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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 »

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 »

Recently, we discussed the Census data that suggests Hispanic enterprises are growing more rapidly than non-minority businesses.  Although we laud the fact that the number of Hispanic and other minority-owned businesses have increased, a closer look at the Census numbers might reveal a lesser achievement.

As the author of the following article states in his conclusion:

When reports like this one are released, how the results are framed affects the response people have to them. By presenting the results as indicating that Black and women-owned businesses grew faster than White and men-owned ones, the Census Bureau gave the impression that these businesses are doing well and [there are] no problems that require policy makers’ attention.

However, although the numbers on the face might reveal the opposite, the truth is minority-owned businesses need even more attention in order to ensure their success (a goal of The National Puerto Rican Chamber of Commerce). 

The following article was posted at smallbiztrends.com: 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 »

Entrepreneurship is one of the best ways to create jobs and wealth. The author of the linked article below, and those quoted within the article, agree with this philosophy.

We have chosen to highlight the following section as it encompasses our philosophy on entrepreneurial education and economic enhancement:

Michael D. Woodard, president and CEO of the Washington, D.C.-based consulting firm Woodard and Associates and the author of Black Entrepreneurs in America: Stories of Struggle and Success, believes [historically black colleges and universities] would be remiss if they do not provide a curriculum on entrepreneurship.

“The most effective way for one generation to transfer wealth to the next generation is to engage in entrepreneurial activities,” Woodard says.

“Entrepreneurship is one way of providing jobs in the African-American community,” adds Woodard, noting that many minority-owned businesses have staffs that are over 50 percent non-White. 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 »
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 »

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