Armed with a cosmetology license, two bachelor’s degrees and a love for organic hair care, Mariatu “Tu” Browne is on a mission to unlock the natural beauty of every client she encounters. She discovered her passion for hair at the early age of nine while braiding hair for her friends and family in her native home in Sierra Leone.
Access to capital
National Small Business Week, which began on Sunday, April 29 and runs through Saturday, May 5, is a time to highlight the role small businesses play in our economy. Small businesses represent 99% of all employer firms and account for half of our nation’s jobs and economic output. Innovation by small businesses spurs growth throughout the entire economy and boosts prosperity in their local communities, and NSBW is an important time to celebrate these contributions. It’s also an important time to consider policies that can help facilitate entrepreneurial activity year-round.
A few years ago, Rachel Bernier-Green was looking for an outlet from the stress of her intense job at a multinational accounting firm and discovered a passion for baking. It didn’t take long before friends and family were encouraging her to sell her baked goods to the masses. Rachel founded ‘Laine’s Bake Shop, LLC in 2013 using a shared kitchen space, working on the side to get her business off the ground. After a few years of baking part-time, Rachel decided to finally quit her job and start a bake shop full-time with her husband Jaryd.
April is often associated with spring cleaning and reorganizing, which means you finally made the time go through that overflowing junk drawer or to organize last year’s financial statements for the tax filing deadline. But when it comes to your finances, you can use this time to do more than just file your tax return documents thanks to the resources provided as part of National Financial Literacy Month.
Throughout Women’s History Month, we celebrate the economic, social and political contributions that women make to our world. Women account for roughly half of the American workforce, attain higher levels of education than men and are an increasing share of primary or solo breadwinners. There is no doubt that for America to thrive, we must promote the economic empowerment of women. Central to women’s economic success is women’s entrepreneurship, which contributes significantly to overall economic growth and prosperity.
Ramona Thomas, a trained mathematician with a Ph.D. in education, gave up an 18-year career and position as vice president of a venture philanthropy firm to strike out on her own and open what is now Chicago’s premiere artisan chocolate boutique—My Chocolate Soul.
It’s difficult for most small businesses to obtain a loan. Just ask Margo Strotter, owner of Ain’t She Sweet Cafe, which now has two locations–one in Bronzeville and one in Beverly.
When Margo was starting out she was her own bank, but she knew that wasn’t a long-term solution to her capital needs so she eventually sought help from traditional lenders. Unfortunately, those institutions were either unwilling or unable to help Margo.
In today’s political climate, a lot of political leaders talk about wanting to help small business, but oftentimes don’t take their actual comments and concerns into consideration when working on key policy issues, like tax reform and healthcare. That’s why we tackled this challenge head on at Small Business Majority’s 2017 Policy Forum, which brought 50 small business leaders from around the country to our nation’s capital to discuss how to promote policy reforms that will help small businesses thrive.
Alfredo Zendejas co-owns Accesorios Zendejas along with his wife, Leticia Sanchez, in Los Angeles, California. A true mom-and-pop enterprise, Alfredo and Leticia work together to design, create and deliver custom decorative pieces for quinceñeras, baptisms, weddings and other special occasions.
Are you a small business owner looking for alternative funding options beyond a traditional bank loan? A CDFI loan might be the answer you’ve been looking for.
While traditional bank lending is down, organizations called community development financial institutions, or CDFIs, are stepping up to fill the void by focusing on supporting small businesses and local economies in a holistic way. So what is a CDFI?