Strength in Numbers, April 2017

Strength in Numbers, April 2017

Planning Independents Week 2017

The 14th annual Independents Week celebrates the entrepreneurial spirit and freedom our local businesses embody and provides a platform to give your group or business a fresh seasonal hook to engage the media and public alike. We make it easy for you to seize the opportunity by providing a huge library of local activity examples with organizing advice and free templates for posters, web banners, print ads and over-the-street banners. See the introduction and resource index.

Webinar: Transforming the Small Business Lending Process
May 23, 2017 at 4 p.m. EDT
Philadelphia has introduced a powerful innovation to ease the loan-seeking process for small businesses. Join Jonathan Snyder from the Philadelphia Capital Consortium to learn more about this new program and how you might replicate it to improve funding opportunities for your local businesses. RSVP to [email protected] for webinar login details.

Where Are All the Black-owned Businesses?
Black-owned businesses are struggling under the weight of corporate consolidation in traditionally strong trades and are being forced to sell out, reducing the influence, number and wealth creation of Black entrepreneurs. This thorough story in the Washington Monthly explores the problem while a new report by the Association for Enterprise Opportunity examines the obstacles and explores actions to enhance entrepreneurial opportunity.

NY Times’ Attack on Main Street — and Many Rebuttals
The NY Times ran a prominent essay dismissing Main Streets and independent businesses as inefficient relics and ran several responses (including AMIBA’s) that debunked some of the many absurd claims in the piece.

The Localization Movement Grows, Diversifies
We’re excited to welcome three new AMIBA affiliates this month, representing areas ranging from rural Native American communities of a few hundred people to the U.S. capital!

Think Local First DC, Washington, D.C.
Fort Belknap Economic Development Committee, Ft. Belknap Reservation, MT
Mena’s Downtown Partners, Mena, AR

We welcome InMotion Hosting as AMIBA’s newest sponsor (and new website host). The company is offering AMIBA affiliates and members 50% off regular hosting plans via this link!

Big thanks to Cohen Milstein and for their renewed support, helping us keep increasing support for communities and their independent businesses.

Trouble Brewing?
Beer brewing is one of few business realms where independents have steadily gained market share from corporate giants, but one of craft brewing’s modern pioneers warns that corporate mergers threaten the future of the trade.

Fly Local?
Dane Buy Local’s (Madison, WI) new partners include their regional airport, which launched a “Fly Local” campaign encouraging residents to fly out of the local airport rather than driving extra hours to larger cities to fly. We encourage local Alliances to think creatively in building their membership and partnerships. Members of AMIBA affiliates include professional sports teams, hospitals, museums and more.

The Hidden Monopolies That Raise Drug Prices
In the murky pharmaceutical world, pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) are the hidden players largely responsible for exorbitant drug pricing. They’re some of the most profitable corporations you’ve never heard of – and they’re undermining independent pharmacies.

Celebrate Indie Music & Book Stores

Help spread the buzz for Record Store Day (Saturday, April 22) and Indie Bookstore Day (U.S.) / Authors for Indies Day (Canada) (Saturday, April 29). Check out the event websites (linked above) as well as shareable social media graphics by AMIBA for each.

Local Organizing Profiles

Local First Lexington (KY) builds momentum from the ground up by mobilizing business owners and local community members to pledge shopping local.

Buy Local Greater Kalamazoo cultivates strong community partnerships with Kalamazoo Wings hockey team and many others to build a base for their localization work.

Is Your Local Gov’t Wasting Your Tax Dollars Sourcing from Amazon?
Bad: your local government buying paper on instead of walking to a local merchant. Inexcusable: overpaying by nearly 50% in the process. ILSR offers tips for ensuring this isn’t happening with your taxes (and we welcome you to contact us for help).

Checkoff Program Reform
Stand with your local, independent farmers and ranchers by supporting measure to help keep family farms from being forced to pay for programs that undermine their competitive advantage against huge corporations.

The Millbrook Business Association is the latest AMIBA affiliate to gain federal 501c6 tax-exempt status through AMIBA’s Group Exemption Program. This is an opt-in program for AMIBA affiliates that saves time, money, and allows them to gain this important status without paying $850 to the IRS! Find out more.

The Local Sustainable Economies Conference (June 7-9 in Boston) will both inspire and provide independent business advocates with actionable tools to directly improve your work in your community. AMIBA-affiliates receive $50 off the low conference rates (details here).

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