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Entrepreneurs looking for practical resources and expert guidance on how to start and grow profitable enterprises can now tap into the Black Enterprise Small Business University, or SBU. Powered by Dell Inc., the world’s No. 3 supplier of PCs and provider of technology business solutions, SBU is a free eight-week online video course. Topics include establishing a brand, hiring a solid team, raising capital, creating marketing buzz, attracting new customers, and using the best tools and gadgets for your business.
The program also provides entrepreneurs who register online at dev.blackenterprise.com/sbu a chance to win more than $50,000 in prizes. SBU includes customized gamification features that allow registrants to gain points for participating and to win a grand prize package that includes $5,000 in cash, a $10,000 Dell office setup, a free one-on-one consultation with a small business development expert, a profile in Black Enterprise magazine, and a one-year gift subscription. A runner-up prize consists of a $6,000 Dell office setup, a free one-on-one consultation with a small business development expert, a profile on BlackEnterprise.com, and a one-year gift subscription to Black Enterprise magazine.
Launched in April, SBU aims at assisting entrepreneurs in various stages of business development, including part-time entrepreneurs, business startups, and established enterprises. Original tutorials feature a team of rotating business, marketing, and technology experts. Among SBUs all-stars are author and SmallBizLady Melinda F. Emerson; Buzz Marketing Group founder and CEO Tina Wells; Young Entrepreneurs Council founder Scott Gerber; The Money Coach and personal finance author Lynnette Khalfani-Cox; SocialPeople.tv founder James Andrews; and digital lifestyle guru Mario Armstrong.
“At Dell, we continue to build on our own entrepreneurial DNA through supporting programs that help small businesses and the startup community innovate and succeed,” says featured SBU expert, Mel Parker, vice president and general manager of Dell consumer and small office. “By partnering with Black Enterprise on the Small Business University, entrepreneurs have access to actionable advice on business and technology strategies that can move their business forward.”
In addition to guest advisers, members of the Black Enterprise editorial team are available across all social media platforms including Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, Google+, and Pinterest to connect directly with participants, answer questions, and provide additional resources. “The path to entrepreneurship can be a difficult one to navigate, and many get lost along the way,” says Black Enterprise President & CEO Earl “Butch” Graves Jr. “With the support of Dell, a company that has set the bar in helping small business excel through innovative and practical technology solutions, services, and support, we’re able to share the vital lessons of our Small Business University by way of a virtual classroom.”