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BY Abu Mubarik, 1:10pm April 03, 2024,

Charlotte mall struggling for years now thriving after welcoming Black-owned businesses

Photo credit: WCNC

Northlake Mall in Charlotte is embracing Black-owned businesses after struggling for years due to a combination of finance and rising crime. The mall is now becoming a hub for Charlotte-owned businesses to get a fresh start, according to WCNC.

Officials from the Northlake Mall have announced that 19 businesses, or 17% of the total businesses at the mall, are now owned by Black individuals.

Giving a chance for black business owners to operate there is changing the face of business in the mall for the better, the business owners said. One of them is Danyell Butler, whose journey to owning a business has been difficult, but now living his dream. A couple of years ago, he was homeless and spent most of the nights sleeping in a car.

“A lot of the negative that you have heard or known has been silenced,” Butler, the co-owner of Modified Kicks, said. “If we go back just a couple of years, I was homeless, sleeping in a car,” Butler said.

After he got his hands on some paint and brushes, Butler was able to open his own store, Modified Kicks. His consumers get a unique experience while he expresses his creativity through his clothing and footwear designs.

“To reach the level we have now, it’s kind of unreal,” Butler said. “It is becoming more of a black mecca. It’s becoming a smorgasbord of companies that have unique styles.”

Another black business owner is LaToya Evans, who is the owner of Charlotte’s Nails. She saw an opportunity at the mall, and in November, she opened Charlotte’s Nails.

“As we build community in Northlake, I don’t think that it’s a coincidence that [with] the black-owned businesses and locally owned businesses that you have in the retail space, the violence has gone down tremendously,” Evans said. “Because part of that is, that’s your neighbor, your family, your brother, your cousin.”

She claimed that the culture is shifting as a result of investments in Charlotte businesses. Additionally, she mentioned that it’s giving people the chance to follow their passions and build riches that will last for generations.

“Being able to have more black-owned businesses isn’t just great for the economy within the black community; it’s great for the local economy,” Evans said. “It’s great for our city to be able to say that anyone can come here, and anyone can thrive.”

Small businesses are being used to bring back the love for shopping malls throughout the U.S. as internet shopping and Covid helped lead to the fall of brick-and-mortar stores, WCNC reported.

Northlake has so far welcomed not only Charlotte’s Nails but also other businesses like 3Six92, Vixen Ready Art Factory, D. Williams Suits, and Destination Sweets. “Our shoppers will find something special for every occasion,” Adam Kamlet, the general manager of Northlake Mall, said of the various businesses at the Charlotte shopping mall.

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: April 3, 2024


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