Inclusive Economy | January 27, 2023

ImpactAlpha Deal Spotlight: Black-worker ownership

Roodgally Senatus
ImpactAlpha Editor

Roodgally Senatus

ImpactAlpha, January 27 — With more than half of business owners in the U.S. over 55 years old, there’s a “silver tsunami” of businesses for sale. Most of them don’t have a succession plan. An increasingly viable option: Transfer ownership to employees.

Washington, D.C.-based Apis & Heritage Capital Partners this week closed a $58.1 million fund to help small and mid-sized businesses with large workforces of color transition to employee ownership.

The nearly 20 million Black workers make up roughly 12% of the American workforce. Black business ownership can help bridge the racial wealth gap and advance economic mobility. Black Americans aged 62-70 have a median net worth of $46,200 compared to $331,700 for white Americans, says the Center for Global Policy Solutions. Apis & Heritage says worker-owners in its portfolio can accrue $70,000 to $120,000 in retirement savings.

Employee ownership deals

Apis & Heritage’s employee-led buyout model is helping retiring business owners transfer ownership to employees at fair market prices. The Black-led firm has helped two firms, Denver-based Apex Plumbing and El Paso, Tex.-based Accent Landscaping Contractors, transfer 100% ownership to employees.  The companies employ a total of 150 workers.