A New Digital Marketplace Is Here to Help You Support Minority- and Women-Owned Businesses

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Where you buy things and from whom is a political act, and more businesses and consumers than ever are reconsidering where their spending dollars are going. Nobody understands this better than Charlestown-based public relations executive Colette Phillips, long known as a champion of women- and minority-owned businesses in New England—and this week, Phillips proposed a new solution.

Earlier this week Phillips officially launched GK Market, a digital marketplace for local diverse and inclusive businesses. It’s an extension of cross-cultural diverse business networking group (and Best of Boston 2020 winner) Get Konnected!

An “equity enhancing resource,” as Phillips calls it, GK Market is a multicultural marketplace bringing together buyers and sellers—and it is absolutely free to use. Designed by MassChallenge Accelerator alumni Qwally, the easy-to-use interface allows users to search Boston-area businesses using a number of different filters. Whether looking for a media consultant or a construction company, it has never been easier to find Black-owned, LGBT-owned, or women-owned businesses in the Bay State.

GK Market arrives at a time not only when social justice is front-of-mind, but also when small businesses face increasingly novel and difficult challenges because of COVID-19. Phillips hopes that this free marketplace will become a lifeline of sorts for small businesses, especially considering that many of Boston’s Black-owned businesses lack websites, marketing budgets, and the means to survive this seemingly endless pandemic.

“Considering the current implications of COVID-19, the GK Market will provide professionals with a safe way to network and collaborate,” says Phillips.

Phillips’ goal for GK Market is that it becomes the state’s single largest repository of minority- and women-owned enterprises. “Our hope is that the GK Market will allow those companies to become more accessible,” she says. “Additionally, it will remove the phrase, ‘I can’t find any minority businesses,’ from the lexicon.”