Our city is home to so many incredible businesses and so we asked the founders how they came up with the ideas for their businesses and have shared their responses below.

Renee K. Smith | Founder of Akika Flower Essences & Apothecary, Flower Essence & Reiki Practitioner, Earth Steward

I began taking flower essences when my daughter was four months old. As a kinesthetic learner, I noticed that my entire left side was going numb. I sought assistance through acupuncture to begin moving the energy around and assist with managing my stress as a new mother. My acupuncturist told me to try flower essences. And it worked. This subtle medicine was able to allow me the opportunity to create new habits around my role as a mother as well as helped me with uncovering deep seated emotions that had taken residence in my body. After my experience with flower essences, I decided to begin studying flower essences and became a flower essence practitioner. Akika Flower Essences and Apothecary was born out of my love of flower essences but also the acknowledgement of the vast amount of knowledge that the Earth and plants hold. Read more>>

Brittany Reid | Founder of Forever Roz

The pandemic taught me that you’re disposable to a company. I lost my job in March 2020 due to a company being scared of the unknown. The unknown was a virus that would change people’s lives forever. After losing my job, I wanted to create something to pass down to my children. I had come up with many different ideas, but none made sense. My mom, Rosalyn, passed away in 2019, and I wanted to dedicate my business to her. The name I created for my business was my mom’s nickname, Roz. Read more>>

Lathon & Chalana Ferguson | Chalana- Attorney, Educator, Author & Speaker, Lathon- Executive, Community Leader

Marriage MasterMYnds, LLC originated from the marriage mentoring ministry and network founded in 2016 serving the community in St. Louis, Missouri. It was initially established to encourage married couples to be intentional about their relationships and to strategically invest time and effort and become “masterminds” of building and maintaining healthy and fulfilling marriages. Marriage MasterMYnds has expanded its purpose and reach to a more inclusive audience, and is committed to improving the lives of individuals, couples, and families, with an emphasis on the Black community. Read more>>

Curtis Vaughn | CEO of Eastern Standard Time Records

When I started my record label Eastern Standard Time Records LLC. I was raised on the east coast “New Jersey”so I felt like that was what time it was or is. so I came up with E.S.T.R dedicated to east coast hip-hop and it’s been on ever since. Read more>>

Darius “Ferg” Ferguson | CEO of Sudden Peak

The idea for Sudden Peak came up just by listening to music everyday and wanting to learn more about how I could get a job in this industry. I was green; meaning I didn’t know much about the industry at first. I started to dig deeper when I wanted to see about being in the marketing, advertising space. I began to do a lot of research and I started out by seeing where artist that I like were signed. Based off of that I would look for a job with that label so I could possibly meet them or work on some type of project for them. Read more>>

Purvis Beach | CEO and Music Producer Platinum Level Production Inc.

I was born into a musical family. My father is a Gospel artist. He always had a challenge with finding a musician that would cater to his style so he created one (LOL). I got my start as his musician and in 2000 became his music producer. It was clear to me this was my calling and I haven’t looked back since. My artist name: PBX Business Name: Platinum Level Production (PLP) I came up with the name PLP as I believe that the work of myself and the artist of the company will ALWAYS produce “platinum” work!!! Read more>>

Judah Anu El | CEO / Certified Firearms Instructor & Training Counselor

I was first introduced to firearms by my grandmother at a young age. It wasn’t until my 30’s I was inspired by a friend and teacher Mike Smith to really start training and developing my knowledge. After training at an outdoor range vs shooting at an indoor range I was given a whole new perspective on firearms. Those experiences exposed the shortcomings of going to the indoor range and shooting at a still target vs actually training outdoors. The outdoor training sessions allowed me to understand the importance of shooting in different situations which may not be ideal. Read more>>

Ayofemi Barnes | Business Consultant, Foreign Exchange Market Educator & Co-Owner of Clear It Out! Junk Removal Atlanta

During the pandemic shutdown of 2020 I noticed the need for jobs that were not ‘corporate’ based. I realized to truly be successful and to maintain, I would need to be in control of my finances. Not a person that I would never meet, nor had my best interest in mind. Multiple streams of income were crucial at that point, and I went on the hunt for problems that I could solve. A major problem in my area that needed solved was the unsightly build-up of trash in our neighborhood. Read more>>

D’ True You Design Studio | Beauty Salon

Hey! The idea of my business was built over the years. It was a collection of ideas that I’ve had since a child. From how I’d dress to what I’d offer that was different from everyone else. When it came time for me to actually name and register my business, that was tricky. I knew it had to be different and catchy! It had to represent myself, clients and what I truly believed in which is embracing yourself. Embracing your flaws and all! Not trying to look or be like anyone else! So it was born D’ True You Design Studio. With the motto Be Bold Be True Be You! A place where you can be yourself and treated like the King/Queen you are! And we design more than just your hair! We design custom clothing for men and women as well. Read more>>