Hispanic Small Business Owners Expect 2017 to Be Banner Year, Bank of America Survey Reveals

Hispanic Entrepreneurs Significantly More Optimistic About Growth
Prospects, Lean on Strong Support Systems of Family, Friends and

CHARLOTTE, N.C.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Owners of Hispanic small businesses are incredibly optimistic about the
year to come – much more so than their non-Hispanic counterparts.
According to the inaugural Bank
of America Hispanic Small Business Owner Spotlight
, they are
significantly more hopeful about revenue and hiring plans in 2017 –
which, as the fastest-growing segment of the small business sector,
further cements their role as a critical driver of local economies and

The study, which focuses on the aspirations and pain points of Hispanic
small business owners across the country, found that 71 percent of
Hispanic entrepreneurs expect their revenue to increase in 2017 – 20
percentage points higher than that of non-Hispanic respondents (51
percent). In addition, more than half of Hispanic entrepreneurs plan to
hire more employees over the next 12 months, compared to one-quarter of
non-Hispanic small business owners. The long-term view also looks
promising, with 76 percent predicting business growth over the next five
years, compared with 55 percent of non-Hispanic small business owners.

“For our community of Hispanic small business owners, the American dream
of prosperity through hard work is alive, real and inspiring,” said
Elizabeth Romero, Small Business Central Division executive, Bank of
America. “They see opportunity for themselves, as well as their
families, and are leveraging personal networks and communities to help
them realize their dreams. Even in the face of the same challenges and
economic concerns that affect all small business owners, they are
proving to be not only resilient, but incredibly bullish about their
future plans and prospects for success.”

“Hispanic-owned small businesses are a vital driver of economic growth
and American jobs. The Bank of America findings show that trend is on
track to continue in 2017. Research such as this is important in
highlighting the critical contributions that Hispanic-owned businesses
are making to build and sustain prosperity for families and communities
across the country,” said Javier Palomarez, president and CEO, United
States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

Hispanic small business owners aggressively planning for growth,
split on lending gap

Sixty-eight percent of Hispanic small business owners have applied for a
loan at some point during the lifetime of their business, compared with
48 percent of their non-Hispanic counterparts. Of those who have applied
for a loan, 86 percent of Hispanic entrepreneurs were approved, similar
to the approval rate reported by non-Hispanic small business owners (85

Looking ahead, Hispanic small business owners are nearly four times as
likely as their non-Hispanic counterparts to have plans to apply for a
loan in 2017 (35 percent vs. 9 percent). Despite this, 51 percent
believe there is a lending gap for Hispanic versus non-Hispanic small
business owners, with slightly fewer (49 percent) saying the disparity
doesn’t exist.

Hispanic businesses have stronger ties to family, friends and

Hispanic entrepreneurs are more likely to look to family and friends not
only for financial investments, but also for help with running their
business. Sixty-six percent of Hispanic entrepreneurs have received
financial gifts or loans from family and/or friends at some point to
help fund their business — 29 percentage points higher than their
non-Hispanic counterparts (37 percent). When it comes to additional
forms of family support, Hispanic small business owners scored higher
across the board than non-Hispanic entrepreneurs on:

  • The influential role that family plays: 55 percent say their family
    plays an influential role in their business decisions, versus 39
    percent of non-Hispanic entrepreneurs.
  • Help with running the business: 63 percent say their family helps to
    run their small business, versus 54 percent of non-Hispanic small
    business owners.
  • Financial, emotional or operational assistance: 93 percent say they
    receive financial, operational and/or emotional assistance from their
    family, versus 83 percent of non-Hispanic small business owners.

In addition, Hispanic small business owners are more than twice as
likely to say they will pass their business on to a family member (42
percent vs. 18 percent of non-Hispanic small business owners).

Community also plays a key role for Hispanic entrepreneurs, as 69
percent say community is important to their individual business’ success
(vs. 47 percent of non-Hispanic small business owners), and 77 percent
support local nonprofits or charities (vs. 67 percent of their
non-Hispanic counterparts).

Hispanic entrepreneurs still concerned about a number of economic
issues despite overarching optimism

When asked about the single biggest business challenge they face,
Hispanic small business owners are split. Twenty-three percent cite
maintaining a work-life balance as their top concern, followed by
finding qualified candidates (19 percent), access to loan funding (17
percent), understanding regulations and policies (17 percent) and
managing the day-to-day of their business (11 percent). Only 3 percent
cite a language barrier as a challenge.

Although Hispanic small business owners are optimistic about 2017
revenue, hiring, and long-term growth, they are also highly concerned
about a number of economic issues. Health care costs are the top concern
for 71 percent of respondents – the same top concern for non-Hispanic
entrepreneurs (75 percent). However, Hispanic entrepreneurs are
significantly more concerned about:

  • The strength of the U.S. dollar (62 percent of Hispanic vs. 51 percent
    of non-Hispanic small business owners).
  • Corporate tax rates (61 percent vs. 49 percent).
  • Interest rates (61 percent vs. 45 percent).
  • Commodities prices (59 percent vs. 47 percent).
  • Credit availability (55 percent vs. 34 percent).

For a complete, in-depth look at the insights of the nation’s Hispanic
small business owners, read the 2017
Bank of America Hispanic Small Business Owner Spotlight
, and for
additional insights, download the Hispanic Small Business Owner
Spotlight infographic here.

Bank of America Hispanic Business Owner Spotlight
GfK Public
Affairs and Corporate Communications conducted the Bank of America
Hispanic Business Owner Spotlight survey between August 7 and October 4,
2016 using a pre-recruited online sample of Hispanic and non-Hispanic
small business owners. GfK contacted a national sample of 1,000 small
business owners in the United States with annual revenue between
$100,000 and $4,999,999 and employing between 2 and 99 employees, as
well as 348 interviews among Hispanic small business owners, 100 of whom
were primary Spanish speakers. The final results were weighted to
national benchmark standards for size, revenue, and region, and, for the
Hispanic augment, whether the respondents were primarily
English-speaking or Spanish-speaking. Previous waves of the Small
Business Owner Report survey were conducted by telephone. Best efforts
were made to replicate processes in sample, weighting, and method.

Bank of America
Bank of America is one of the world’s leading
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broad range of asset classes, serving corporations, governments,
institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers
industry-leading support to approximately 3 million small business
owners through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and
services. The company serves clients through operations in all 50
states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico
and more than 35 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE:
BAC) is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

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