Entrepreneurship: Business growth
Percentage change in number of firms over the period indicated. Universe includes all firms classifiable by gender, ethnicity, race, and veteran status. Firms are classified by race/ethnicity and gender based on the self-identification of the majority owner. A single firm may be tabulated in more than one racial/ethnic group if the majority owner(s) was reported to be of more than one race. All racial/ethnic groups other than white and people of color may include Latinos who identify with each particular group. No data is reported for geographies or demographic subgroups with insufficient sample sizes. For more information, see the data and methods document. | National Equity Atlas Data & Methods: Technical Documentation
Percent change in number of firms by race/ethnicity:
Do all people have the opportunity to start a business?
Why it matters
Expanding opportunities for people of color and women to overcome barriers to starting and growing successful businesses is critical for inclusive growth. Research shows that businesses owned by people of color are more likely to hire employees of color than other firms, and they generate increased economic activity in low-income communities and communities of color.
Grow an equitable economy: Policies to expand and sustain business ownership for all residents
- Increase access to resources to help underrepresented entrepreneurs build and repair credit and attract investment and loan capital to start and grow their businesses.
- Increase access to capital for Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) Business Centers, which are charged with creating sustainable jobs within businesses owned and operated by entrepreneurs of color through services focused on access to capital, contracts, and markets
- Improve MBDA data-tracking mechanisms to better track utilization of MBDA services and inform policies that support businesses owned by people of color
- Ensure access to affordable banking products, particularly those that can build credit history and scores – credit cards, credit lines, and bank-sponsored loans (not payday loans or other alternative financial products that don’t report to credit bureaus).
- Connect aspiring entrepreneurs to business mentoring programs through grassroots organizations and government agencies, including the SCORE association, Entrepreneurship.org, and Prosperity Now.
- Assess and fill gaps in the entrepreneurial ecosystem to support underrepresented entrepreneurs.
- Expand business opportunities through equitable procurement and contracting strategies.
- Close the racial wealth gap by increasing access to capital and government contracts for people of color.
- Include entrepreneurship as a part of career and technical education for high school students and include age-appropriate entrepreneurial skill-building in K-12 education
- Offer low-income communities financial advantages similar to those in wealthy communities by expanding services at CDFIs to include small-dollar loans and savings accounts
St. Paul’s Inclusive Contracting Efforts Expand Access to City Contracts
In order to support its equity goals for City contracting and procurement, the City of St. Paul instituted a more transparent and accessible online bidding platform and one-day certification program for vendors to become registered as minority-owned business enterprises (MBEs), woman-owned business enterprises (WBEs), or small business enterprise (SBEs). These certifications are recognized by Hennepin County, Ramsey County, Minneapolis, and St. Paul, making it easier for businesses to pursue public procurement and contracting work regionally. The City has foregone five-year agreements in favor of yearly agreements whenever possible, broken down larger projects into small subcontracts to increase opportunities for new and small businesses to bid, and removed the financial bond requirement for projects less than $100,000 to make them more accessible to small contractors. Learn more.