COLA Gives Presents The Black Entrepreneur Survival Summit

Do you want to become an entrepreneur by starting your own business and just don’t know what to do next?   Maybe you have done some research and now find yourself needing just a little guidance? According to data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, about 20% of small businesses fail within the first year and a startling 50% by the end of year five. Why? The top three reasons for failure are inadequate business plans, insufficient resources, and misdirected marketing.

The Black Entrepreneur Survival Summit  (B.E.S.S.) is designed to directly address these issues and start you on the road to success. The FREE Summit will take place Friday, August 23rd from 6:00 – 9:00 pm at the Robert Mills Carriage House located at 1616 Blanding Street, downtown Columbia. Business cocktails and refreshments will be served.

This workshop is presented by COLA Gives in celebration of National Black Philanthropy Month.  The Summit will cover various aspects of how to get started, develop a viable business plan, understand legal requirements, identify funding sources, and apply marketing and networking techniques.  The extremely knowledgeable and resourceful presenters are Ms. Cheryl Salley, Minority Business Development Manager for South Carolina Small Business Development Centers; Ms. Melissa Lindler, Director, Office of Business Opportunity with the City of Columbia and Mr. James Chatfield, Chief Lending Officer, South Carolina Community Loan Fund.

Jackie Griffin, President of COLA Gives says, “The Survival Summit is a must for emerging businesses as well as young entrepreneurs wanting to start on the right footing and avoid the many pitfalls.  Our Summit can even help those who have begun the process or even those who have been contemplating ‘should I jump in?’. I believe, this Summit would be beneficial to entrepreneurs at every stage of their business, so all are welcome!”

Beginning August 1st, registration and entry tickets for the Summit may be obtained through Eventbrite, (

The Black Entrepreneur Survival Summit is made possible by the generous contributions of Central Carolina Community Foundations, Historic Columbia, Midlands Technical College and consultation of DeAnna Bookert -The Bookert Agency, Renee Coletrain – Midlands Tech, and Michael Bailey-The Minority Eye.

COLA Gives (A Community Organized to Leverage Assets) is South Carolina’s first African American Giving Circle. Established in the spring of 2013, by a group of native, returning and new residents of South Carolina, who shared a common commitment to acknowledge and celebrate the African American community’s long-standing focus on the values of self-determination, self-help, and collective action. Their desire is to demonstrate the continuing efficacy of these and other values that have served the Black community well in the past and promises to be an effective tool, if strategically applied, for creating a successful future for all. COLA Gives leverages the resources available among our members, friends, and donors to recognize and support the good work done by local, community-based non-profits within the community.  These unsolicited “grants” of time, talent, and/or treasure are designed for those who “do the real work of delivering direct services and support” to further develop and improve the lives and circumstances of people in the community. Learn more about COLA Gives and the Summit at website:

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The MinorityEye

The MinorityEye is a news and information aggregator that curates the voices, thoughts and perspectives of minority writers, bloggers, authors, reporters, columnists, pundits, consultants and thought leaders as well as those who write about minorities and issues that impact people and communities of color.

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