For Kendra Blackett-Dibinga, entrepreneurship has taught her many lessons. Through resilience, community listening, and innovation, Kendra was able to grow her business in spite of challenges.
“We made it through the pandemic because we intrinsically knew what our community needed,” said Kendra. Kendra is the owner of Bikram Hot Yoga, a wellness business focused on yoga and fitness.
“We started with only yoga and expanded as we saw the need for our members to cross train to have stronger bodies.” Kendra began to study the needs of her community and explore how she could take advantage of the opportunities that were available to her.
Kendra decided to begin offering other wellness services as members shared their health journeys. It offers a range of services including cryotherapy, fascial stretch therapy, pulsed electromagnetic field therapy, and soon vitamin by IV therapy. Bikram Hot Yoga expanded quickly, but the COVID-19 pandemic moved them to downsize.
“Wacif supported my growth from day one. The technical assistance, advice, and support I received were invaluable,” said Kendra.
In the first year, the business became profitable, but Kendra was still working full time. In her second year of business, she took the leap to fully focus on the business, allowing her to put all her effort into building the community and offering more services.
Now, Bikram Hot Yoga is both virtual and in person. Wacif supported Kendra with funding for a larger location where she could truly see her vision come to life by adding new services.
“We made it through the pandemic because we intrinsically knew what our community needed,” said Kendra. “We pivoted and they pivoted with us.”
Kendra is a graduate of Wacif’s Ascend Capital Accelerator, an initiative that celebrates and supports entrepreneurs of color through coaching, community, and capital.
“We are here because the community wanted us to be here. That’s a testimony to the strong base we have built,” Kendra shared. “I continue to work with Wacif because of the support I get. We are now ready to grow but do so strategically.”