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Black Women Claiming Their Share in Beauty Supply Store Ownership

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Black-Beauty-SupplyBy Bandana Babu

This year, The Beauty Supply Entrepreneurship Conference will be held on March 28-29 in Los Angeles, California.
The conference was initially started by the Atlanta-based Beauty Supply Institute in 2010 with the aim of helping eager store owners enter into the beauty supply business. The event opens the door for many Black women to break into an industry that they are typically left out of.

At present, the beauty retail business is proving itself to be a strong sector. Looking at statistics, the ethnic beauty supply business is worth $15 billion, with approximately 13,000 retail outlets across America. On average, a beauty shop customer visits an OTC (over-the-counter) 22 times per year, according to research by Alberto Culver.

Beauty Business magazine stated that even during the toughest recession years (between 2007 and 2009), the beauty industry witnessed growth of 12 percent.

Even though the business has made many manufacturers, distributors and retailers wealthy, there are still very few Black retail owners.

Aron Ranen, a Jewish filmmaker released a documentary which disclosed that less than 3 percent of beauty retail outlets are Black-owned, although they are 96 percent of the customer base in the industry.

This inequality is prompting more and more Black women to join the beauty retail business, and they are getting immense help from the Beauty Supply Institute!

The company, which has around 70 stores, is said to have generated heavy revenue, almost over $10,000,000 since 2007. Professor Devin Robinson, the founder of the company, is a 3-time store owner who first opened shop in 2005.

Robinson described the moment when he first made the decision to become a store owner. It began with an uncomfortable experience at someone else’s store.

“It was my first time shopping at that store, so the owner didn’t know me and I was browsing the aisles for a while seeking out a large amount of items. He didn’t like it. It spooked him. He became suspicious, then volatile and then straight violent. I left in peace but that day, I developed a plan to start my own.”

And since then, there has been no turning back for him or for people he has helped to get established in the beauty business.

The conference helps aspiring people to understand the basics of the industry and trains them to safeguard themselves against its perils.

“My son and I decided to open a store after having put in many years in at Corporate America. I couldn’t have done this without the help of Beauty Supply Institute,” Amanda Mickens, an Alabama store owner, says in praise.

This year, the venue of the conference is set at Renaissance Los Angeles Airport Hotel. Seating is limited. For any registration information, visit



  1. candle

    February 14, 2015 at 11:23 am

    Most awesome things I have read in a while…go people! Keep it moving

  2. Jeffery

    February 14, 2015 at 10:14 pm


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