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Disney World welcomes black entrepreneurs for supply chain accelerator education programme | Planet Attractions
     

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Disney World welcomes black entrepreneurs for supply chain accelerator education programme

Disney Parks has teamed up with the Russell Innovation Center for Entrepreneurs (RICE) to introduce a supply chain accelerator programme focused on transforming the businesses of diverse entrepreneurs






The Russell Innovation Center for Entrepreneurs (RICE) - an organisation created to support and inspire black entrepreneurs in business - has partnered with Disney to offer some of its members a peek behind the curtain at the world’s largest entertainment operator.

Disney executives invited RICE members to a special two-day event, hosted at Disney World with workshops, panel discussions and networking opportunities. During the two days, participants took part in sessions exploring storytelling, leadership, customer service and supplier diversity.

“Disney has a huge goal,” said Ralph Sagaille, director of supply diversity and sustainability at Disney. “When it comes to supplier diversity, we’ve committed by 2024 to spend US$1bn (€954m, £890m) dollars in direct spend with diverse companies.

“Disney found it really important to sponsor the RICE accelerator programme because we’re in a process of growth and we’re looking for entrepreneurs and small businesses to help us accelerate our growth for the next 15-20 years.”

The Supply Chain Accelerator Programme was operating in a pilot phase, with the scheme aimed at preparing and positioning diverse entrepreneurs and small businesses for long-term success. A total 35 companies owned by black entrepreneurs were included in the scheme, 66% of which are owned by women.

Among them were Zoe and Evana Oli, co-CEOs of Beautiful Curly Me - a company that 10-year-old Zoe founded with her mother when she was just six years old.

“I didn’t like my hair and I wished it was straight like my classmates,” said Zoe. “I found a need for black dolls that looked like me. When we went to the stores and couldn't find any, I decided I wanted to make my own business and do something about it.

About her two days as part of the accelerator programme, Zoe said she was inspired by Walt Disney’s mindset when he founded the company.

“I would say Walt’s vision has showed me the power of teamwork and the power of one dream,” she said.

“How he dreamed and his vision has made it possible for all the amazing things that Disney has done.

“Through teamwork and the community of everyone who is passionate about his vision, being able to step forward and make this shows me that if Walt can do it, I can too.”

Following its pilot year, the second year of the programme will expand to 50 participating businesses and an enhanced curriculum.

“We’re in the most magical place on earth with a room full of dreamers,” said Jay Bailey, president and CEO of RICE.

“What better place to see RICE and Disney come together to help individual business innovators, dreamers, understand how to tell their story and do business with one of the most reputable brands in the world.

“I witnessed a 10-year-old CEO walk through the gates of Disney for the first time in her life and experience the full magic - not just as a tourist but as a business owner - and seeing how she can take a little bit of the magic that she experienced and bring that back to her company.”

For more on RICE, click here


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Disney World welcomes black entrepreneurs for supply chain accelerator education programme | Planet Attractions
news

Disney World welcomes black entrepreneurs for supply chain accelerator education programme

Disney Parks has teamed up with the Russell Innovation Center for Entrepreneurs (RICE) to introduce a supply chain accelerator programme focused on transforming the businesses of diverse entrepreneurs





The Russell Innovation Center for Entrepreneurs (RICE) - an organisation created to support and inspire black entrepreneurs in business - has partnered with Disney to offer some of its members a peek behind the curtain at the world’s largest entertainment operator.

Disney executives invited RICE members to a special two-day event, hosted at Disney World with workshops, panel discussions and networking opportunities. During the two days, participants took part in sessions exploring storytelling, leadership, customer service and supplier diversity.

“Disney has a huge goal,” said Ralph Sagaille, director of supply diversity and sustainability at Disney. “When it comes to supplier diversity, we’ve committed by 2024 to spend US$1bn (€954m, £890m) dollars in direct spend with diverse companies.

“Disney found it really important to sponsor the RICE accelerator programme because we’re in a process of growth and we’re looking for entrepreneurs and small businesses to help us accelerate our growth for the next 15-20 years.”

The Supply Chain Accelerator Programme was operating in a pilot phase, with the scheme aimed at preparing and positioning diverse entrepreneurs and small businesses for long-term success. A total 35 companies owned by black entrepreneurs were included in the scheme, 66% of which are owned by women.

Among them were Zoe and Evana Oli, co-CEOs of Beautiful Curly Me - a company that 10-year-old Zoe founded with her mother when she was just six years old.

“I didn’t like my hair and I wished it was straight like my classmates,” said Zoe. “I found a need for black dolls that looked like me. When we went to the stores and couldn't find any, I decided I wanted to make my own business and do something about it.

About her two days as part of the accelerator programme, Zoe said she was inspired by Walt Disney’s mindset when he founded the company.

“I would say Walt’s vision has showed me the power of teamwork and the power of one dream,” she said.

“How he dreamed and his vision has made it possible for all the amazing things that Disney has done.

“Through teamwork and the community of everyone who is passionate about his vision, being able to step forward and make this shows me that if Walt can do it, I can too.”

Following its pilot year, the second year of the programme will expand to 50 participating businesses and an enhanced curriculum.

“We’re in the most magical place on earth with a room full of dreamers,” said Jay Bailey, president and CEO of RICE.

“What better place to see RICE and Disney come together to help individual business innovators, dreamers, understand how to tell their story and do business with one of the most reputable brands in the world.

“I witnessed a 10-year-old CEO walk through the gates of Disney for the first time in her life and experience the full magic - not just as a tourist but as a business owner - and seeing how she can take a little bit of the magic that she experienced and bring that back to her company.”

For more on RICE, click here


 



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