Byron Allen’s media group and Verizon are partnering to host a Black-owned media summit.
At the same time, Verizon is also pledging to increase spend in Black-owned media companies as part of its new responsible marketing action plan. The company said it would spend at least 2% of its ad budget with Black-owned media.
The event will take place in May, around the same time as media giants traditionally host their upfront events as they look to secure ad commitments for the fall.
“I’m very proud of Verizon, one of the largest advertisers in the world, coming to the table to make sure we have real economic inclusion for Black-owned media,” Allen, founder, chairman and CEO of Allen Media Group, said in a statement. “The biggest trade deficit in our nation is the trade deficit between corporate America and Black America, and we must close that gap immediately.”
Allen has been leading a group of Black media executives calling for brands and agencies to shift more ad dollars to Black-owned media. Last week the group took out full-page newspaper ads calling out General Motors CEO Mary Barra for ignoring requests to meet with Black-owned media owners. The ads resulted in GM setting up multiple meetings with the group and pledging to allocate 4% of its U.S. advertising spend on Black-owned media companies next year, and 8% by 2025.
The goal of the summit is to provide Black-owned media companies with resources to help enable long-term growth, John Nitti, chief media officer, Verizon, said in a statement.