Lanny Smith's Actively Black is putting money into Black communities, something that big companies are not doing.
Lanny Smith created Actively Black to address the shortcomings of larger companies in promoting Black representation and empowerment.
March 6th 2023.
Following the death of George Floyd at the hands of four Minnesota police officers, companies and corporations promised to help improve the situation for Black people, but three years on, not much has changed. This led former professional basketball player Lanny Smith to create his sportswear company, Actively Black, in 2020. The company is now reportedly worth $30 million and brought in $5.6 million last year, with 10% of the revenue being reinvested into organizations that support social justice, mental health, and physical health within Black communities. Smith told CNBC Make It that IMAGETAGGOESHERE "a lot of these sports apparel brands have profited off of Black talent, yet hadn't adequately reinvested back into the Black community". As such, the company has donated to programs such as the Dr. Huey P. Newton Foundation, The Liberation Fund, Black Kids Code, Our Own, and Families United, with the aim of having a real impact when the company reaches multibillion-dollar status. Additionally, Smith highlighted the importance of giving Black creators opportunities they would not get elsewhere.