29, Co-Founder, Urban Box Office (UBO). Cooper is one-third of the trio (which included the late former Motown CEO George Jackson) who launched UBO (www.UBO.net) as a comprehensive on line, urban/hip-hop network in March. Cooper’s ability to help capture a lucrative but elusive urban community — estimated to be worth as much as $85 billion annually — should keep his star on the rise.
42, Managing Director, Black Enterprise/Greenwich Street Corporate Growth Partners. Who will finance the next generation of be 100s companies? Williams, the managing director of the three-year-old private equity investment fund backed by financial services giant Citigroup and Earl G. Graves Ltd. Williams was key in raising nearly $100 million to seed the fund. The 20-year veteran will play a vital role in helping black-owned businesses leap a major hurdle: access to capital.
32, President & CEO, YabYum Entertainment and Edmonds Entertainment Group Inc. Edmonds runs seven successful enterprises involved in everything from music to movies. With award-winning soundtracks and the box office smash Soul Food among her company’s credits, Edmonds’ firm represents the next frontier of black power in Hollywood — producers who can create projects for black actors and directors.
Charles H. James III
40, Founder, President & CEO, ProduceOnline.com. James comes from a long line of entrepreneurs who have reinvented the family business, C.H. James & Sons Inc., an international produce distributor, since its founding in 1883. His web business is aimed at exploiting business-to-business e-commerce by simplifying communications between buyers and sellers of fresh produce. Look for James to build on the family legacy of business innovation.