The Journal Gazette
Thursday, April 08, 2021 1:00 am

Racial equity vow made

ANNE D'INNOCENZIO | Associated Press

NEW YORK – Target will spend a total of more than $2 billion at Black-owned businesses by 2025 as part of its effort to advance racial equity. That's a significant increase, according to Target, though it declined to be more specific Wednesday.

The Minneapolis retailer will add a broad spectrum of products from more than 500 Black-owned businesses and will increase its spending at more Black-owned companies, from marketing to construction. It will also introduce new resources, such as a dedicated team to help Black-owned suppliers scale their businesses to work with mass chains.

Target and other corporations have been expanding ties with Black-owned suppliers, rethinking marketing and embracing other initiatives in the aftermath of George Floyd's death last summer, which led to protests nationwide against policy brutality and racial inequity.

“Ultimately, Target is creating the pipeline that will fundamentally change how retailers must handle new brands coming into their stores,” said Kendra Bracken-Ferguson, a Black digital marketing and brand development specialist in beauty and wellness who has experience pitching Black-owned brands to Target and other stores.

More than 20 companies, including Sephora, Gap and Macy's, have signed on to a nationwide campaign called 15 Percent Pledge, which aims to have companies commit to at least 15% of their products on their shelves from Black-owned businesses – in line with the U.S. Black population. Target's commitment is unaffiliated with that campaign.

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