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While so many in Congress and the White House seem entirely concerned about providing large loans to large, existing businesses for their development and expansion needs, we too often forget about businesses that historically produce the greatest number of jobs in the shortest amount of time:  small businesses.

The following article discusses the Micro Loan program of the SBA.  Keep in mind also, that, after a recent partnership with Accion, The National Puerto Rican Chamber of Commerce is now one of these lenders and can help small (to VERY small) businesses to obtain one of these loans.  Just give us a call . . .

posted at ChamberofCommerce.com:

What You Need to Know About Micro Loans

The most tangible example of the micro loan exists in the United States, but did not originate in America. Originally conceived as a way to combat poverty, economist Muhammad Yunus received the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize for originally devising the program to benefit the Bangladesh poor.

Now the concept is used widely by the Small Business Administration to benefit small businesses and entrepreneurs in the purchase of improvements, inventory and equipment. These loans also provide working capital to launch small businesses. Read the rest of this entry »

Although this is not going to be a scientific study, we would like to get an idea of how many of you have ever started a business or dream of starting a business.  Please submit you answer via the poll to the left (on our main blog page), and click “view” to see the results.

Here at The National Puerto Rican Chamber of Commerce our mission is to support the economic development of Puerto Ricans, Hispanics, women, and other minorities around the nation.  If you own a business, or would like to, do not hesitate to become a member.  For a limited time, our initial membership is FREE and we have a ton of free services to offer.  List your name and email on our Facebook page or send us an email: Membership@NPRChamber.org.

Help us, help each other.

Legislators across the country now have their eyes on a little-known experiment on the island of Puerto Rico this week.  At the beginning of the previous week, two major events occurred which could have national implications, and will, one way or another, prove to be an example to the rest of the country.

First, in a quick strike over the slow news cycle weekend, the legislature and the governor passed a law increasing taxes on 40-50 of the top manufacturing companies on the island.  The expected return is now suggested to be $5.8 billion over the next 6 years.  However, the concern becomes whether the negative effects of these tax increases will outweigh the positive return.  History has proven that organizations will make adjustments based on tax policy: sometimes companies reduce their payroll, sometimes they reduce their operations or overhead, and sometimes they move their operations elsewhere to take advantage of more favorable tax environments.  The question is not whether they will react, but how they will react.

On the following Monday, strategically timed to counteract the negative repercussions of the tax increase, a law was passed having the exact opposite effect for most of the rest of the island.  As the Puerto Rican Federal Affairs Administration states on their website: Read the rest of this entry »

In a recent report by the U.S. GAO (Government Accountability Office), the U.S. is highlighted as having exceeded or equaled the best broadband resources in the world.  Amongst the 33 OECD countries, most of which are considered the most prosperous and economically free in the world, the U.S. excelled in most of the categories.  A statement by the SBE Council summarizes the results:

To sum up, the broadband story in the U.S. is impressive. Despite being one of the largest nations, with its population spread widely, U.S. broadband is comprehensively deployed; broadband speeds are above the average for developed nations (with some U.S. cities having the world’s fastest); and broadband subscribers are the most in the world, with above average subscribers per 100 households.

That’s a tribute to investments and innovations made by the nation’s broadband providers. It is, of course, critical that policymakers keep these impressive feats in mind when considering regulations and taxes in the broadband arena. A pro-competition, light regulatory touch policy regime clearly makes the most sense.[1]

Puerto Rico’s Contribution

Although Puerto Rico is a U.S. territory, and Puerto Ricans are U.S. citizens, broadband investment and implementation on the island is dismal.  The MMTC (Minority Media and Telecommunications Council) pointed this out in a notice submitted ex parte to FCC commissioners on September 12th.[2]

Within the letter, MMTC lauds the Commission’s recent report on broadband deployment,[3] then commences to upbraid its oversight of the 4 million Hispanic U.S. citizens living in Puerto Rico. Read the rest of this entry »

as originally posted here:

Drury University’s Edward Jones Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation will host its first Minority Entrepreneurship Conference on Oct. 9, from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Trustee Science Center.

The conference will provide an opportunity for minority entrepreneurs to learn basic entrepreneurship skills, hear about contracting with the government and specific funding opportunities and network with other entrepreneurs and professionals that can help with their businesses.

“The addition of the Minority Entrepreneurship Conference is a natural fit with our mission both at the Edward Jones Center and Drury at large,” said Kelley Still, executive director of the EJC.

“Our relationships with the minority community Read the rest of this entry »

We recently came across a book that caught our attention a little more than most.  This book, written by a professor and business school dean at the University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez, Dr. Jose Romaguera, offers a little bit more than your average book on entrepreneurship.  Entitled Chispa Empresarial (or “Entrepreneurial Spark” in English) the book provides helpful advice, thought-provoking questions, and true entrepreneurial success stories for the budding entrepreneur.

After reading other books on the subject of entrepreneurship, it becomes apparent that most classroom books study the mindset of the entrepreneur and attempt to demonstrate specific characteristics or tendencies of “the typical” entrepreneur.  Sometimes this is off-putting for the budding entrepreneur because if their own characteristics do not align with those of other “successful” entrepreneurs, they tend to become discouraged.

However, Chispa Empresarial, with its many stories/examples Read the rest of this entry »

More than ever before, the importance of broadband access is being discussed in Washington and amongst Telecom companies across the U.S. Perhaps due to the disparity between other minority groups’ use of broadband and that among Latinos (44% of Latinos have adopted broadband usage compared with more than 56% of African-Americans and 67% for White-Americans)* the issue is being discussed whether Broadband is essential for Latino’s success. Is this technology’s importance being blown out of proportion?

The importance of the issue is being highlighted by the government’s proposed intervention in internet technologies through “Net Neutrality,” the billions of dollars (with a “B”) in resources being earmarked for projects across the country**, and the many studies demonstrating correlations between access to technologies and economic success. Essentially, however, all agree that the future of broadband will a have wide-ranging impact on all Americans, not just minorities. But specifically considering the case of minorities, lack of access or slow adoption will have a tremendous impact on their futures. Read the rest of this entry »

In a recent excerpt from an article by the WSJ, Mr. Carl Schramm, President of the Kauffman Foundation, makes comments about investments in Minority Entrepreneurship:

Finally, the foundation goes out of its way to support minority entrepreneurship. Mr. Schramm doesn’t use any social-justice lingo to explain the program, but reverts to a kind of charming nerd-speak. He says that after a lot of analysis, Kauffman has found that there is “the greatest delta among black males.” In other words, for a given amount of entrepreneurial investment, Read the rest of this entry »

A study, published in April of this year by The Georgetown Center for Business and Public Policy, gives interesting details on what may actually happen if Net Neutrality is implemented by the FCC.

In the study, researchers concluded that plans promoted by the FCC would have the opposite intended effect on broadband household penetration. The FCC would like broadband providers to invest heavily in infrastructure that would allow greater access to all Americans across the board, but especially amongst the lower levels of penetration within Hispanic and other minority communities. However, the increased costs that broadband providers will incur will be passed onto consumers, which will result in decreased market penetration for Hispanics, African-Americans, and others, according to the research. Read the rest of this entry »

New business formation is one of the most important economic and social activities for any society expecting economic gain and innovation. Research sponsored by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation reveals that new business formation is widespread and involves all racial and ethnic groups. Following are highlights of two recent studies relevant to minority entrepreneurship, including The Entrepreneur Next Door: Characteristics of Individuals Starting Companies in America and Minorities and Venture Capital: a New Wave in American Business.

  • Entrepreneurship is a widespread activity in the United States. Participation is as common as getting married or the birth of a baby. About 6.2 in every 100 U.S. adults 18 years and older are engaged in trying to start new firms
  • Blacks are about 50 percent more likely to engage in start-up activities than whites. Hispanic men Read the rest of this entry »

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