Black Business News

project-image-thumbOur US service provides real-time and forward-looking news on corporate events (M&A, debt instruments, IPOs and LBOs), cross-border trade, legislative and regulatory coverage and commodity-specific intelligence. BBN will focus on the United States’ 200 most dynamic African American companies and help promote both inbound and outbound cross-border investment and M&A by Black Businesses.

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Bureaus-  Atlanta, Georgia; Birmingham, Alabama; Detroit, Michigan; Compton, CA; Chicago, Illinois; New Orleans, LA; Dallas, TX; New York City, NY; and Memphis, TN, Chartotte, North Carolina; San Juan, Puerto Rico, and Port au Prince, Haiti.

CI VIEW: AT&T CEO Stephenson takes on Alphabet’s Schmidt as Time Warner bid heralds new US antitrust regime UPDATE

WASHINGTON/BALTIMORE (BBN) – (Updating on September 23, 2017 to add interview of Sean “Diddy” Combs by US House Financial Services Committee Ranking Member Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) —  AT&T (NYSE: T) USD 85.4 bin dollar bid for Time Warner (NYSE: TWX) is seen marking the end of Alphabet (NYSE: Goog) and Facebook (NYSE:FB) dominant position in the US media market and heralding new antitrust action by the administration of President Donald Trump.

[21st Century Fox  and News Corp  Executive Chairman Rupert Murdoch speaks to Capitol Intelligence/Black Business News (BBN) using CI Glass on AT&T bid for Time Warner at The Wall Street Journal CEO Council Summit in Washington, DC. November 15, 2016]

The administration of Donald Trump is looking at taking long overdue antitrust action both by the US Department of Justice (DOJ) and US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) as the administration of Barack Obama gave a “free ride to Google, Facebook and Silicon Valley,” a Washington DC antitrust attorney close to the Trump transition team said.

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CI VIEW: Magic Johnson co-opts France’s Sodexo and Starbucks to bridge the opportunity gap UPDATE

WASHINGTON (BBN) — (Updated September 15, 2017 to include interview with Starbucks Executive Chairman Howard Schultz)  — Earvin “Magic” Johnson’s ability to co-opt some of the world’s largest companies such as Paris-based catering and outsourcing giant Sodexo (EPA:SW) and Seattle-based Starbucks (NASDAQ: SBUX) is more impressive than his exploits on the basketball court.

[Magic Johnson Enterprises founder and CEO Earvin “Magic” Johnson filmed by Capitol Intelligence/BBN using CI Glass at Back to School Block Party at all-male DC Public Ron Brown High College Preparatory High School in Northeast DC]

Johnson, who owns a 51% stake in SodexoMagic, — an educational catering business with Sodexo – returned to Washington DC where the company holds a city contract to give an inspiring speech to DC Public Schools first all-male high school, the Ron Brown College Preparatory High School in Northeast DC.

But Johnson’s strategy of targeting African-American communities such as nearby Prince George’s County and Harlem in New York with amenities such as shopping malls, Starbucks and move theaters has transformed his Los Angeles-based Magic Johnson Enterprises into a multi-billion private equity fund with an even more impressive 40% internal rate of return (IRR).

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CI VIEW: UVA President Sullivan and VA Gov McAuliffe failing to the top in Charlottesville

CHARLOTTESVILLE (BNN) — On Labor Day, the University of Virginia college town of only 40,000 residents was still reeling from the white nationalist/neo-Nazi riots that brought the tragic deaths of 32-year-old Heather Heyer and Virginia State Troopers Lt. H. Jay Cullen and Berke M. Bates during Unite the Right rally over the removal of General Robert E. Lee‘s statue in Emancipation Park.

[Pro-Confederate Labor Day protest filmed by Capitol Intelligence/BBN using CI Glass over the removal of Robert E. Lee statue at Emancipation Park in Charlottesville, Virginia. September 4, 2017]

But the shock is quickly turning into anger against University of Virginia President Teresa A. Sullivan and Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe for failing in their moral obligation to properly ensure the safety and security of UVA students and the citizens of Charlottesville.   

African-American Charlottesville residents such as Garcia Johnson and Cavalier Barbers owner Eric Massie were dumbfounded to learn that University of Virginia President Teresa A. Sullivan could have stopped the alt-right Tiki torchlight protest Friday, August 11 by exercising a Virginia law that makes it a Class 6 felony for anyone who burns an object with the objective to “place another person in reasonable fear or apprehension of death or bodily injury.” 18.2-423.01 of the Virginia Code.

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CI VIEW: SmartCEO – Fear, Loathing, Failure and Charlottesville UPDATE

BALTIMORE/CHARLOTTESVILLE (BBN) — (Updated on September 7, 2017 to add interview National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) Interim President and CEO Derrick Johnson and Charlottesville video footage and interviews) The rise and fall of Baltimore-based SmartCEO – the 15-year-old event and business magazine – is a glaring example of the contrast between the downward mobility of white flight suburbs and the resurgence of urban economies in the United States.

[National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) Interim President and CEO Derrick Johnson speaks to Capitol Intelligence/BBN using CI Glass on opportunity gap following speech to National Press Club of Washington, DC. August 29, 2017]

The contrast of the fortunes of urban economies to those of the suburbs can be seen in the rise and fall of SmartCEO and its founder, former suburban Belair, Maryland resident Craig Burris.  In less than a year, the 50-plus year-old Burris saw his fortunes rise to circa USD 40m before crashing down to personal and corporate bankruptcy and facing the real risk of imprisonment for fraud, embezzlement and larceny

However, the rising fortunes of our urban centers has breed a level of hostility, fear and prejudice in the once affluent suburbs not seen since the Boston school busing desegregation protests of the 1970s.

The most shocking images from Charlottesville was not the violence between neo-Nazis and the radical left, but the previous night’s torchlight procession of well-dressed suburban millennial males — filmed and reported by Elle Reeve of Vice News — chanting: “You will not replace us. Jews will not replace us. Blood and soil. Whose streets? Our streets! White lives matter.”

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CI VIEW: President Trump’s USD 1 trln infrastructure fund triggers National bank vs bond agency debate UPDATE

WASHINGTON/BALTIMORE (BBN) –  (Update on August 28, 2017 to add interview with US Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao and Maryland Governor Larry Hogan at Purple Line groundbreaking) — President Donald Trump plan to spend up to USD 1 trillion upgrading US infrastructure has triggered the first serious bipartisan debate in Congress whether the United States should establish a National Infrastructure Bank and/or national bond authority.

[President Donald Trump speaks with Capitol Intelligence/BBN using CI Glass at Economic Club of Washington DC event prior to entering race for Presidency and the opening of Trump International Hotel in Washington, DC. December 15, 2014]

US House Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman Rep. Bill Shuster (R-PA) says he opposes the establishment of a National Infrastructure Bank while US Senator Mark Warner (D-VA) is pressing for an independent National Infrastructure Bank or financing authority.

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CI VIEW: EXIM Bank catalyst for US job growth and reform with Mnuchin/Waters duo UPDATE

WASHINGTON/WHEELING, WV (BBN) (Update on May 18, 2017 to add comments by US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin) –The end of the long stalemate in Congress over the Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM) has unintentionally served as a catalyst to convince the CEOs of Fortune 100 giants such as General Electric Corp. (NYSE:GE), The Dow Chemical Company (NYSE: DOW), Honeywell International, INC (NYSE:HON), The Boeing Company (NYSE:BA) of the strategic need to lend their considerable resources to US small-and-medium and minority-and-veteran owned businesses to expand and compete in foreign markets.

[US House Financial Services Committee Ranking Member Maxine Waters (D-CA) speaks to Capitol Intelligence/BBN using CI Glass on President Trump naming former NJ Congressman Scott Garrett as EXIM Bank at Tax March at US Capitol, April 15, 2017]

The issue of large corporates helping US small and medium-sized businesses came after EXIM Bank opponents succeeded in blocking the nomination of new EXIM board members and thus limiting the export credit agency to making export guarantees of USD 10m or less.

President Donald Trump unblocked the impasse by nominating former New Jersey Congressman Scott Garrett as EXIM President and Chairman and former US House Financial Services Chairman and old-school Republican leader Spencer Bachus from Alabama as an EXIM board member. 

Meanwhile a highly unusual but effective alliance has been quietly forged between US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and US House Financial Services Ranking Member Maxine Waters (D-CA) to guarantee that EXIM Bank primary focus will be to serve US small-to-medium size exporters, with special attention to minority-and-veteran led businesses. 

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CI VIEW: Maryland’s Rushern Baker quietly brings massive Chinese and foreign investment to Prince George’s County

National Harbor, Maryland (BBN) – (Updated on August 28, 2017 to add interview with County Executive Rushern L. Baker III at ground breaking Purple Line light railway) As President Donald Trump beats the drum for Made in America, Rushern Baker III, the elected leader of a predominantly African-American county neighboring Washington, DC is the truly unsung hero for bringing Chinese and foreign direct investment and high paying new jobs to the USA.

[Prince George’s Country Executive Rushern Baker III speaks to Capitol Intelligence/BBN using CI Glass at the Congressional Black Caucus Legislative Conference on September 26, 2014]

While only the elected official of a province within the State of Maryland, Prince George’s County Executive Baker is feted as much as a governor of a large American  state on his numerous trade mission to mainland China.

The former military (JAG) lawyer was even seated next to Chinese President Xi Jinping during his State visit to the United States in September, 2015 with President Barack Obama.

In fact, Baker is preparing to lead a trade delegation of Prince George’s County companies to South Korea in the month of October 2017 after launching the historic Purple Line public-private partnership (P3) and success in building the USD 1.4 bn MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM) casino and convention center at National Harbor in Prince George’s County’s.

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CI VIEW: Hershey return to Cuba can sweeten US-Cuba relations under Trump

CENTRAL HERSHEY, Cuba [Camilo Cienfuegoes] (BBN) – The Hershey Company (NYSE: HSY) and its affiliated multi-billion non-profit Hershey Trust eventual return to Cuba can truly reset US-Cuban relations and let President Donald Trump end decades of hostilities following President John F. Kennedy Cuban embargo in 1962.

[Cuban Foreign Trade and Investment Minister Rodrigo Malmierca Diaz speaks to Capitol Intelligence/BBN using CI Glass on Hershey return to Cuba after historic speech at US Chamber of Commerce in Washington, DC. Feb. 16, 2016]

Hershey founder Milton S. Hershey created an almost mirror image of what he started in Hershey, Pennsylvania in 1916 by creating a new town just 30 miles east of Havana named Central Hershey.  Central Hershey had the largest sugar producing factory in the world, a Hershey Hotel and a Hershey School for disadvantaged Cuban children.

The unique progressive capitalism of Milton Hershey, who as an orphan and childless himself, ordered that all profits from Hershey Company go to fund the Milton Hershey School for orphans and disadvantaged children.

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CI VIEW: America’s new business Titans spread their wings

WASHINGTON, DC (BBN) – The new economic elite of the United States is not made of Silicon Valley moguls but the impressive number of Black American business tycoons such Chicago’s Loop Capital founder and CEO James Reynolds; Washingtonian real estate tycoon Donahue Peebles; Warrenton, Virginia luxury resort prima donna Sheila Johnson; NYC asset manager Christopher Williams and LA’s billionaire Act-1 Group human resource group owner, Janice Bryrant Howroyd.

[Loop Capital Chairman and CEO Jim Reynolds speaks to Capitol Intelligence/BBN using CI Glass following Closing the Wealth Gap hosted by US House Financial Services Ranking Member Maxine Waters (D-CA) at the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation Annual Legislative Conference in Washington, DC. September 16, 2016] 

While most of Wall Street may know Jim Reynolds as the golfing buddy of President Barack Obama, Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein, JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon and Citigroup’s Michael L. Corbat know Mr. Reynolds as Chicago’s top investment banker.

You will not meet America’s new blue bloods in SF/Palo Alto, Boca Raton Florida but at the same playing fields of America’s old blue bloods: Martha’s Vineyard, Sag Harbor/East Hampton and Middleburg, Virginia.

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CI VIEW: The Carolina Kitchen aims at USD 1bn IPO valuation, owner Lance London says UPDATE

 

WASHINGTON/LOS ANGELES (BBN) —  (Update on September 21, 2016 to add interview with Thompson Hospitality Chairman Warren Thompson) The Carolina Kitchen, the Washington, DC area high-scale soul and southern cuisine restaurant group, sees revenues rising to USD 45m at end-2014 from more than USD 20m in 2013, The Carolina Kitchen founder and CEO Lance London said.

[Carolina Kitchen owner Lance London speaks to Capitol Intelligence/BBN using CI Glass at Rhode Island Row opening Feb. 25, 2014]

In an interview at the opening of Carolina Kitchen on Rhode Island Row in northeast DC, London said his aim is to build The Carolina Kitchen group into a USD 1bn business and to continue expanding from its current locations of Largo and Hyattsville in Prince George’s County, Maryland and now Washington, DC.

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CI VIEW: Small and mid-market CEOs eye growth as big business retreat, Ernst & Young CEO

CLEVELAND, Ohio (SMARTCEO/BBN) – US small and mid-market CEOs attending the Republican National Convention proved that American small business owners are made of stronger stuff than politics or big business.

[Ernst & Young Chairman and CEO Mark Weinberger speaks to SmartCEO/Capitol Intelligence Group at Bipartisan Policy Center event during Republican National Convention in Cleveland. July 20, 2016]

At the RNC Convention in Cleveland that nominated controversial real estate mogul Donald J. Trump, only CEOs/owners of small to medium size companies came to the convention while the CEOs of major corporations took a pass with the very notable exception of Ernst & Young Chairman and CEO Mark Weinberger.

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