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Jackson News

Posted on: February 1, 2017

Taylor's Candy Named Business of the Quarter in the City of Jackson

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Taylor Candy Company, a wholesale company that’s been in operation nearly 50 years, has been named the City of Jackson’s Business of the Quarter. Owners, Walter and Ozie Taylor, who are well respected Jackson entrepreneurs, set the bar high years ago when crafting a business model that’s helped propel Taylor Candy to success in the Washington Addition community in Jackson.

Mr. Taylor came from a family of entrepreneurs. His father operated several stores and Laundromats and several other relatives owned various businesses. Mr. Taylor got his feet wet in business by establishing his own route while operating his first truck as an independent distributor through his cousin’s wholesale candy distributorship. This led to the Taylors obtaining an SBA loan and establishing Taylor Candy Company at 1519 Cox St., which was later moved to the present location next door at 1523 Cox St. During this time, Mrs. Taylor joined in operating the company full time, after a nine-year teaching career. Mr. Taylor, also a short tenured school teacher, said “I needed a dependable and trustworthy associate, if the business was to be successful and so I beckoned her from the classroom and the rest is history.” At the height of the business’ activity in the 1980’s, the company had many employees and a total of nine independent distributors. The Taylors now operate the business solely, with occasional assistance from part-time workers.

                In 1974, the Taylors received acclaim from a prestigious minority business organization that named them “The Most Improved Business of the Year.” Also in 1997, the business was featured as an outstanding small business in a local publication.

The Taylors offered these words of wisdom to budding entrepreneurs: “You should have the right attitude toward your business pursuit. Don’t be afraid of failure. Failure gives you an opportunity to set a goal to understand what you have to do to improve. There are going to be downfalls. Let downfalls or failures be used as motivations for growth rather than reasons for giving up.”

They said when they first started the company, the School of Business at Jackson State University, the couple’s alma mater, provided counseling.

Through the years, the Taylors have supported community activity through giving to and participating in religious, social and educational programs and projects. Fellowship of Christian Athletes has been a benefactor, as well as numerous neighborhood schools and churches.

Mayor Tony T. Yarber and the City of Jackson are proud to recognize Taylor Candy Company as the January 2017 Business of the Quarter. The businesses’ commitment to the City of Jackson by virtue of longevity and its untiring effort and desire to promote Jackson as a good place to operate a business makes it more than worthy of this honor.    

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