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Business conference aims to promote black business owners

Posted at 7:31 PM, Mar 28, 2024
and last updated 2024-03-28 22:31:21-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Entrepreneurship started early for Roosevelt Williams III.

"Recycling Halloween candy at school, putting it in the freezer and selling it to classmates," said Williams.

Williams went on to start his own business as a cobbler, repairing shoes and handbags. But it didn't take long for a harsh reality to set in.

"I was by myself, I was solo," said Williams. "A lot of times I didn't know who to call, I lacked information and know-how."

So Williams started a group called Young Black & N' Business to give business owners the help and connections he wishes he had when he was younger.

"You'd be surprised how many businesses don't even know what an LLC stands for," said Williams. "Let alone how to register, how much it costs. Should they even become an LLC?"

Lendingtree released a study last month about which major cities have the most black businesses. San Diego ranked number 46, with just 1.5% of businesses here owned by African-Americans.

San Diego has a much smaller black population than many other cities on the list, but the area is still lagging behind the national average of 2.7%.

It's all part of a problem Williams wants to fix with Biz Con 2024, a business conference he plans to hold in May.

"At Biz Con we provide solutions," said Williams. "100 percent solutions and resources to help minority business and business in general exceed expectations, meet their metrics. Help them scale."

Williams hopes Biz Con 2024 can create more lifelong entrepreneurs like him.

"If you're a loan officer, let's find a realtor. If you're a realtor, let's find a plumber," said Williams. "Our motto is 'let's tie knots.' Let's make our rope stronger. Let's do business with each other."

Biz Con is scheduled for May 11 at the San Diego Convention Center. If you want to learn more, check out Biz Con's website.