of Commerce, a statewide group that promotes Black businesses, acquired the National Business League, an organization with a similar mission, in a move the two organizations promised would help Black-owned businesses across the nation, according to Crain’s Detroit Business.

The new organization will be called the National Business League.

Founded in 1900 by Booker T. Washington, the league will relocate its headquarters from Washington to downtown Detroit. Ken Harris, CEO and co-founder of the chamber, will become the league’s CEO and president, and the organization will get a new logo featuring Washington’s likeness.

“We are now the National Business League,” Harris said in an announcement on Monday, June 19 at Campus Martius Park in Detroit. “This gives Black businesses a national platform with a 117-year history.”

Malcolm Branch, the league’s president emeritus, said the deal had been in the works for nearly two years. The idea, he said, was shared between Harris and Thomas Dortch, a former league chairman.

He declined to reveal the cost of the deal.

“The NBL national office has been maintained by the former President W. Ronald Evens for the last 15 years with little or no external funding,” said Branch in an email. “The MBCC has substantial administrative resources and new energy.”

Combining the two nonprofit organizations into one also gives the Michigan chamber a national reach, and the league, which has declined in growth, new leadership, direction and energy, according to the Detroit Free Press.

The timing of the announcement, made on Juneteenth, comes at a time of significant inequality facing the Black community.

Harris told the Free Press that the acquisition will expand the reach of the 5-year-old chamber from about 3,200 members in Michigan to an estimated 15,000 members in 365 chapters nationwide, potentially utilizing the league’s offices in Washington, Detroit, Atlanta and Los Angeles.

“A lot of people don’t know this organization was founded 12 years before the U.S. Chamber of Commerce,” Harris said of the league.

“You are witnessing not only the recognition of more than 47,000 African-American businesses that reside in Detroit, now you can be a part of the chance to be a part of the 2.5 million black businesses nationwide.”


Leave a comment

Related Posts

Bus Crash Horror: 1 child dead and 40 people hurt on youth football trip
BENTON, Ark. (AP) — A charter bus carrying a youth football team from Tennessee crashed early Monday in central Arkan...
Read More
Black Hair Matters: The Affirmative Power of Politicians Like Ayanna Pressley and Stacey Abrams
When Ayanna Pressley got her Senegalese twists done for the first time about three years ago, it was a moment of affi...
Read More
Freshen Up Your Board Game Collection With This One-Day Amazon Sale
It’s not quite as jam-packed as Amazon’s Black Friday board game sale, but their 12 Days of Deals strategy game sale ...
Read More
It’s an Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl rematch: Alcorn State vs. N.C. A&T Braves win SWAC title and and now bring their high-powered offense to bowl game
Well, it’s all set. The matchup for the Dec. 15 Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl in Atlanta is actually a rematch: ...
Read More

Tags