ESSENCE Is Fully Black Owned Again!
If you haven’t heard the news yet, here is a brief update. The multi-faceted media company, Essence Communications Inc. is fully black owned again after nearly two decades!!
Richelieu Dennis, the founder of Essence Ventures, an independent African-American owned company focused on merging content, community, and commerce to meet the evolving cultural and lifestyle needs of women of color and Sundial brands, a manufacturer of hair and skin products like SheaMoisture and Nubian Heritage, brought the company from Time Inc. Richelieu says he brought the company to “serve and empower women of color.” He also states, “As importantly, we are excited to be able to return this culturally relevant and historically significant platform to ownership by the people and the consumers whom it serves and offers new opportunities for the women leading the business to also be partners in the business.”
Dennis says he plans on keeping the same, entirely black, all female executive team currently at ESSENCE including Michelle Ebanks, President of Essence Communications. “The strategic vision and leadership that Michelle has provided to ESSENCE over the years have been exemplary, and we are thrilled to work with her and her talented team to provide the necessary resources and support to continue to grow the engagement and influence of the ESSENCE brand and transform this business,” said Richelieu Dennis.
The executive team at Essence will have co-ownership in the business.
“This acquisition of ESSENCE represents the beginning of an exciting transformation of our iconic brand as it evolves to serve the needs and interests of multigenerational Black women around the world in an even more elevated and comprehensive way across print, digital, e-commerce and experiential platforms,” said Ebanks. “In addition, it represents a critical recognition, centering and elevation of the Black women running the business from solely a leadership position to a co-ownership position.”
According to Essence.com, and Time Inc’s. President & CEO Rich Battista, Michelle’s leadership, has advanced Time’s business. "The Essence team has extended the brand’s reach and influence across multiple platforms, solidifying its position as the premier destination for African-American women serving an audience of 16.3 million," Battista said.
The executive team at ESSENCE deserves to be on a cover of a magazine for a change. They work hard to maintain the essence of, what ESSENCE is; they are the essence of, what ESSENCE is!!!
This deal is timely as black women's influence is intensifying, says Ebanks. "From her influence in politics and at the polls, mandate for social justice, and demand for economic inclusion to her impact on beauty culture, leadership in equal rights efforts, and catalyzation of community empowerment, she is at the forefront, driving the cultural phenomena that are positively changing the world. "Essence will continue to lead that charge with, for and beside her as the unparalleled platform for her voice.”
We are so excited for Essence and what more they have to come!! Congratulations!!