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 Black Stats  
Frequently requested data on African American consumers

Black Buying Power:
 $836 Billion (2010)

Black U.S. Population:
 41.1 million

Top Five Black Cities
 - New York
 - Chicago
 - Detroit
 - Philadelphia
 - Houston

Top Five Black Metros:
 - New York-New Jersey
 - Washington-Baltimore
 - Chicago-Gary
 - Los Angeles
 - Philadelphia

Top Five Expenditures:
 - Housing $203.8 bil.
 - Food $65.2 bil.
 - Cars/Trucks $29.1 bil.
 - Clothing $29.3 bil.
 - Health Care $23.6 bil.
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U.S. Census 
Bureau Data

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Magic Johnson's investment makes him part-owner and chairman of Vibe Holdings

By Stephen Ceasar
From the Los Angeles Times
(February 10, 2011) With a multimillion-dollar investment, Lakers Hall of Famer Magic Johnson is set to become chairman of a New York-based magazine and television company that he says is poised to tap into a coveted urban audience.

Johnson, 51, will be chairman of Vibe Holdings, the parent company of Vibe magazine and owner of the music-and-dance TV show "Soul Train," including its star-studded performance library. No financial details of the deal were disclosed, although a Johnson spokeswoman described it as "an eight-figure investment."

Johnson made the deal in partnership with the Yucaipa Cos., a Los Angeles-based investment firm headed by billionaire Ron Burkle. It is the first step of a process aimed at revitalizing Vibe Holdings and making it the center of influence for an urban audience he has reached with other businesses in the past, Johnson said.

"We know where they are and we know how to reach them," Johnson said. "They are loyal to our brands."

Vibe Holdings is also the parent company of magazine publisher Uptown Media and more than 25 websites. Vibe magazine is published six times a year and is currently found only on newsstands.

The company's brands, particularly Vibe magazine and Soul Train, have an especially loyal fan base in the African American market but have historically reached beyond it, making them attractive to advertisers as a "tastemaker for overall culture," said Peter Kern, a managing partner at New York-based InterMedia Partners, which owns a stake in the company.

Johnson said the company planned to bring the show back to television and begin licensing content. The company owns about 300,000 photos and about 1,100 hours of video of performances by music legends including Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye and the Jackson 5.

Controlling the Soul Train brand also gives the company an opportunity to rejuvenate the influence the show had on popular culture during its heyday with today's audience, Johnson said. "I learned how to dance watching 'Soul Train.' We're going to make it hip and young again."

As chairman, Johnson said, he would be involved in business strategy and engaging advertisers but would leave day-to-day operations to the current leadership. The company would also attempt to acquire other media that complemented its strategy.

"We're open for more business," Johnson said. "We have an opportunity to take this to a whole other level."

In October, Johnson sold his 4.5% stake in the Lakers to billionaire Patrick Soon-Shiong and sold 105 Starbucks coffeehouse franchises back to the company for a reported $75 million. Johnson has also expressed interest in one day becoming a majority owner of a professional sports team and has been involved in the push to bring a National Football League team back to Los Angeles.

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New "Buying Power" report: Black consumers spend as economy grows
Details $507 billion in expenditures

African-American consumers are cautiously increasing their spending in some key product categories, even as they continue to make adjustments in a slowly growing economy. The finding comes from the soon to be issued 16th annual edition of "The Buying Power of Black America" report.

In 2009, black households spent an estimated $507 billion in 27 product and services categories. That's an increase of 16.6% over the $435 billion spent in 2008. African-Americans" total earned income for 2009 is estimated at $836 billion...

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