With the changes in demographics our Country is experiencing we all have a vested interested in the growth of minority-owned businesses (MBE). If minority owned firms were proportional to white firms in the labor market, there would be more than 9 million additional jobs and $3 billion in additional income.
The full Aspen Institute event can be viewed here. Below is a summary of the conversation.
What do we need?
- Outreach: many minorities (in particular Latinos) are not familiar with resources to help entrepreneurs
- More and better data: the Census Bureau annual survey of entrepreneurs is good first step, but may not capture enough
- We don’t just need more small businesses; we need them to scale to become medium sized businesses
- Access to Capital: We need more diversity in loan officers and investors (covert discrimination is being examined by Consumer Financial Protection Bureau)
- A better network: a large problem for MBEs is the lack of network, or examples of other in the community start and sustain businesses
Policies to look to:
- How W/MBE are utilizing venture capital, potential tax credit for VC investing in MBE
- First time entrepreneurship tax credit for low-income individuals as a way to subsidize entry into the market
- Entrepreneurship education: cultural and age appropriate instruction in both high school and in career/technical education