Social networks Facebook and MySpace are about to get a taste of competition. An entity of Urban Communications, an up and coming technology business, OurSpace is a new social network aimed towards young black internet users.
Florida A&M alumni have the opportunity to network on Rattler Roundup. However, what makes OurSpace different is that all students of Historically Black Colleges and Universities’ can join by using their student email addresses.
Kenny Clash, 31, the president of Urban Communications, said he is sure OurSpace will satisfy individuals.
“When we started we wanted to start a company that didn’t force feed user content,” said Clash, a native of Wilmington , N.C. “We just want to provide the platform for users to create their own content.”
OurSpace launched Sept. 17, 2008 and enables users to create their own content. Clash said the site is the result of hard work and a clever business strategy.
“I came together with a business partner,” he said. “From brainstorming and recognizing the markets needs for our culture, we realized no one has realized our culture on the Internet. We decided to create a platform for African-Americans. We are not a stereotypical/hip-hop blog media company. We will become the premiere online destination for African-American’s by 2010. Other social networks may be a media company, but we are a technology company. There is a huge technology gap for our culture so we want to provide the technology.”
Launched in March, Urban Communications is located in Baltimore, Md. Aside from OurSpace, the business also owns Black Power, an online magazine ran by Jam Donaldson.
Clash oversees all business activities such as marketing, operations and investor relations and relationships. His partner, Patrick Nagle, is in charge of the technology aspects of the company.
Clash said he is proud of both OurSpace and Black Power, but as of right now, OurSpace is his concentration.
“We have some exciting technology coming out for OurSpace.com in the next few months I’m so excited about that,” Clash said. “We are also building relationships with some heavy hitters in the entertainment business. We’ll announce that when it becomes solidified.”
Clash said he believes properties will reach over 50 percent of the expected 25 million Black internet users by 2010.
Robert Butler, 33, who serves as the Director of Marketing for OurSpace is of the same opinion.
Butler said he is impressed with the social networking site and that students are too.
“It has been interesting,” Butler said. “A lot of students are excited and a lot of them like that it is exclusive. They also like the fact that the site isn’t cluttered.”
Clash said he has big plans for OurSpace.
“Over the next two months we will release a full blown platform for Our Space,” he said. “We will be more aggressive about marketing. At a school like FAMU there are unlimited opportunities for a social network to grow. In the next few months, I plan on visiting the university. Rattlers better look out because we’re recruiting marketing teams.”
Clash said he is optimistic about the site’s future and said business has been great so far.
“I found my passion for my people,” Clash said. “My goal is to close the technology gap for African-Americans. With my passion and drive it was a cake walk. When you’re passionate about something then you can build a team and build a capital and start a company and that’s what started Urban Communications.”
For more information on OurSpace, visit www.ourspace.com.