Running a successful business owner in America is challenging for the average company. It's even more difficult when you live in smaller communities that have less disposable capital available within the region.

Given these factors, when a major multi-million dollar sports franchise teams up with local government to give small businesses a boost, you should pay attention, and that's exactly what's happening with the new New Diversity Shop at KeyBank Center.

The Erie County Level Up program is teaming up with the Buffalo Bills and the Buffalo Sabres to bring eight black-owned retailers in Western New York inside the KeyBank Center and sell their products during various Sabres home games inside the KeyBank Center during February and March.

The Level Up Initiative was created to ensure all small businesses across Erie County have access to the resources, and corporate level relationships that will enable them to grow. The Diversity Shop at KeyBank Center is another example of how to create new opportunities for our marginalized small business owners. If we want our small business community to be prepared for the new stadium opportunities created in the Community Benefits Agreement, then we need programs like Level Up that give small businesses access to the corporate world.
-April N.M. Baskin, Chairwoman of the Erie County Legislature

Starting this month, the Diversity Shop will be given space on the 100-level concourse inside the KeyBank Center for two businesses each game. One company will be on the east wing concourse, while the other will be on the west wing concourse.

Read More: Erie County Has A New Program To Help Small Businesses

Over the four weeks this new program is running, these eight businesses will be highlighted:

  • Monday, February 12th - Najah Corp. & Skincare Essentials By Jill
  • Sunday, February 25th - Elle James Decor & Black Monarchy
  • Sunday, March 3rd - Melanin Skyn Co. & Skinny Wick Candle Co.
  • Tuesday, March 12th - Nikki’s Chocolates WNY & Charm Handmade Jewelry

Not only will these businesses be allowed to showcase their products to thousands of Sabres fans, they will also receive a $1,000 business grant from Erie County.

Erie County Level Up / Ari Parsons PR
Erie County Level Up / Ari Parsons PR

More information about the Erie County Level Up Program here.

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