“It is extremely difficult to acquire financing when you are a single mom with no money and no job, so I bootstrapped my business,” says Adriana Chavela, who launched Hola Carolina, a bimonthly Spanish-language magazine, in 2015 with more determination than capital. “With my last $200, I printed an eight-page media kit and started knocking on doors.”
It's not easy to be a black-owned business in Grand Rapids. Michigan's second largest city is the second-worst metropolitan area in the U.S. for blacks to prosper, according to a 2015 Forbes.com ranking. In Kent County, blacks own less than six percent of businesses.
VEDC today announced that it has loaned $2.26 million to 24 African American-owned small businesses in Los Angeles, Chicago and New York through a new National African American Small Business Loan Fund.
For years, entrepreneurs belonging to minority communities have played a prominent role in driving the U.S. economy forward. When considering minorities new to the U.S., a Kauffman study (PDF) conducted in 2013 found immigrants were nearly twice as likely as native-born citizens to start businesses each month.
When Lili Hall quit her job in 2001 and decided to start her own creative marketing agency in the Twin Cities, she admits she was heading into uncharted waters. But she was determined to make something work.
The Black bank has played an important role in funding Black entrepreneurs, businesses and institutions, sustaining the Black community and helping individuals when other banks turned a blind eye. This Juneteenth–the commemoration of the end of slavery and the beginning of freedom and independence for African-Americans–provides an opportune time to examine the role of that Black financial institutions have played and continue to play, the ways in which integration impacted the economic ecosystem, and the challenges and opportunities facing Black banks.
For some African American-owned businesses like Dooky Chase's in New Orleans, black banks have provided lifelines, but a disconnect exists for younger entrepreneurs who could benefit.
An FDIC report last month found that half of all African American and Latino households are disconnected from the formal financial system, compared to one in five white households. This means blacks often pay more to cash checks, buy money orders and conduct other transactions.
Today more than one million small businesses owners in the United States face both a wide range of opportunities and a unique set of challenges.
A recent TD Bank survey of 128 Hispanic small business owners throughout the United States identified management confidence and how funds are allocated as the top two challenges among this group. There are many factors driving these sentiments, such as being responsible for managing a business and not knowing the best resources to utilize.
PHOENIX – Jenny Poon is a serial entrepreneur.
She runs the business collaborative Co+Hoots, where owners of small businesses, from tea suppliers to software design, share space, ideas and conversation.
Poon has fought and won battles for herself and others, contributing to a steady rise in Arizona businesses owned by women who are ethnically or racially diverse.
For minority entrepreneurs, choosing a business location that includes a diverse community and business friendly services can make a huge difference. Business ownership in the United States is varied and reflects our diverse and growing population.