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Charleston Business

Honoring Our Black Entrepreneurs: Jacquette Land Ginyard

Feb 01, 2024 10:22AM ● By Angelia Davis

In 2022, more than 20 percent of South Carolina businesses were owned by people from racial minorities, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Of those businesses, more than 72,000 were owned by Black entrepreneurs.

A 2023 study conducted by Lendio, a company that specializes in loans to small businesses, used data from the Census Bureau and the U.S. Small Business Administration to rank each state’s support of minority-owned businesses.

The study ranked South Carolina 14th in the nation, citing a 147-percent job growth at minority-owned businesses.

Every entrepreneur faces challenges in getting a business off the ground and keeping it on a growth trajectory through the ups and downs of the economy and the upheaval of the Covid-19 pandemic. And many minority business owners face additional hurdles ranging from discrimination to a lack of mentorship opportunities, according to Lendio.

Meet some Black entrepreneurs around South Carolina who are navigating the challenges and putting their own stamp on the business world.

Jacquette Land Ginyard

Crate Restaurant & Bar

Greer

Jacquette Land Ginyard attributes her success as a serial entrepreneur to the grandparents who raised her.

Ginyard is the owner of Crate Restaurant & Wine Bar in Greer. Her grandparents were also restaurant owners and were “very strict.”

“I think having that as a child, just the discipline, always being taught to be a person of good integrity, to do what you say you’re going to do, are the things that really contributed to my successes,” she said.

Ginyard also owns E-Ford Commissary, which services prisons throughout U.S. 

When she was a child, Ginyard’s parents were incarcerated. Her grandparents took her and her brothers to visit them on the weekends.

They would have to decide if the children would see their mother eight hours away or their father, who was 45 minutes away, Ginyard said.

“Watching that, seeing that, I knew I wanted to do something in the corrections industry, I just did not know what lane, and this actually found me,” she said.

One of Ginyard’s greatest challenges and greatest successes has come from her work in this industry.

“There are not any female CEOs or owners in the commissary industry,” Ginyard said. “There are also not any African American-owned companies that are in this space.”

Staying honest, doing her due diligence, being knowledgeable about the industry, and staying current with the laws, rules, and policies are how she’s overcome the challenges.

One of the successes was being sought out by the State of Illinois Department of Corrections for contract work.

“They said they had learned about my success with servicing other states’ commissaries and that they wanted to work with me based on that,” Ginyard said. “They gave me an amazing opportunity to be put on a contract with four billion-dollar companies. I am the only small minority-owned company on this contract in the history of Illinois.”

Ginyard launched E-Ford Commissary in 2012. She launched Crate in 2020 just before the pandemic caused a shutdown of businesses.

A company has reached out to Ginyard about franchising Crate in other markets, she said.

“I’m seriously giving that some consideration right now,” she said.