AFRICANGLOBE – Discovering entrepreneurial talent to highlight as role models is the best way to inspire the next generation of Black business leaders, the founder of the inaugural Black British Business Awards has said.
Melanie Eusebe, chair and co-founder of the Black British Business Awards, will host the event on October 2 to honour the outstanding rising stars and leaders in industries ranging from financial services to media and the arts.
Judges include MediaCom chief executive Karen Blackett; Apprentice winner Tim Campell; Sandie Okoro, global general counsel at HSBC Asset Management; and Sophie Chandauka, head of asset financing at Virgin Money. The public has until May 27 to submit nominations.
Eusebe said: “[This is] a welcome opportunity to showcase some of the talented Black entrepreneurs and business brains in Britain.
“We hope by celebrating the achievements of some of these accomplished individuals we can inspire a new generation of young Black British aspiring business people.”
The Prime Minister David Cameron, Deputy PM Nick Clegg and business secretary Vince Cable are all backing the awards, sponsored by EY.
Cameron said: “The fact that 20 per cent of loans from the Government-backed Start-Up loans scheme, which helps to kickstart new enterprises, go to people of African Caribbean heritage demonstrates the deep well of entrepreneurial talent we have in our country.
“The business skills and entrepreneurial spirit of Britain’s African Caribbean community gives me great confidence for the future as I know they will play a key role in securing Britain’s economic recovery.”
At present, two out of every three FTSE 100 companies have an all-White board, highlighting a need for greater diversity. Two thirds have no full-time minority executives at the board level.