What is an “Afropolitan” business?
In 2005 Taiye Selasi wrote the article “Bye-Bye Barbar” where she coined the term “Afropolitan”.
My life changed after learning that term.
As a Kenyan born, British, and American bred woman, I realized that finally there was a word to describe my third culture experience and also my hopes for how I engage with the world. And I didn’t have to choose one or the other but could hold both my rich African heritage with my American and British upbringing. Tayie notes in her article:
“Ultimately, the Afropolitan must form an identity along at least three dimensions: national, racial, cultural – with subtle tensions in between.”
A way of viewing the increasingly interconnected world of the African diaspora. I started my business The Afropolitan Shop and soon realized that there was a perception that “Afropolitan” meant a sort of neo-colonization of Africa. A one-way engagement that only distributes culture and finances from Western countries to Africa.
This couldn’t be further from the truth.
I see an Afropolitan brand as one that originates from someone of African descent anywhere on the globe. That frees the term from being tied to any one particular region.
You can be an Afropolitan with an Afropolitan brand selling in China, Chile or Chad! The African diaspora, estimated to be about 1.3 billion people worldwide (that’s 1 out of every 5 people! ) is by no means a monolith, but a community connected by its common starting place: Africa.
Africa is Rich
Eric Osiakwan in his TEDx Berkeley talk, coined an insightful term “KINGS” of African economy which is an acronym for Kenya, Ivory Coast, Ghana Nigeria, and South Africa. If you are from one of these countries you are specially positioned to lead the African economic boom.
But even if you’re not from one of these countries, but still reside in Africa, there is hope.
One of the best ways for Africans to start a profitable business is to do so online. This will exponentially grow your audience from your neighborhood or city to the world.
I can’t stress that enough.
There are people all over the world searching for products and services every day that are available in Africa. Why not sell to them?
The three most revenue-generating ways to start selling to the global market are:
- Stat an online shop and sell physical products
- Sell digital products such as an ebook, online course or videos
- Start an African online coaching business and access global clients
So whether you’re from Angola or Zimbabwe–you can get started creating generational wealth that will stay in Africa and build your legacy.
African Americans in the Diaspora
The next biggest community of Africans are in the United States. When it comes to business, black women in the US are the fastest growing group of business owners! That’s quite a feat in the home of capitalism. Whether they are selling goods or services, intellectual property or influence, the black community in the US is continuing to demand curated and catered products particular to their needs.
I dive deeper into this in my online course specifically made for black entrepreneurs who want to make money online and reach a worldwide audience. Learn the method that’s helping millions to make money online.
This is where an Afropolitan business comes in.
From this point of commonality, namely being of African descent, come shared needs that we have yet to tap into. These skills and resources are traded in the global market at a premium value.
There is no reason why more Afropolitan focused business can’t exist to meet this demand. For what they’re worth and more.