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Black Entrepreneur Spotlight Series



We would greatly appreciate it if you could tell us a little about your company.

CafeULU is a worker-owner co-op which is wholly owned by the Us Lifting Us LLC Cooperative. Us Lifting Us is a worldwide group of individuals, businesses, non-profits, and families pooling our monies and opening businesses in the midst of our membership communities. Coffee is the first market we have decided to burst into due to it’s nature as the second most traded commodity in the world. Internet coffeehouses are places for the community to gather, share ideas, and debate topics, as quiet places to study or people watch, and are yet gaining popularity in the US.

We work with other co-ops and businesses dedicated to free trade, sustainable, and healthy alternatives. We support the communities that we do business,by giving to a local charity and joining the neighborhood associations. We encourage and solicit input from the employees about menu items and certain policies or procedures which affect them. Coffeehouses are the first, but not the only industry that Us Lifting Us LLC will develop and make profitable for our members.

 What was your child hood aspirations?

As a child I liked to tinker and take things apart and found it unbearable to know of the suffering of a human or animal and not be able to do anything about it. I focused on science and technology first majoring in Chemistry to fulfill a path in medicine. Not long after, my scientific nature took over early in my educational path and directed me towards a life and career in information technology and business.

Can you give our readers a quick answer on business advice?
 Advise on business advice, take it with a grain of salt especially from someone who is not intimately involved in your business. Keep your business model in mind always and don’t stray, be adaptable and unafraid of trying new things. Test everything, nothing is for sure. Know the limits of your liability. Have people close who can give you analytical advice not just add more work to your slate.
What was your toughest challenge?
 As the business developer my responsibility is to get the project off the ground and push it into manifestation. Once realized then the challenge is to place the processes, procedures, bylaws of a co-op, and adapt that to the local area based on governing regulations. At the same time keeping the Us Lifting Us and CafeULU brands in a positive light so that all feel welcome to experience a superb taste of Africa.
Ken Hilliard
(678) 640-5825
2036 Sylvan Road SW, Atlanta, Georgia 30310
(470) 788-8124

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