Latino-owned businesses are a bright spot in the state’s economy

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Welcome to RI Latino Commerce Corporation, an initiative of Commerce Corporation, the site is a small business initiative that serves as a resource for Latino entrepreneurs and existing business seeking to access tools and build partnerships that facilitate their development. Latino Commerce Corporation connects small businesses with technical assistance and services, provides streamlined access to government agencies, professional associations, nonprofit business service organizations, and more. This is where you can share your thoughts on the next big ideas that will improve Rhode Island economic development and I invite you to bookmark it in your browser and return often to obtain fresh information.

A key opportunity for Rhode Island’s economic development Latino entrepreneurial development exists with the new state economic development plan that for the first time includes the Latino business community. According to the 2015-2035 Rhode Island Economic Development Plan the state’s Latino-owned businesses are a bright spot in the state’s economy that needs to be integrated into the state’s economic development strategy and business development vision to capitalize on this momentum, vibrant, dynamic market looking to grow and create jobs in our state. According to figures from the U.S. Census Bureau 2007 Survey of Business Owners, Rhode Island Latino-owned business jumped from 3,415 in 2002 to 5,764 in 2007, an increase of 68.8 percent. Over the same time period, revenues increased by 115.4 percent, from 213.7 million in 2002 to 460.4 million in 2007.

Though exciting new programs in the entrepreneurial system in Rhode Island have been developing over the past number of years, these tend to be concentrated in the high-tech sector, with less focus on other types of businesses, but to scale its entrepreneurial development system, Rhode Island has to ensure that Latino entrepreneurs have the opportunity to turn a smart idea into a successful and sustained small business, from small bodega owners, service, craftsmen to software developers and medical offices would promote livelier places and healthier local economies in Rhode Island. This foundational component to an effective entrepreneurial system includes efforts to encourage entrepreneurship through the education system, and also to develop partnerships with community and faith based organizations, business leaders, and universities. This broad scope of outreach is essential to sustaining and scaling the system. RI Latino Commerce Corporation fulfills this comprehensive and accessible directory of available resources and services to the fast growing Latino business community.

Entrepreneurship is intimately related to economic development and vital to the progress of any regional economy. Latino Entrepreneurs can help Rhode Island by providing jobs, conducting business locally, creating and participating in entrepreneurial networks, and investing in community projects. In many cases, entrepreneurship leads to new small business development that will add to the already enormous number in the state. Considering the impact of entrepreneurship and small business development, Rhode Island could potentially experience considerable benefits by improving the conditions for expanding entrepreneurial and small business efforts within the state. The data demonstrates Rhode Island’s Latino-owned businesses are a bright spot for Rhode Island’s economy. The state needs to continue to align its economic development strategy and business development efforts to capitalize on this momentum so vibrant, dynamic Latino companies looking to grow and create jobs in our state have the necessary tools and resources to succeed.

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