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Father and Son Launch First Black-owned Athletic Supply Company

BookDawg Sports is the first-ever Black-owned athletic supply company in the United States. Founded by Oronde Booker and his 14-year-old son, Kendall, the Atlanta-based company is the brainchild of a supportive father who saw a place for him himself and his son in a not-so-open market. As the father of a young athlete, Oronde became inspired after noticing there was a lack of diversity in suppliers of sports equipment, realizing that four companies dominated the industry.

“Black people have contributed much to sports, attracting fans and diverse audiences, redefining the game and helping shape its culture, yet so few are found ‘behind the ball,’ particularly when looking at industries like sports equipment,” Oronde Booker told Black News. That’s when he decided to be a supplier and even believed he could manufacture a better product. “We believe in high standards and high quality—our ball is for people who are serious about improving their game,” Booker added.

The athletic equipment industry is huge, raking in massive gains annually. According to Statista, in 2021 alone, U.S. wholesale sales of basketballs amounted to an estimated $286 million. The industry now makes room for BookDawg Sports’ premiere product the HW101 (Hard Work 101), a basketball made with premium microfiber composite leather, offering amazing grip and durability to last all season and beyond. It also boasts a cushioned core and deep channels that give players the ultimate precision and control when playing indoors.

“One of the things we’ve heard over and over again from our customers is about how it feels,” said Oronde. “A player knows when they’ve found the perfect ball based on how it feels in their hands, and we’re glad that we’re able to consistently provide that top quality experience.”

Booker is not shy about discussing the importance of his son’s contribution to the business, telling RollingOut, “My son’s been there for inspiration all the time, being a part of the process as far as testing the balls out and looking for when the shipment was coming. He wants to be a part of it, and he’s just learning the business through this process,” said Booker.

BookDawg Sports is currently taking pre-orders for the HW101, which retails for $79.99 and is in line with the standard pricing for similar basketballs of its caliber. The company plans to invest a percentage of each purchase into nonprofits supporting young, Black players who could not otherwise afford to play basketball.

To reserve your HW101 basketball, check out reviews or learn more, visit

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