The collaboration provides guidance to Hispanic small businesses and startups

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Hispanic Small Business Panel

To support Latino-owned businesses in Northwest Arkansas and the River Valley, a Hispanic Small Business Panel was held May 26 at the University of Arkansas Economic Development Center of Fort Smith, located in the Bakery District in Fort Smith.

The panel, presented in Spanish, was moderated by Carolina Mejia, bilingual business consultant with the Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, sponsored by Arvest Bank and led by Bill Sabo, director of the center of development.

Panel participants included Laurencia Valdez of Arvest Bank, Tammy Pacheco of Alfa & Omega Multiservices and Edwin Nieto of PG Roofing & Construction Inc. The discussion focused on developing skills in management, financing, start-up and pre-planning, cash flow management, marketing, social media, legal issues, tax planning and women-owned businesses.

“Starting a business is hard enough, but when a language barrier adds complexity, it can cause someone to give up on their dream of owning their own business,” Sabo said.

Panelists offered advice to event attendees on ways to save money and boost credit to be more attractive to potential lenders, track income and expenses, hire specialists to help them through all the unfamiliar accounting and bookkeeping processes, learn to delegate and focus on what you do best.

According to the Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center, there are more than 4.65 million Latino-owned businesses in America, generating an estimated $700 billion in revenue annually, which has a significant impact on the American economy.

For more information or a consultation, contact Carolina Mejia, U of A Bilingual Consultant for Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center, at [email protected] or call 479-575 -5148.

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