'They're seeing the importance of diversity:' Black-owned small business sees holiday sales triple

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Jacquelyn Rodgers, owner of Greentop Gifts, says she started seeing an uptick in orders this past summer. The increase in sales is a surprise considering people were ordering Christmas paper in July.

But she isn't selling just any old wrapping paper--the products help fill a void by featuring a Black Santa.

Rodgers says she believes the sales spike is part of a bigger movement.

"Obviously, 2020 has brought representation to the forefront for everyone, especially for small businesses owners like us...being a woman-owned business and a Black-owned business," said Rodgers. "I think even more so this year, I think people are paying more attention to it. It's opened a lot of people's eyes to it and they're seeing the importance of diversity."

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Rodgers is already sold out of some items. To her excitement, business has tripled from this time last year, and sales are expected to soar even higher.

The wrapping paper is featured in the pages of this month's O Magazine, Oprah Winfrey's celebrated magazine, and Greentop Gifts is the official gift wrap sponsor of Oprah's "Favorite Things," the holiday gift list the former talk show host releases every year.

The line of paper will also be highlighted in the December issue of Good Housekeeping.

The magazine features are incredible exposure for a company that started less than five years ago.

"I designed the product because I wanted my son to see images that look like him," said Rodgers.

Rodgers says big-box retailers often sell holiday images, toys, decorations and wrapping paper that feature white Santas or white angels. There's usually not a lot of representation, if any, but she says she's trying to change that with her offerings.

And Rodgers says these products aren't just important for Black and Brown children: it offers kids of all races an additional gift this Christmas and shows them the importance of diversity.

"It is affirming to keep going as a small business owner, as a mom and entrepreneur," said Rodgers.

Products are available online and can also be purchased at The Lounge inside the Crabtree Valley Mall.

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