Though it’s no secret that startup culture is bustling with white men in Silicon Valley, mobile app Around the Way is shaking things up. Founded by three African-Americans in Washington, D.C.—Janine Hausif, Eric Hamilton and Sian Morson—the app is for those who want to buy Black.
“Buying Black” is a term probably unknown to most in Silicon Valley. It refers to an action by people who want to support African-American owned, operated and staffed establishments through purchasing their services exclusively.
Far more than hair salons and barbershops, Black-owned businesses are often the cornerstone establishments of their communities. Unfortunately, with the likes of Walmart and Target pushing out mom-and-pop type locations, many minority-owned locations fade into the annals of a city’s history. The app serves to make it easier for people to buy Black, and therefore continue to support their community businesses.
The app uses a phone’s GPS to locate Black-owned businesses that have registered with the free service. From auto repair to doctors, restaurants to churches, the app is a one-stop for anyone interested in businesses that are at least 51 percent African-American owned and employed.