African-American consumers spend $1.1 trillion dollars each year. As a consumer group, if it were a nation, would rank as the 16th wealthiest nation in the world. During a visit to the Grand Rapids Black Chamber of Commerce, author and speaker, Dr. George C. Fraser, specializing in minority networking and wealth building explained when it comes to production, African-Americans have some catching up to do…and it can be done.
“You cannot consume yourself into equality and you cannot consume yourself into power.”
For 28-years, Dr. George C. Fraser has been on a mission.
“To help black people become the number one employer of black people by the end of the 21st Century, I think it will take about 100 years. It’ll take three to five generations.”
But building that inter-generation wealth is critical to African-Americans becoming an impactful and competitive producer of goods and services.
As Founder and President of Fraser Net, Dr. Fraser has built what he calls a “global leadership network of 61,000 Black professionals, business owners and community leaders.”
“The fact of the matter is we still have the lowest number of businesses per capita of any cultural group in this country and we came over here on the Mayflower. We understand that the Jews are the number one employer of Jews. Asians are the number one employer of Asians. East Indians are the number one employer of East Indians. Arabs are the number one employer of Arabs. But ultimately we too must join that group and become the number one employer of our own people. That will take an entrepreneurial focus in the 21st Century.”
To get there, Dr. Frasers touches on the power of networking or “connecting the dots” as he likes to call it.
“So that we can leverage more effectively our collect resources… We must stop operating in silos, get out of those silos, build strategic alliances, joint ventures and partnerships. Understand that nobody is going to save us but us. I mean, at the end of the day we are responsible.”
Fixing economic illiteracy is critical. At the end of the day, Fraser explains economic success comes through equity and ownership.
Patrick Center, WGVU News.