TSD Memphis



Black Enterprise out with 2013 ‘Top 100’

BlackEnterprise-400The top 100 African-American industrial/service companies – the core of Black Enterprise's 2013 report – collectively grossed more than $19.1 billion in 2012, a 2 percent increase over the previous year.

The BE 100s industrial/service companies employed 53,866 people in 2012, a 3 percent reduction from 2011.

The 60 largest black-owned auto dealers generated an additional $7.2 billion in revenues and employed 8,415 people in 2012. Despite the rebound of the domestic auto industry, the number of black-owned auto dealerships has yet to return to the levels prior to the beginning of the 2008 recession, when Black Enterprise ranked the top 100 largest dealerships.


The road to retail: Oo! D…Good Sauce

CarleeMcCullough-160ON OUR WAY TO WEALTHY Recently I tasted a sauce that was so good that I wanted to put it on everything. Already I have tried it on tacos, fish, steak, barbecue, hamburgers, chicken, lamb and French fries. The true treat was getting to know James Pitchford, who has taken the family sauce and perfected it. He started the Pitchford Sauce Company, LLC and this is his story.

Carlee McCullough: Tell me about yourself.

James Pitchford: In the past, my life has been one of struggle like so many others. With God I was able to persevere and overcome. I am steadily evolving as a person and as a business person. As it relates to my professional life, I have done heating, air conditioning, ventilation (HVAC) and plumbing in many capacities and for many clients. But as of recently, I am the founder and creator of Oo! D...Good Sauce®.


Myron Mays goes App

MyronApp-400Radio personality and "What's Happening Myron" entertainment columnist Myron Mays is now an App. Well, more precisely, Mays has just released the WHM Mobile App.

"It's a pretty good tool if you want to be connected to what's happening in Memphis," said Mays.

"I just added a Black Business directory to it and starting this Friday (Aug. 16), I will also have a small business resource feature as well. You can of course keep up with the Book Club happenings, listen to all of my radio shows and access all of the latest concerts and events."


Shunning stocks may come with a cost

CharlesSimsJr-160From March 2009 – when the stock market hit bottom during the financial crisis – through December 2012, investors withdrew almost $400 billion more from equity mutual funds than they added to them. During the same period, the S&P 500 gained more than 100 percent, leaving many frustrated investors in its wake.

The flight from stocks during the depths of the recession was not surprising, but 2012 saw the biggest migration from stock funds during the last five years. Yet the average equity fund, with reinvestment of dividends, gained 14.6 percent in 2012. Of course, past performance does not guarantee future results.

The tide seems to be turning in 2013, with net investment of almost $20 billion in domestic equity funds during the first two months. Perhaps it's a good time to examine the role of stocks or stock funds in your portfolio.


Who is Aaron Arnold?

aaron arnold-600Dynamic by any standard, an unconventional path towards success has defined and opened doors for Aaron Arnold – the under-30 CEO who will keynote this weekend's Memphis Urban League Young Professionals Empowerment Conference.

For those in need of a snapshot, consider this description: a young millennial innovator, risk taker, CEO, MC and party host, producer, trendsetter, inspirational speaker, entrepreneur and lifestyle expert.

Some might have called him crazy a few years back when he left a well-paying executive position with one of the top five PR firms in the world to work for free as an intern at Sean "Diddy" Combs' Bad Boy Records. Feeling burned out and dissatisfied with his career and having a burning passion for music, the Chicago (south side) native embraced the demanding task of working with "Mr. Combs" (as he respectfully refers to the hip hop mogul). And in the words of Robert Frost, "that has made all the difference."


How to become a Harley-Davidson ‘logo’ – without really trying!

David-bigSwole-Rose-600It took Jerry West a dynamic career and years of basketball brilliance before it happened to him.

It took Michael Jordan less time (in his rookie year) and the marketing brilliance of Nike (1985) to make him into one.

David "Big Swole" Rose? Well, he did it with mind-blowing speed, going from relative obscurity to brand logo in just a matter of months. Rose did so by revealing and embodying the unique and significant connection (as well as potential) between African-American motorcycle riders and the Harley Davidson brand.


Entrepreneurship: How do I get my product into stores

CarleeMcCullough-160ON OUR WAY TO WEALTHY Over the years I have come across some pretty unique products invented by folks eager to earn a profit from their product development of prototypes, samples and/or creations. From cookies to generators and sauce to hair products, the ideas are plentiful. But it takes a team and a plan to truly succeed on a large scale.

Now there is a difference between having your product placed in a few "mom and pop" stores and having them in Wal-Mart stores across the country. Let's discuss what it takes to bring your product to "retail ready."

Have a plan

An organized plan makes the process much easier to accomplish. The plan is the map to introduce the product and/or brand to retail. Decide early on if the plan is to "go small" or "go big" box retail. But either way, a plan is needed. Consider starting small, which may include flea markets, farmer's markets and smaller retail stores. Once you have a track record and a sales record, larger stores may gain interest.


‘PBS NewsHour’ names Gwen Ifill & Judy Woodruff co-anchors and managing editors

Ifill Woodruff-PBS-600LOS ANGELES – Gwen Ifill and Judy Woodruff will be co-anchors and managing editors for the "PBS NewsHour," according to an announcement made Monday (Aug. 5) at the Television Critics Association Press Tour.

Ifill and Woodruff will anchor the broadcast together Monday through Thursday each week. On Fridays, Woodruff will anchor solo as Ifill hosts "Washington Week" that evening. This will mark the first time a network broadcast has had a female co-anchor team.

It was also announced that Hari Sreenivasan will serve as senior correspondent for the "PBS Newshour" with Gwen Ifill and Judy Woodruff, reporting several times a week from WNET's Tisch Studios in New York, along with his duties anchoring "PBS Newshour Weekend" Saturdays and Sundays beginning September 7.


Bernard Bronner is Loving This Life


    …. And why wouldn’t he? The 52-year- old head of one of the world’s most iconic black hair care businesses has wisely parlayed his time at the company’s helm into not only expanding the Bronner Bros. Inc. empire, but now he is an award-winning publisher, movie producer and true business mogul. Bernard Bronner is, as they say in the movies, “Laughing his way to the bank.”

     The enigmatic entrepreneur explained to Atlanta Daily World staff in a recent interview, why he doesn’t stop to rest on his laurels in light of all that he has accomplished and all that is left for him to accomplish.

     Bronner’s business sense

     I think it was my father and the previous generation of Bronners who trained me on how to be an entrepreneur. My father and the publisher of the Atlanta Daily World were like family. My father threw the Atlanta Daily World newspaper, and as soon as I was able to walk good, I had the Atlanta Daily World in my hand. When I was six and seven I was delivering the paper and by the time I was 12, I had a couple of my brothers working for me throwing the Atlanta Daily World.

     I use the same principles I learned from my father regarding how to start and cultivate a business and grow it into a major enterprise. … And not only have I built the hair show and the product line, I have added new things like Upscale magazine, a silverware line and now the movie, Laughing to the Bank.

     The second generation has been running the businesses for about 30 years and the first generation ran things for about 35 years. We are in year 66 now. The first generation sold products in the six southern states. The second generation, my generation, took the show nationwide and now global. We just did a hair show in Dubai …, We’ve done London shows now, and we have done all of the Caribbean. We do Baltimore, Dallas, Oakland and Chicago along with Atlanta here in the states.

Bronner on the basics …

     One of the basic business principles that I have learned is to start small and make that small thing a success. That has been the hardest thing for me to get into my head. When I got into the record business, industry experts told me that I needed to make it popular in small cities like Macon and Augusta, before bringing it to Atlanta. I wanted Dallas and Chicago and L.A. but those markets are so expensive and if it doesn’t sell in a small town…. So now I test everything through the small towns; that is something I learned from Walmart. They started in small towns and then when there was nowhere else to go, they moved into the big cities.

His newest venture …

     I started a new movie company, Make It Rain Films, and we are releasing our first major movie. We showed it to the public for the first time in Miami at the American Black Film Festival. We screened it there to an audience of about 300 movie industry people and they loved it and it was the talk of the ABFF.

     What makes Laughing to the Bank so significant is the fact that it is 100 percent black owned, black produced and black distributed. So the movie and our philosophy are about economic empowerment. The movie is a comedy about someone who has to raise the money to shoot a movie. It’ a comedy about the process of making a movie and the rejection of going to the studios it deals with all of the trials and tribulations of going to major studios and telling them that you have a film for black audiences and you want them to finance it. That’s why the movie is so funny … because the process is near impossible.

The movie industry …

     It was a terrible year for black actors and black actresses. I have seen us go form 15 black oriented films last year to just a few this year and Rainforest Films’ Think Like a Man, and Tyler Perry’s and another that didn’t do so well.

     The studios have not been willing to green light African-American themed projects. They know we spend a lot of money and they know we are good consumers. They still don’t respect our people. They have done all of these studies that say this, yet they refuse to do anything black. They refuse to advertise or attend black events. They refuse even though they have the statistics that say these are the people who are buying your product. In Hollywood only a few studios address our audience.

The great thing is that I have great friends like Steve Harvey, and Michael Baisden and Tom Joyner who have committed to promoting the movie.

What he is proudest of …

     My claim to fame will not be that I inherited my father’s company and bled it. My claim to fame will be that I inherited my father’s entrepreneurship abilities and I built many companies. Not only did I build them, but I trained and continue to train others to do the same thing. I work with partners to ensure that they experience the kind of success that I am having. I don’t know how a human being can enjoy himself any more than I am.

The hilarious comedy Laughing to the Bank will be in theaters on Aug. 23!

Entrepreneurship: Stepping out on faith

Monique Clark-300ON OUR WAY TO WEALTHY Stepping out on true faith, Monique Clark voluntarily left Corporate America to start her own company. In partnership with her husband, Kenneth, Mrs. Clark created Infinite Clean, a full service maintenance company with a concentration on public and private sector. Having been moved by the wisdom of their 11-year-old son, The Clarks have not looked back. Join us for a two part article as Monique shares her journey with us.

Carlee McCullough: Tell us about yourself.

Monique Clark: I am originally from Sacramento, Calif. I have been married to Mr. Kenneth B. Clark for 23 years. We have six children and six grandchildren. I moved to Memphis fifteen years ago to assist my husband in caring for his grandmother who was 88 years old at the time.


Google to make Starbucks Wi-Fi 10 times faster

starbucks logo-500Google is teaming up with Starbucks to make Wi-Fi at its coffee shops 10 times faster.

Over the next 18 months, Google will be upgrading all 7,000 company-operated Starbucks locations in the United States. Starbucks already offers free Wi-Fi at its coffee shops, but the company said faster Internet speeds will give it a competitive advantage.

"Our goal is to continue to provide our customers with the best in-store experience possible, and we are excited to offer these kinds of unparalleled experiences at a broad scale," said Adam Brotman, Starbucks' chief digital officer.


The ABCs of bonds

CharlesSimsJr-160MONEY MATTERS Bonds are issued by federal, state, and local governments; agencies of the U.S. government; and corporations. There are three basic types of bonds: U.S. Treasury, municipal, and corporate.

Treasury Securities

Bonds, bills, and notes issued by the U.S. government are generally called "Treasuries" and are the highest-quality securities available. They are issued by the U.S. Department of the Treasury through the Bureau of Public Debt. All treasury securities are liquid and traded on the secondary market. They are differentiated by their maturity dates, which range from 30 days to 30 years. One major advantage of Treasuries is that the interest earned is exempt from state and local taxes. Treasuries are backed by the full faith and credit of the U.S. government as to the timely payment of principal and interest, so there is little risk of default.


Dessert bar owner hits home with entrée cupcakes

cupcakes-600Local food artisan and owner of Haute Monde dessert bar Fran'Kel Mosley showcased her modernized twist on simple finger food at a Groupon food tasting hosted at The New Tri-State Defender's office on Sunday, June 21st.

The hit of the afternoon came when Mosley introduced her new line of "savory" entrée cupcakes. Presented as a twist on the traditional American Sunday dinner, the guests quickly lined up for an imaginative way of enjoying meat loaf and mashed potatoes, chicken and dressing with sweet potatoes, and especially table favorite (and crowd pleaser), macaroni and cheese. Yep, homemade macaroni & cheese baked in a cupcake mold, as a side dish to the main courses.