The struggles of the Latino Business Community
The number of businesses owned by Latinos is much smaller than it should be. The Latino community is quite large but they own very few businesses. In large part this is because there are a number of challenges that the Latino business community has to overcome. Progress is being made in this regard but there is still a long way to go. Overcoming these struggles is going to be important if the lot of the Latino is ever going to be improved.
The biggest issue facing the Latino business community is the inability to raise money to start or expand a business. The Latino community is severely underserved by the financial markets. In large part this is in the form of the inability to get bank loans. In most cases the banks will create requirements to get a loan that are completely unreasonable so that Latinos who want to start a business are unable to get a loan. In a lot of cases they will simply deny the loan. The bank doesn't have to offer a reason why they refused to lend money.
In addition to struggling to raise money to start a business many Latino owned businesses find that it is difficult to get contracts with other businesses. They are largely shut out of the business to business side of the market and they are often at a disadvantage when it comes to being awarded contracts by the government as well. In a lot of cases this is down to a lack of business contacts. Usually companies award contracts to companies they have worked with before or to people they know. This puts the Latino owner at a disadvantage since he likely has not contacts in these businesses. He is further disadvantaged because there are few Latino run businesses that they can act as suppliers for.
Another area where the Latino business community struggles is in finding skilled employees. The fact is that most Latinos will not receive the same level of education as other ethnic groups will receive. This creates a number of difficulties, often the owners of the companies don't have the skills that they need. It also means that they often have to hire non Latinos to fill skilled positions since there are no Latinos available to fill the jobs.
Despite all of the challenges that the Latino business community faces there are a growing number of successful companies owned by Latinos. There is still a long way to go but progress is clearly being made. There are a number of organizations that are dedicated to helping Latinos to start a business and these have proven to be very helpful. The hope is that as the number of Latino owned businesses increases there will be a general increase in the quality of life of the community as a whole.