Project Main Details
The America21 Project introduces a new economic narrative to empower and connect historically disconnected sectors to America’s 21st century innovation economy from pipeline to productivity.
******************************************************************************************* 2012-01-28 14:32:31 GMT 2012-01-31 14:00:00 (GMT -05:00) Eastern Time (US & Canada) Yes (click here to learn more about ) Closed 0 0 7 direct invitation(s) have been sent by the voice seeker resulting in 0 audition(s) and/or proposal(s) so far. Voice123 SmartCast is seeking 50 auditions and/or proposals for this project (approx.) Invitations sent by SmartCast have resulted in 0 audition(s) and/or proposal(s) so far.
The economy we are facing today is a new economy. Whereas the 19th and 20th-century economies were driven by manual labor, the 21st-century economy is knowledge-based, and driven by science, technology and innovation. This latest shift goes beyond unemployment rates, the housing market, and stock market prices. Look a little closer, and you will see a crisis at the heart of Black America and the nation as a whole.
Out of 28 million US businesses, 22.6 million are white-owned with the remainder split evenly between Asians, Hispanics, and Blacks. In terms of gross revenue, however, black-owned business rank dead last by a margin. When factoring in census population estimates, per capita revenue for Black America falls off even sharper -- generating only half as much per capita as Hispanics, and less than 1/12 that of Asian and White America.
The numbers don't stop there...
Here's the US population, with African-Americans comprising about 36 million, just under 13%. Of that 1.9 million businesses are African-American owned. Of that only 109 thousand even have employees, and of that number only 14 thousand have revenue of over $1 million a year. (Note: Add "ONLY" to slides or doesn't come across). To put this deficiency into perspective on a national scale, while venture-backed businesses as a whole comprise over 20% of the nation’s GDP, black-owned businesses contribute less than 1% -- an alarming fragment when considering the original 13% of population. (Note: Maybe go back to original 13% and shrink to under 5% and have new title that reads: "Productivity Crisis.")
The implications are growing and the clock is ticking.
In America, since 1980, all net new job growth is attributed to companies five-years-old and younger. In any given year, the top-performing 1% of new firms, generate a staggering 40% of all new job creation. These so-called gazelles, or high-growth companies, are the backbone to creating job growth and wealth. And they are fueled by the single most important component of all: risk venture capital investing.
Today in the US, there are over 500 venture capital groups in White America. There is only 1 in Black America.
In the face of the new economy, this is a frightening picture. But it doesn't have to be. The America 21 project at Rutgers is committed to changing these numbers and helping the country thrive.
III. THE SOLUTION
The key to solving these problems rests on three pillars that have become the project's foundation: STEM education for workforce development; high-growth entrepreneurship for job growth; and capital -- access to risk capital and capital formation.
By replicating the Rutgers Forum in 4 different cities, the project's 2012 National Campaign will begin planting seeds of urban economic development strategically across the country.
Each seed will establish nodes aimed at developing: Urban Founders to orchestrate networking, education, workshops, and mentoring resources to aid in the development of entrepreneurs and deal flow; and Urban Funders to invest in a National Urban Innovation Fund and develop an active regional angel investment group.
By spreading awareness, planting resource seeds, and nurturing growth both Online and Offline, each ‘seed’ node will ultimately emerge into a “Hub of Innovation" and 21st-Century Innovation Ecosystem.
A solution is possible, and the America 21 Project at Rutgers is paving the way.
“The discussions here have been quite robust, about how to connect hi-tech black entrepreneurs with black investors and black capital. The ultimate goal is to create...
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