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‘Let’s start banking on black content’

PANEL: Melanie Melanie Eusebe, Jimmy Akinbola, Geoffrey Williams plus more

AS BRANDS like Netflix continue to increase their offering of black stories and draw substantial non-black viewership for these shows (Forbes, 2018), how can UK businesses lead the pack and start banking on black content? What are the benefits of telling black stories and how do they influence cultural change?

On Monday (Mar 18), the Black British Business Awards (BBBAwards) discussed those very issues at their 2019 Nomination Launch, held at Thomson Reuter’s London Headquarters in Canary Wharf.

A panel discussion was held by Melanie Eusebe and joined by individuals who are recognised as game changers within and beyond their companies, including award-winning actor Jimmy Akingbola producer and co-founder of the TriForce Creative Network and many more.

During the panel discussion on black content, Jimmy Akingbola commented on the importance of having this conversation. He said: “The conversation we have raised tonight is such an important one, as there is no such thing as a single black narrative and finally more stories are being heard.

“As we look further into the future for young entrepreneurs, it is imperative that they see and hear black individuals breaking the glass ceiling and leading in the creative sector.”

Geoffrey Williams, director/global head of diversity & inclusion at Thomson Reuters added: “Effective storytelling is a powerful way to change minds and hearts, enabling society to clearly see the journeys of those around us. In the UK, the black community has a unique story to tell. Giving life to their stories and compelling us to think differently, is key to the UK’s success.”

Melanie Eusebe, chair and co-founder of the Black British Business Awards said the celebrated award ceremony “wholeheartedly” throws their support behind black talent. “The significance of black narrative and how it is represented in today’s media is something the Black British Business Awards wholeheartedly throw their support behind.

“To have partnered with a powerhouse such as Thomson Reuters will enable a wider conversation around the diverse spectrum of talent whilst championing black excellence and shattering stereotypes.”

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