African American Chamber of Commerce supports Black-owned business in Albuquerque
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Women of all ages gathered at Nexus Smokehouse Saturday for the annual Black Women’s Luncheon event during National Black Business Month.
“This year, our emphasis is on Black women entrepreneurs. It is very important because of who they are, what they represent, and a lot of times they don’t have the notoriety that they really deserve,” said Tammy Watson, an event organizer.
“This is one of the best times of the year for everyone to support Black businesses. We want to grow, we want to show people what we have, that we are here and that they can see us,” said Olivia Oyinatumba with Ucheoly Nigerian Outfits.
Originally from Nigeria, Olivia Oyinatumba, was inspired to launch her own company in Albuquerque with traditional Nigerian attire.
Five years later, her company is taking off.
“The women love the headwraps, and they like the boo boos like the one I am wearing. And they love for me to show them how to tie the – we call them Gele’s in Nigeria or headwraps– so the headwraps is one of my bestsellers,” said Oyinatumba.
Oyinatumba was one of many business owners at the event, but says the chamber has been instrumental to her success.
“Like, if they don’t have a business plan, I pay a consultant to help them write their business plan. If they don’t have a webpage, we pay for the first year of domain name and I pay a consultant to help them build a basic webpage,” said Karla Causey, CEO of African American Greater Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce.
The chamber also helps business owners with accounting and funding. They encourage people to keep supporting Black business beyond the month of August.
“This is a great time to go and see what type of opportunities, and types of services they can provide for us. But let’s support them year round, so they can continue to be strong, and continue to be a part of the economic power that we have here in the state of New Mexico,” said Beverly Gaines with the African American Greater Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce.