The weekend of November 18-20, the Muhammad Study Group of Montreal and members of the LOC joined forces with visionary Black economic activist Kerlande Mibel and successful Black entrepreneur Frantz Saintellemy to organize the city’s first edition of the International Black Economic Forum.
The forum brought together more than 50 high profile business entrepreneurs, MBAs, CEOs, Project Management experts coming from all parts of Canada, Europe, the Caribbean and the United States. This cadre of skilled professionals offered training and coaching to Montreal’s Black Community in areas such as business, real estate acquisition and financial investment techniques.
The key theme and hashtag of the entire conference was #BlackWealthMatters. The rally cry heard all weekend was: “I AM BLACK AND I CREATE WEALTH!”
Among the business luminaries present at the forum was Dr. Orelien Jean, CEO and President of SciMetrika who has been honored as one of Inc. Magazine’s Top 10 BlackEntrepreneurs (2010 + 2011) and one of the top 50 African-Americans in science and technology by Black Money.
The program offered participants two training pathways to choose from.
Path 1 was the Master Class for those who needed professional coaching and training for their personal business projects. Participants could select from one of five class themes, namely:
1-The Lean startup to growth! (Head coach: Dr Jean Orélien, CEO of Scimetrika),
2-Up the corporate ladder! (Head coach: Ben Marc Diendéré, Senior vice-president Communications, public affairs, branding – The Federated Coop)
3-Home buying 101 & build your real estate portfolio (Head coach: Thierry Lindor, President of REMAX Griffintown)
4-Investing: building your own diversified portfolio 101 (Head coach: Jean David Tremblay-Frenette, Director, Economics, Strategy & Tactical Asset Allocation, Alberta Investment Management Corporation (AIMCo)
5-Mini-MBA (Head Coach: Komlan Sedzro, Director of the Finance Department, École des sciences de la gestion)
The second path was the Economic Labs, for those interested in the Human-centered design approach to strategic thinking and planning. This path was excellent for all the social innovators and social entrepreneurs looking to create prosperous ecosystems within Black communities. The labs focused on nine subjects divided into five poles aimed at solving large-scale community problems.
Pole 1 – Foundations
• Innovation in Education
• Reinforce our
• Supporting single
Pole 2 – Building influence
• Create networks of
• Focus on media
Pole 3 – Access to property
• Facilitate access to property in the process of Black empowerment
Pole 4 – Science and Technology
• Promoting science and green technology
Pole 5 – Entrepreneurship
• Access to public procurement and international market
On day 3 (Sunday) participants of the Labs were asked to present their various solutions and initiatives for short- to long-term action in the community.
The Forum also served as a launching pad for important Black Economic initiatives. Young Haitian real estate entrepreneur, Thierry Lindor, made a key announcement. He presented Diaspora Acquisition Fund (DAF).
The aim of this new fund will be to help Black Communities gain access to both personal and commercial real estate within their own communities. As such, a stated objective of this fund will be to fight the process of gentrification happening in Black neighborhoods like Little Burgundy and Montreal-Nord.
Other highlights of the weekend were keynote addresses by popular activist Maggie Anderson from Chicago, author of Our Black Year.
Another powerful keynote address was delivered earlier by Brother Jesse Muhammad (live via Skype), Head of the Farrakhan Twitter Army, who presented statistics from the 2015 Economic Boycott, while encouraging Black Economic Empowerment principles taught by the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan.
Members of the Muhammad Study Group of Montreal also taught in Master Classes, namely Brother Gerson X (Real Estate) and student Coordinator Brother Roger A. Muhammad (Digital Marketing, E-Commerce).
The Forum plans to expand to other cities and countries in the near future and promotes the signature of a document called the Economic Alliance, written by Dr. Stephanie Melyon-Renette and others, which promotes the principles of independent Black Wealth Creation for all Black Communities worldwide.
This forum and document aligns perfectly with the vision of the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan for economic empowerment and the need for the talented tenth to come together for a programmatic thrust to lift the masses of our people in need.
You can sign the Economic Alliance by visiting http://www.fein-ibef.com/