By Juan Sandoval, former staff member
Note: This is the fifth and final in a series from our small business program, Rural Enterprise Assistance Project (REAP), highlighting activities from Sept. 1, 2016, to Aug. 31, 2017. Our staff placed 124 loans totaling $2,541,952 in that time period. To apply for a microloan, click here. Click here for the first story on highlights from businesses, here for the second story on staff accomplishments, here for the third story - a report from our executive director, and here for the fourth story on the Women's Business Center.
Latino-owned businesses will number 4.37 million this year, as projected by a Geoscape study.
This represents a growth of 31.6 percent since 2012, more than double the growth rate of all businesses in the U.S. (13.8 percent).
The Latino share of new entrepreneurs represents 24 percent of all businesses, compared to 10 percent a decade ago – a 140 percent increase. Latinos are 1.5 times more likely than the general population to start a business, according to the Kauffman Index of Entrepreneurial Activity.
While men owned more than 56 percent of Latino businesses in 2012, women now drive more of the growth. Between 2007 and 2012, the number of female Latino-owned businesses grew an incredible 87 percent.
Sales from Hispanic-owned businesses contribute $709 billion to the U.S. economy, an increase of 32 percent since 2012, and twice the total in 2007 ($351 billion dollars).
Because of this demand, from September 2016 to August 2017, the Center’s Latino Business Center (LBC) awarded 59 loans to Latino small businesses totaling $1,032,295.
From October 2016 to June 2017, the LBC served 826 people through trainings, roundtables, and technical assistance:
- 483 business owners participated in technology classes, e-commerce, Business Plan Basics, Simple Steps to a Well-Run Business, Marketing Trends, and QuickBooks courses.
- 343 entrepreneurs were counseled during 1,293 sessions.