The crisis disproportionately threatens Black entrepreneurs

LatamList – The coronavirus crisis has hit entrepreneurs hard, particularly many Black entrepreneurs. 

In Brazil, 40% of Black adults are business owners. Entrepreneurship has become one of the main economic alternatives for the Black population, who have historically been neglected by the formal job market. 

While some entrepreneurs decide to start a business because a great opportunity presents itself, others do it out of necessity. A Sebrae survey conducted in 2018 showed that only 55.5% of Black entrepreneurs open a business in pursuit of an opportunity, compared to 71.5% of White entrepreneurs that do so for the same reason. 

According to the survey, 13.6% of White entrepreneurs, compared to 7.7% of Black entrepreneurs earn more than $7K per year, which is double the minimum yearly wage in Brazil of approximately $3K

At Umbono Comunicação, a digital marketing agency that works largely with Black entrepreneurs, Igor Izidoro and Bruno Rico have felt the immense pressure of the pandemic crisis.

Many of Rico’s clients are Black women running small businesses who face even more difficulties than men.

“Everything is more difficult for them […] Many are mothers, and with schools closed, children had to stay at home. This directly affected their production,” he noted.

The drop in credit is another concern for Black entrepreneurs during the crisis.  A survey commissioned by PretaHub, a Brazilian accelerator for Black entrepreneurship, showed that 32% had already been denied credit without explanation at the end of 2019. 

Read more on Exame

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