In a new collaborative effort with Miller Lite, J Balvin wants to give back and pave the way for Latino-owned businesses via the “J Balvin’s Tab” program.
Teaming up with Accion Opportunity Fund — “a financial support system for small businesses that advance racial, gender, and economic justice for all,” according to its website — a limited-edition pint inspired by Balvin’s vibrant brand has been designed for nine and 15-packs. A portion of the proceeds from every purchase, up to $150,000, will be donated to AOF by Miller Lite and will fund nearly 50 Latino business owners and entrepreneurs across the country.
Additionally, Miller Lite will be giving away up to 10,000 beers per week between March 1st and April 30th, and fans will have a chance to win exclusive J Balvin signed merch by visiting www.millerlite.com/jbalvin.
Below, the Colombian artist tells Billboard more about the initiative.
It’s not the first time you have teamed up with Miller Lite. Tell us about your new initiative and purpose behind “J Balvin’s Tab.”
We are back together, Miller Lite and J Balvin, to always support our Latino community with their small businesses and their entrepreneurial visions. We want to help entrepreneurs learn how to elevate their businesses and guide them on where they should be. And also help them financially so that they can make the right investments and grow. When I was starting my career, I had no one to tell me where to go. Since I didn’t have that, I had to learn on my own, and now I want to help others so that they have an easier path.
On the limited-edition bottle, we see some of your signature elements, such as the lightning bolt, the happy faces, and the colors: Why are these images so representative of your brand?
All of that is really genuine to what I’ve always wanted to show. It’s not like I wanted to design a lightning bolt or a smiley face just because. When I got to the [music] business I wanted to change the perspective that I was bad or malicious. Obviously coming from Colombia, with such a dark past, I wanted to raise joy, and that’s where the smileys come from. It became like a trademark. They [the designs] always appear in my collaborations, in my shows, in this campaign, and in everything that has to be related to J Balvin. It is a very powerful brand.
Now that you’re encouraging Latino business owners with this campaign, what has been the best business advice you’ve ever received?
There are many, but one of the best ones that I have been very close to is really looking for a career that you are passionate about and that you really enjoy. Many times people work to make money and they focus more on making money than on what they really love. I say follow your dreams because sooner or later you will see the results.
On that note, what type of business would you like to start that’s not related to music?
We are on the same page because I love fashion and it has always been one of my passions, just like music and architecture, so I would like to do a fashion project that has a global impact on all Latinos.
Now, if you can share a couple of beers with two colleagues and talk about business, which artists would it be with?
Wow! That was good! I know I would work with Anitta, I know she’s a great person, and I know she’s focused. And, wow, not everyone is focused on business, you know? It is still very respectable. I would say with Maluma too, he’s also a very entrepreneurial man.