Per Florida Trend, Hillsborough and Pinellas County are home to nearly 400,000 of the states Hispanics. With 32.9% of the population, Hispanics are a huge part of what make Tampa, Clearwater and St. Petersburg a cultural mosaic.
With all that economic potential, Prospera, a non-profit economic development organization, has made it their mission to empower Hispanic entrepreneurs to either establish new businesses or grow and expand a current business.
Prospera can help during the start-up phase by offering training, consulting, business grants and access to capital using bilingual service models.
When CEO Mercedes Young wanted to start her own consulting firm after years of experience, she sought help from Prospera, which got her business off the ground by helping her get the proper licenses and working with her to develop a business plan. They provided consulting and a branding kit and helped with website development. In 2016 Vivid Pro Consulting was established with long local reach in the areas of land surveying and civil engineering.
Prospera can help an already established Hispanic owned business by offering assistance in business development with resources such as consultants, subcontracted professionals in different fields, subject matter experts, workshop presenters and community volunteers.
Armando Acosta bought Rompin’ Rovers, a doggie daycare, boarding and training facility in Largo. He initially had some working capital and marketing issues that were preventing his new business from growing. He started working with Prospera to repair and analyze his business plan and quickly realized he had other issues. With Prospera helping to solve those issues, in three years sales have increased by 40% and the facility has been able to expand to make room for even more growth.
When Federico Lorente and Catalina Banchero brought their producing talents to Clearwater from Venezuela, they needed to make new connections and market themselves for US clients. They started working with Prospera and attending their social marketing seminars and ultimately started LED Pro Event Services, a full-service event production agency. Prospera even provided help acquiring a bridge loan when Hurricane Irma hurt their business.
Prospera has had an economic impact of 1.5 billion dollars across Florida. And so far, Prospera has served more than 14,000 clients and marketed almost 95 million in loans. They’ve helped clients create or retain over 15,000 jobs and trained nearly 47,000 entrepreneurs.
Prospera can help you. To get started, attend an orientation or schedule an appointment with a business development consultant.
Prospera is one of several partners of Clearwater Business SPARK – a network of resources to support businesses and entrepreneurs in every stage of development so that you may easily identify and obtain the resources you need to grow in the greater Clearwater area. Think of the network as the first “place” you go to determine where you need to go.