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Santa Monica Black-Owned Businesses and Entrepreneurs
June 30, 2020 2:44 PM
by Erin Taylor
We recently interviewed a variety of Black-owned Business Owners in Santa Monica to hear their unique story and perspectives. Read on to hear about these amazing small business owners throughout our City and how the Santa Monica community can provide support. This is Part 1 in a series. If you are a Santa Monica business, and you’d like to add your story, email email@example.com.
On a related note, the Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce will be hosting “Santa Monica Black Leadership: A Business Community Conversation” on July 9. As the nation engages in a discussion on racial justice, and the City of Santa Monica embarks on the creation of a Black Agenda, join the Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce and the Greater Los Angeles African American Chamber of Commerce for a conversation with some of our region's top Black leaders. Register Here>>
Part 1 in a Series
Local Business Provides Hair Care Products that Cater to the African-American and Mixed Culture Communities
Kimberley (second from the right), a 24 year Santa Monica resident, created the “Hair, Love It!” business to fill a gap. She found that hair care products that cater to the African-American and Mixed Culture communities were simply not available in Santa Monica and people would have to go to Los Angeles to properly care for their hair. This was such an inconvenience and inspired Kimberley to create her pop up business that offers a wide range of products to maintain and care for all types of hair. Read more about her story>>
Business Name: Hair, Love It
Business Owner: Kimberley
Brief History: Kimberley’s business has existed for over 5 months. It all started as a one day pop up Beauty Supply Store/Hair Parlor event bringing barbers, hair stylists, and the community together as part of the City of Santa Monica Wellbeing MIcrogrants.
What types of products/services do you offer? As part of the pop up grand opening event, Kimberley wanted to offer a range of services to maintain and care for different hair types. There was a barber, a blow out bar, a station for extensions, braiding, dreadlocks, press and curl, hair relaxing, and makeup, a station for mixed cultures, and a natural hair care bar. I wanted to offer a range of services to maintain and care for different hair types like curly, straight, kinky, and more.
Why did you decide to open a business here? I found that hair care products for the African-American and Mixed Culture communities were simply not available in Santa Monica. I wanted to make accessing these products and services more convenient.
Interesting Facts About Your Business: My business fills a gap in Santa Monica. Hair care products that cater to the African-American and Mixed Culture communities are simply not available in Santa Monica. My business also saves people time and money because accessing the products is more convenient than driving to Los Angeles.
How can the Santa Monica community support you and other Black owned businesses? Order products and continue to support my business! Let the broader community know that you want to continue to support this business.
What information do you want the Santa Monica community to know? Our needs are being met by providing products right here in our home community. My store is open to everyone but it also fulfills a specific need of the Black and mixed culture community.
Kimberley is working on opening up a physical location for her business. Due to COVID-19, she has not yet had another pop up event, but she encourages people to call or email her, and she will meet up with you with particular products. Kimberley also caters Creole and soul food with her catering business called “Creole Lady Soul Food.”
Contact Information: Hair.Love.firstname.lastname@example.org or 424.322.0525
Hours of operation: 8 a.m. to 5p.m. Daily
In Home and Online Tutoring Services Offered by Local Teacher with 20 years of Classroom Experience
Keli, owner of “Club Z! In-Home Tutoring Service”, believes that all students have an ability to learn if you cater to their unique learning styles. Keli knows everyone takes in information differently so she gets excited about creating lifelong learners through her tutoring business that caters to individual needs. Read more about her story>>
Business Name: Club Z! In-Home Tutoring Service
Business Owner: Keli (pronounced Kee-lee)
Brief History: This franchise business opened in Santa Monica/West Los Angeles in June 2016
What types of products/services do you offer? Month to month, one-on-one tutoring for all subjects from Pre-K through College, including special needs. We take a practical approach to tutoring. We support the students on the standards they are working on in the classroom and fill in the missing concepts. Club Z! tutors specialize in specific subjects like phonics, chemistry, calculus or specific needs like enrichment, foreign languages, test prep, and more.
After scheduling a free consultation, an educational consultant will review your child’s work, teacher notes, and get a sense of your child’s personality. Our goal is to match your child’s personality and learning style with a tutor based on both skillset and personality.
Why did you decide to open a business in Santa Monica? I grew up in Palo Alto and came to Los Angeles to attend UCLA. I became part of the community, coached AYSO girls’ soccer in Santa Monica and had my first apartment here. After college, I never went home! When I bought this franchise, I wanted to open in my adopted city.
Interesting Facts About Your Business: I believe all students have the ability to learn. Classroom sizes have gotten so large so creating that ah-hah moment for all students is challenging. The classroom caters to auditory learners and everyone takes in information differently. My vision was to compliment and augment classroom learning by catering to individual needs. I am able to do this by matching diverse learning styles with a wide array of tutors who customize the learning experience to each student’s needs. I get excited when they get that boost of confidence and become a lifelong learner.
What information do you want the Santa Monica community to know?
Businesses typically build a legacy of success through entrenched community connections. Either through generational inheritance, long-standing familial relationships, school and college legacies, or localized circles of friendship built over decades. Additionally, statistically, Black-owned businesses are do not get the same consideration for loans or financial products.
Black-owned businesses are no different than any other business in regard to quality of services and products. However, the patrimony of established connections and the differences in the financing experiences of black-owned businesses, negatively impact our ability to gain the same exposure and compete on the larger scale. Black-owned businesses are essentially starting multiple steps behind.
How can the Santa Monica community support you?
Referrals from friends and family are essential for small businesses. If each person steps out of their circle to make a conscientious effort to be more inclusive it would have a lasting ripple effect for generations to come. Businesses owned by people of color can gain some of the word of mouth legacy, while Santa Monica would find equally high-quality products and develop relationships that can help expand the community’s world view.
What else do we need to know about you or your business?
Club Z! westside has been an active member of the Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce for 4 years. I serve on the Education Committee and am on the Board of the Young Professionals Committee, where we concentrate our efforts on local nonprofits, civic engagement, and business development. I like to be involved and believe people should do their part. Our community is only as strong as the individuals who participate. We will always accomplish much more together.
Contact Information: Clubztutoringwestside.com | 424.214.0709
Hours of operation: 8 a.m. – 9p.m.