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by José R. Mas, CEO,  MasTec

The introduction of smartphones like the iPhone and Android operated mobile phones has created a new avenue for businesses to effectively reach consumers.  The growth in applications (better known as “apps”) is skyrocketing and enabling businesses to cater their marketing efforts to mobile broadband users – a growing market with a high concentration of minority users.

According to a December 2010 survey conducted by Nielson, 31 percent of mobile phone users in the U.S. own smartphones.  Among these users, 45 percent of Hispanics, 45 percent of Asians/Pacific Islanders and 33 percent of African Americans owned smartphones, compared to just 27 percent of White mobile phone users.   The survey also shows that minorities are leading the charge in increased mobile broadband adoption rates with these groups opting for smartphones at higher rates than White users. Read the rest of this entry »


as posted by LatinoInternetJustice:

by Jorge Bauermeister

As reported by TRDaily, FCC Chairman Genachowski addressed one specific issue as “particular concern” for minorities during the Minority Media and Telecom Council’s Broadband and Social Justice Policy Summit – that issue being spectrum.  Having also listened to the Chairman’s remarks at MMTC – I believe that this is certainly a worthwhile issue to highlight.

Here are the points outlined by TRDaily that I agree are important – and of which the Chairman honed in on during his speech:

  • The FCC is committed to making more spectrum available for wireless broadband services, calling the issue “a particular concern for minority communities” because wireless devices “have become the primary means for accessing the Internet” for many African Americans and Latinos.
  • According to Chairman Genachowski, broadband Internet access is “no longer a luxury” but is instead “a necessity for full participation in our 21st century economy.”

I am hopeful that the Commission will take greater care and time to assess important issues like spectrum since it is this very issue that serves as a building block for expanding and growing America’s wireless infrastructure and connecting minority users to this life altering service.  For Hispanics, whose use of mobile broadband devices are often times the primary means for accessing the Internet – the spectrum issue is that much more important since it is a critical component for enabling providers to deliver reliable and quality services to allconsumers.  Talks on this issue are now beginning to heat up in Washington, DC – only time will tell what side of the aisle the FCC will land on.

by Marshall Kirby, Public Policy Analyst

America has long been recognized as one of the most diverse and multicultural countries on the planet.  We have been referred to as the Melting Pot of both civilizations and the world.  Over the last few decades, countless individuals and families have come here to build a better life, escape persecution, and live their own version of the American Dream.  On a busy street corner in a large city you can hear numerous languages spoken other than English.  We shop at businesses owned and operated by immigrants and people of other ethnicities.

Commentators and activists have commented on this, some expressing pessimism and others seeing diversity as strength.  Several years back, there was a debate among sociologists about the process in which these diverse backgrounds were assimilating into the American lifestyle.  The uncertainty primarily stemmed from viewing immigrant protesters in France and throughout Europe complaining of discrimination.  In the case of America, for the most part there have not been equal or equivalent events.  This is not say that America handles racial issues perfectly – as a nation we have a checkered past with slavery, segregation, discrimination, and poor treatment of ethnic, religious, and immigrant groups.  However, it seems that America has been able to walk a delicate tightrope and maintain the principle that diversity is strength in the grand scheme. Read the rest of this entry »

By: Marshall Kirby, Public Policy Analyst

After reading this article, I was reminded of an old saying– “numbers don’t lie, but statistics do.”  A press release from the Census Bureau reads “Minority Business Ownership Increasing at More Than Twice the National Rate.”  Sounds promising and gives a sense of economic progress, right?  It does at first glance.  However, some groups are giving the numbers and statistics a second look and coming to different conclusions.

Here are the raw numbers for business growth amongst racial and gender groupings for the calendar years 2002-2007:

  • All business: 18.0% increase to 27.1 million
  • Minority-owned: 45.6% increase to 5.8 million
  • Black-owned: 60.5% increase to 1.9 million
  • Women-owned: 20.1% increase to 7.8 million
  • Hispanic-owned: 43.6% increase to 2.3 million
  • White-owned: 13.6% increase to 22.6 million
  • Asian-owned: 40.7% increase to 1.6 million
  • Hawaiian/Pacific Islander-owned: 34.3% increase to 39,000
  • Native American/Alaskan Native-owned: 17.9% increase to 237,000
  • Veteran-owned: 2.4 million businesses*

* represents the first time the survey has tracked that categorization.

Looking at these statistics it would appear that business growth is doing well, especially for minorities.  However, 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 »

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 »

Read this article which  highlights the characteristics of the Puerto Rican Entrepreneur.  It was written in 1994, but is not outdated.

You will have to create an account and log in to see the whole article, but it is worth a read if you are studying the island’s entrepreneurial prospects:

There is no reason why any one group, race, religion, etc. should have better tools or abilities than another in order to produce in the entrepreneurial world.  This article highlights the continued disparity between minority-owned and majority-owned businesses and the reason behind the purpose of our organization:

The number of businesses owned by minorities increased faster than the number owned by whites, according to Census data released July 13. But minority companies’ economic impact­—measured by total sales and how many workers they employ­—budged only a little from 2002 to 2007. And the percentage of minorities who own businesses is still far lower than the percentage of whites who do.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) formed an alliance with the National Urban League last week aimed at boosting minority entrepreneurship in 9 U.S. cities.

The Urban League expects to have access to the MBDA’s vast network of small business specialists that will benefit entrepreneurs in Atlanta, Chicago, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Jacksonville, Fla., Kansas City, Mo., Los Angeles and New Orleans

Read more: Minority Business agency-Urban League alliance set for Phila. – Philadelphia Business Journal

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