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Carter Malone Group hits 10-year mark in stride

CMG-1-600Roby S. Williams has seen businesses come and go. Ninety percent of them are start-ups that fail to sustain themselves the first couple of years in the marketplace, said Williams, president of the Black Business Association of Memphis, a non-profit network of African-American entrepreneurs, businesses and organizations.

Not all businesses fall by the wayside. One of them – The Carter Malone Group, LLC, a public relations, marketing and advertising firm – beat the odds and celebrated its 10th anniversary on June 21.

More than 150 celebrants crowded the Calliope Room in Downtown Memphis and paid tribute to the firm's president and CEO, Deidre Malone. The venue was in close proximity to where Malone had opened her first office.

  • Written by Wiley Henry

Need flexibility? Universal life insurance may be the answer

CharlesSimsJr-160Universal life insurance was developed in the late 1970s to overcome some of the disadvantages associated with term and whole life insurance. As with other types of life insurance, you pay regular premiums to your insurance company, in exchange for which the insurance company will pay a specific benefit to your beneficiaries upon your death.

As with whole life insurance, a portion of each payment goes to the insurance company to pay for the pure cost of insurance. The remainder is invested in the company's general investment portfolio, with the potential to build cash value.

Most universal life policies pay a minimum guaranteed rate of return. Any returns above the guaranteed minimum vary with the performance of the insurance company's portfolio. The policyholder has no control over how these funds are invested; funds are managed by the insurance company's professional portfolio managers.

Independent Style Market opens in the Broad Ave. Arts District

ISM-600"A Creative Entrepreneurial Community Center". . . that's how Tonya Tate, Director of Indie Style Market styles the new venture designed to promote the economic opportunities of creative entrepreneurism and promote the indie product design community of the Mid-South.

Consumer product design is a broad field that covers everything from apparel and accessories to home goods and furniture. The mid-south is known for our food, music, and art but we also have a lot to offer in terms of unique products that you use every day and Indie Style Market (ISM) exists to tell the story of these products and their makers to the world.

In addition to retail storefront from which to sell their products, ISM offers indie designers workshops to help them with various aspects of running a creative product business such as taking Quality Product Photos, Launching an Etsy shop, and Marketing your brand using Social Media.

What does it take to win in the music business these days?

CarleeMcCullough-160ON OUR WAY TO WEALTHY: It is pretty common knowledge that the music industry has morphed since the days of Motown. While the model has changed from just ten years ago, the number of artists eager to enter the business has not declined over time. New technology for producing beats allows almost anyone to make a record, thereby diluting and congesting the field. So the dedicated have to distinguish themselves from the pack. Do you ever wonder how some folks made it big in the business with "little" talent, while those that sing like Whitney Houston never make it? Do you have what it takes to make it in the business? Ask yourself a series of questions: Is this my passion? Can I make a living with music? Do I want this to be my business? If the answer is yes, then you have to approach this industry as a business.

Whether a win in the music business is signing to a major deal, signing to an independent label, or starting your own label, the foundation to accomplish either is the same. There are a number of factors that come into play. Passion, hustle, timing, relationships, money, and knowledge are a few of the factors that begin to separate the pack.

Young entrepreneurs are keeping up the good work

entrepreneurs-1-600Summer is just around the corner and for the sister-and-brother team of Zaadia and Zayrion Harris, and their cousin, Marliesha Malone, it's time to push forward as young entrepreneurs.

Actually, the trio – Zaadia, 17, Zayrion, 16, and 21-year-old Marliesha – is already at work. Last Sunday (June 9), they debuted their Kustom Kosher's spring/summer collection at a launch party at Underwraps Salon, 7981 Dexter Rd. #106 in Cordova.

Determination, creativity and goals form the foundation of what they are building on. And they've got supporters.

Disability income insurance: Do you need it?

disability-insurance-250MONEY MATTERS: One might assume that most serious disabilities result from a sudden, unlucky accident. Surprisingly, 90 percent of all disability claims are for common health conditions such as cancer and back problems.

Disability insurance replaces a portion of lost income, up to policy limits, if a debilitating injury or chronic illness prevents a breadwinner from working. This type of protection can provide a lifeline for people who may otherwise be unable to support their families, but it can be just as critical for older and/or affluent workers during their peak earning years.

2 groups pursue powerhouse status for Memphis music

CarleeMcCullough-160ON OUR WAY TO WEALTHY: African-American Music Appreciation Month is in full stride, as are the Memphis Music Foundation and Consortium Memphis Music Town – two organizations committed to Memphis' reemergence as a music-industry powerhouse.

The Memphis Music Foundation (MMF) has drawn a bead on leveling the playing field for Memphis artists in the music business, with myriad programs designed to that end. And The Consortium Memphis Music Town, aka The Consortium MMT, is a national music mentorship non-profit.


The Memphis Music Foundation (www.memphismeansmusic.com) has myriad programs designed to aid Memphis artists. Let's take a peek.

Businesses face health-care decisions

CharlesSimsJr-160MONEY MATTERS: Although the Affordable Care Act does not require companies to provide employee health insurance, business owners may want to pay special attention to the law's tax implications.

Large employers that do not offer workers a minimum level of essential health coverage could be hit with costly penalties. Meanwhile, financial incentives may be available to certain small employers that choose to provide employee health coverage.

For many businesses, the presence of certain staffing thresholds may also influence hiring decisions.