BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — Building generational wealth is the goal for many minority business owners. But with over 50% of Black businesses failing within the first year, entrepreneurship comes with challenges. 

“A lot of the reasons why businesses fail, it’s not necessarily the lack of access to capital that causes them to fail within that first year, it’s the lack of training,” said Charletta Fortson, executive director of Louisiana Minority Business and Development Agency.

To combat the lack of resources, the Louisiana Minority Business and Development Agency (MBDA) is partnering with 100 Black Women of Baton Rouge to provide resources through programming. 

“As we tell all businesses, when you get started, you need an accountant, you need an attorney and a lot of the time we don’t have the money for that but through this partnership, they will have access to those resources,” said Fortson. “We want to make sure there’s a diversity of different funding options for our small businesses.”

The pair will focus on advancing economic opportunities for Black women in hopes of bridging the wealth inequality gap. 

“Until we change the policies around banking, around giving true access fair, equal access, competitive interest rates without these excessive fees, requiring our businesses to leverage everything they own personally and professionally until we can change those types of policies. We’re not going to really see the increase that we claim we want to see when it comes to working with minority businesses and giving them access to capital.”

Over the next few months, the partnership will host a generational wealth series that will include sessions on lending, succession planning, and tax planning. 

The mission of the National Coalition of 100 Black Women is to advocate on behalf of Black women and girls to promote leadership development and gender equity in the areas of health, education and economic empowerment. The mission of the MBDA is to foster growth and global competitiveness of U.S. minority-owned businesses.