These Black CEOs Were Denied Business Loans (But Now They Run America's Fastest Growing Companies!)

Black CEOs that were denied business loans
Edwin Bosso, Anastasia Gentles, and Zawadi Bryant
Every year, Inc. magazine publishes a list of the 500 fastest-growing private companies in the nation. They also publish the Inc. 5000. In 2016, among all these fast-growing companies, only 73 of them were Black-owned and/or run by Black CEOs.
From that small number, many of them said that they experienced discrimination when they applied for business loans. But still, they were able to become successful!

Here are a few Black CEOs that were denied business loans from banks, but now they own some of the fastest growing companies in the country:

Edwin Bosso: founder of Houston's Myrtle Consulting Group struggled to get a loan, especially since his company is service-oriented which means no assets for collateral. They, too, finally got a bank to work with them, resulting in their revenue increasing 1,000 percent in the past three years. For more details, visit

Anastasia Gentles and Zawadi Bryant: founders of Sugar Landa Texas-based Nightlight Pediatric Urgent Care. They were turned down by other banks but eventually got the attention of a woman banker at Louisiana-based Whitney Bank. Since then, the business has grown with revenues increasing over 150 percent in the last three years, they have 5 locations, their staff has doubled. For more details, visit

Lori Burke: founder of LLB Enterprises, a Stafford, Virginia-based consulting firm, was denied loans by not only traditional banks but also the Small Business Administration. But a company called Kaleo Construction helped her out with a loan and had faith she would succeed. Not only did her company flourish, but it is also the fastest-growing company led by a black woman on the 2016 Inc. 5000. For more details, visit
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