Yes, Virginia, there is an app for Black businesses
OW Staff | 4/10/2013, 5 p.m.
WASHINGTON, D.C.--Supporters of African American businesses across the country can now access real-time information to locate providers of goods and services, no matter where they are in America.
Through a groundbreaking partnership between the U.S. Black Chambers Inc. (USBC) and Around The Way--developers of the smartphone application--consumers will be able to locate Black-owned businesses utilizing the GPS feature built into their phones.
"Among the initiatives we are working on is the compilation of a database of all the Black-owned businesses in the nation," said USBC President Ron Busby Sr. "This partnership with Around The Way is an important first step.
Through the app, supporters of Black business can quickly access the location of businesses, no matter where they are in the country. We believe Around The Way provides an important tool in our quest to strengthen Black business."
According to Janine Hausif, CEO of Around The Way, African Americans--already demonstrated early-adopters of technology--are not only prolific consumers, but are value-conscious, brand loyal and extremely aware of their economic clout.
"We believe that Around The Way is the perfect blend of technology and convenience," said Hausif. "The app capitalizes on the above-the-index embrace of smartphone technology by African Americans with well over 50 percent of Black Americans using the devices to bridge the Digital Divide. Around The Way conveniently marries that usage pattern and growing consumer awareness. It makes perfect sense to join our efforts with U.S. Black Chambers Inc. efforts to increase awareness of the importance of supporting African American owned businesses."
The Around The Way app is currently available and free for both Android and iPhone users seeking to support their local Black businesses. Starting at $89 per year, business members of the USBC's 110 affiliate chambers nationwide will receive premium listings, featuring their business locations highlighted on local maps with the USBC logo. The app uses the GPS technology imbedded in the phone to find the user, then lists all the Black-owned businesses within a 5-mile radius.
"We can't imagine a more natural evolution, a better way to improve both the awareness of the number of Black-owned businesses and increase their bottom lines," said Busby. "Janine Hausif and her team at Around The Way have created an excellent app for the Black community. America's Black businesses and the consuming public will benefit tremendously--all by clicking an app on their phone!"
Business owners can find more information on the USBC website at www.usblackchamber.org and can download the app at www.aroundthewayapp.com. USBC members can sign up for premium listings at www.usbc.aroundthewayapp.com.