Friday, January 25, 2019

Female Founders Fund On Why Investing In Female Talent Matters

It’s an exciting time to invest in extraordinary female talent.

Founding Partner Anu Duggal knew this when she established New York City-based Female Founders Fund in 2014. The early-stage venture capital fund’s strategy then is the same as it is now. Female Founders Fund proves exceptional returns can be generated by investing in companies founded by women.

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To These Shrewd Business Owners, Being Latino Is a Huge Advantage

As President Trump sends another 5,000 troops to the Southern border to help fend off a caravan of asylum seekers, you might think being Latino in America would be something of a handicap. But you'd be wrong.

"I use the fact that I'm Brazilian, that I'm [Latina] to my benefit," says Junea Rocha, co-founder and CEO of Brazi Bites, a line of Brazilian cheese-bread snacks based in Portland, Oregon, and No. 219 on the Inc. 5000. For her, being a Latina woman gives her the ability to stand out from a sea of white males--a common sight when she goes to sales meetings--and has allowed her to grow her company's annual revenue from over half a million dollars in 2014 to more than $12.9 million last year.

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Building a business as a Latino entrepreneur

Claudia Ramos, graphic designer and illustrator from North Hollywood, California, dreams of turning her side business, Claudia Ramos Designs, into a full-time gig. Her dreams are specific: She’d like to see her work and that of other Latina artists sold in her very own shop. Ramos, who was born in El Salvador, currently works for Hasbro as a fashion graphic designer by day and (after her seven-year-old daughter goes to bed) on her side business by night.

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Ramona Ferreyra: The Latina entrepreneur promoting Hispanic heritage and culture through micro-fashion

For Ramona Ferreyra, showing pride in your heritage and community starts at an early age.

A Dominican-American born and raised in the New York City borough of Manhattan, Ferreyra said her family had a strong commitment to making sure she and her siblings connected with and upheld their Dominican culture. For example, as a child, Ferreyra would often participate in heritage festivals and parades, perform in front of crowds, and take dance classes at the request of her mother.

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Friday, January 18, 2019

22 Inspiring Business Quotes from Real, Successful Entrepreneurs

It requires a lot to be successful in business: a good product or service, financial acumen, the right connections and capital to keep things running are just a few of the tangible requirements.

But the soft-skills required to maintain resilience in the face of overwhelming odds, overcome adversity and recover from failure cannot be discounted.

What are the mindsets that keep entrepreneurs going against all odds?
We reached out to the wide-world of business owners for their mantras, inspirational quotes and advice about how to do what they do.

The Power of Passion, Purpose and Creativity
Entrepreneurs and business owners have the rare opportunity to do something they truly love – the opportunity to be a force for good in the world instead of a cog in the machine.

Keep this in mind when the journey inevitably gets tough.

1. “Everyone has their own reasons for starting their own business. But don’t choose other people’s reasons; choose your own.”
Simon Dlugowski, Founder of

2. “If you do what you love, you are more likely to be better at what you do. Don’t choose your career path based on other people’s expectations. Have faith in yourself and your judgement. Work hard and do what you enjoy. If not, you will have to live with the lingering feeling of wondering what could have been.”
Charles Dugan, Founder of American Image Displays

3. “The passion and desire you have to bring something into this world was given to you for a reason. You were meant to do the work that drives you and compels you to create. Never forget that the world needs exactly what you have to give, and it won’t be complete without it.”
Jessica Kinsey, Founder of Prodigy & Co

4. “Let your mind wander at the right time. Daydreaming makes people more productive because it taps into the subconscious and encourages creativity. You just have to learn how to do it well. Think of as many things as you can for an hour, when you do that, you find solutions to problems.”
Stephen Constantine, Founder of YouMap

5. “Go out into the world. Go into the homes and workplaces and quiet places of real people with real challenges. Watch and listen. There we will learn what the actual challenges are we as founders can help solve.”
Matthew Cooper, Co-Founder and CEO of EarnUp

6. “When you start a business, the goal is not to make money. That should be the last goal on your mind actually. Instead, you should start a business because you love what you do.”
AJ Saleem, Academic Director at Suprex Tutors Houston

7. “You are never too small and ordinary to make a difference. A seamstress named Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat and move to the back of the bus. A shipyard electrician named Lech Walesa led the movement that threw the Russians out of Poland and later became its president. Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield knew nothing about ice cream or business and they started a company that showed it was possible for businesses to change the world. I own a one-person social entrepreneurship consulting business based in a farmhouse, and I personally started the movement that saved a mountain. If you think you’re too small to have impact, hang out with a mosquito. Step into your greatness—it’s waiting for you!”
Shel Horowitz, Going Beyond Sustainability

The Power of Your Mindset
Henry Ford famously said, “Whether you think you can or you can’t, you’re right!” The power of your mindset when it comes to your success cannot be dismissed. Keep these quotes in mind:

8. “Entrepreneurs face obstacles from all sides, day in and day out, but the greatest battle entrepreneurs fight is over mindset. No competitor is as dangerous as your own doubts or complacency. Make positivity and enthusiasm your highest priority, and you’ll find ways to take care of all the rest. I can tell you with 100% certainty that the days I’ve gotten up and attacked my work with a positive attitude, I’ve made progress. On the days when I’m feeling low, letting the doubts and frustrations eat away at my mindset, I see only a fraction of the results. Entrepreneurship is a battle waged in the mind.”
Brian Davis, Director of Education, SparkRental

9. “The only difference between fear and excitement is the story that you tell yourself. Tell yourself a story that will move you forward.”
Laura Huckabee-Jennings, Owner of Transcend

10. “I’m a true believer in the Laws of Attraction. What you think about, you bring about. Say to yourself, ‘In 2018, I will…’ and write it in a notebook or somewhere you’ll see it often. Remind yourself that running a small business is something that you want.”
Denise Marcelin Pringle of Denmar Consulting LLC  

The Power of Your People
The reason many entrepreneurs start a business is because they have a natural inclination to go it alone. This quote is a reminder not to let that be your downfall.

11. “Don’t let your doubts get in the way of your success. As a business owner, it’s important to utilize a support group who shares the same vision as you. This network is what will help you get through the difficult times, and help you celebrate your wins.”
Katie Krawcyzk, Founder of 19 IDEAS

Prepare to Persevere
No matter how lucky you are, no matter how talented you are, your business will not succeed unless you keep going.

12. “A small boy or girl selling lemonade has a business. A creative entrepreneur with a business plan only has a paper.”
Katie Smith, CEO of Skip Hire Isleworth

13. “Many refuse to step up to life’s plate for fear of striking out. However only those willing to risk a strike out are given the opportunity to hit a home run. Whatever you do, just keep swinging.”
Kelly Bertog, Founder of Six-Figure Sponsorships

14. “No matter how hard it gets, continue providing value upfront and continue delivering on your promises, and eventually you will be successful.”
Simon Dlugowski, Founder of

15. “Entrepreneurship is being on a mission where nothing can stop you. It will take twice as long as you’d hoped, cost exceedingly more than you’d ever budgeted and will be more challenging than anything you’ll ever try but if you give it your all and refuse to give up, you can trust it will be the ride of a lifetime.”
Lori Cheek, Founder/ CEO of Cheekd

16. “Persistence and ambition almost always beat out talent. Many startups and companies fail simply because they give up too early. Success isn’t achieved by avoiding failure, but instead finding the determination to work past it.”
Sophie Knowles, Founder & CEO of PDF Pro

The Power of Failure
You are going to fail before you truly succeed. Your perspective, and understanding failure’s role in success, is paramount to overcoming it.

17. “You don’t know how far you can rise until you are knocked to the ground.”
Ted Jenkin, Co-CEO and Founder oXYGen Financial 

18. “Failure happens not when you don’t succeed the first time but when you stop trying the last time.”
David Burckhard, PicturePoint On-line

19. “Fear of failure is something as an entrepreneur I am constantly battling against. As an entrepreneur, you are constantly trying new things and pushing the envelope. If you are not failing, you aren’t trying hard enough. Often when my team is hesitant to take action in fear of failure, I am known to say ‘It might not work. You might fail. But I rather fail at something that has potential than succeed as something with none.’”
Warren Struhl, Owner of Successories

20. “The best way I know to recover from entrepreneurial failures is to rely on your support group. This could be any combination of friends or family. They might not be able to give you any game-changing solution to your problem, but as long as they aren’t there to question or criticize you, they should help you at a personal level with their love and support. Simply getting away from your problem for a day or even a few hours could prove invaluable.”
Peter Carson, President, Extranet User Manager

21. “Let rejection be the fuel for your motivation because on the road to your dreams, nothing should stop you.”
Dale Noelle, Founder & CEO of TRUE Model Management

Enjoy the Journey
As a business-owner, it’s only natural for you to focus on results. But focusing only on the results is one of the fastest ways to burn out.

22. “Entrepreneurship is like a bike ride. Some paths are familiar, others take you through new or rocky terrain. Some people seem to travel very far quickly, while others struggle to make it up the first hill. Each journey is different, sometimes by choice (like where to ride) and sometimes by chance (like inclement weather). Every rider has a different set up uphill climbs and downhill cruises ahead of them. Sometimes you’ll ride uphill and into the wind and it’ll feel like the world is fighting against you. Every forward motion will be hard fought and difficult to achieve. But that only makes the crest of the mountain that much more sweet of a victory when you get there. 

Other times you’ll be pedaling downhill and feel invincible, like you own the streets and nothing can stop you. These are the times to stay humble and keep pedaling. Realize that you’ve worked hard to get here, but just because the path is working in your favor right now doesn’t mean it will always stay that way. Keep your head down and pedal because you could be riding into another uphill battle and need to keep your momentum.

We all have different paths and some of us will go a lot farther than others. It’s not always fair that some people have better bikes than others, but that’s how the world works. Keep your eyes focused on the riders going faster than you and learn from them. But remember that no matter how fast you go, there will always be someone out there passing you, don’t let that discourage you. And lastly remember, while it’s important to travel far, at the end of the road it’s more important to enjoy the path that got you there.”
Matt Ham, President / Owner of Computer Repair Doctor

You Know What’s Even Better Than Business Quotes?
Now that you’re feeling inspired and ready to take your business to the next level, let us help connect you to a lender who might be able to get the resources you need to expand your company or launch your startup.

Written by Dustin Clendenen. Courtesy of

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Albania Rosario >

Albania Rosario, Founder and CEO of Uptown Fashion Week and Creative Director to Fashion Designers of Latin America (FDLA) Interviewed by Laura Rosado

What do you need to be an entrepreneur?  
A decision to take your own path and make a difference.

What inspired you to start your business? 
I noticed the lack of Emergent Latinos in the NY Fashion Week and the Industry as a whole.

How did you finance it?
I was willing to put in every dollar I owned in to make it happen and I learned how to raise financing in different ways.

Does being Hispanic/Latina have any influence on your business? 
Yes and No. The diversity is mostly a challenge, being a young Latina in this country comes with its own obstacles that I had to overcome, For example, English not being my first language was and still is very challenging. No, because the nuts and bolts of running a business disregard your background.

In the face of adversity, how do you decide to drive ahead?  
All I look for is creativity. The designers I work with know that NY is the Fashion Capital of the world, we must bring creativity and unique styles and always keeping our roots involved.

What is the biggest challenge your business has faced? 
The lack of others not being able to see my vision. 

If you could change one thing about your business. What would it be?
I wouldn't change anything, building my own path as I go and see how much we have grown feels very exciting. 

What was your childhood ambition?
To be able to leave a legacy for my family and our future generations.

Tell us about three entrepreneurs that you admire.
Tony Robbins
Oprah Winfrey 
Fern Mallins 

For business meetings, which do you prefer: breakfast, lunch, or dinner?
Breakfast, early In the morning when you are fresh and full of energy.

What sacrifices in your personal life did you have to make in order to become successful in your business?
Time for family and personal life. In general, I sacrifice now so I can have freedom later. 

In addition, I'm married to my career. There is no 9-5 when you are becoming an entrepreneur, you just go and keep going until you get it. 

What is your favorite quote?
"Do not and the take criticism from someone who has not constructed anything."

The biggest mistake made?
Everything Happens for a reason.

Do you consider yourself an innovator? Why?
I broke into an industry that's has been well-established way before me, and brought in a fresh perspective. 

Description of the company
FDLA  — What has become the signature multicultural fashion event of New York City, FDLA founded its development on providing exposure for established, emerging and upcoming clothing designers from around the world in an effort to extend meaningful fashion trade. Accomplishing this has been an undertaking in nurturing opportunities for the publicity of international talents whose creative abilities are overflowing but financial resources are not.

FDLA prides itself on continuing its work throughout the year to build bridges engaging community inclusion by leading events, social activities and diversity initiatives. 

With the top-notch guest list and international media coverage, FDLA reaches a multitude of consumers and continues to grow each year.
Last season’s show in September was a major success, providing to the fashion community that FDLA must be considered a player in the New York City world of fashion and around the world.

FDLA is fast becoming the place to be for socialites, celebrities and those seeking to discover the next big name. 

With a number of designers bringing new thoughts and ideas from around the world, FDLA has now established itself as a crucial stop on the fashion circuit around the world bringing Latin Designers to international platforms around the world such as South Korea, Switzerland, Dubai, and counting...

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Partnership issues faced by entrepreneurs. Free event in New York City

A free moderated discussion about partnership issues faced by entrepreneurs - where to find partners, how to screen them, what to compensate them, and what arrangements should be made. What are some equity issues faced, what are some challenges for disengagement? Entrepreneurs and potential entrepreneurs invited to share with each other in a educational setting. Attendees must sign up to get in building -

Monday, July 24, 2017

Today's Must-Reads For Entrepreneurs

Hispanic consumers are staying home: "Apparel and accessories have also been hurt, according to NPD data through March. Food and small appliances, though, haven’t been affected, Cohen said. The decline in purchases among Hispanics comes as U.S. consumer spending overall has increased amid rising confidence, low unemployment and wage gains. Sneakers are taking a hit with purchases by Hispanics declining at a high-teen percentage this year, according to Matt Powell, also an analyst at NPD. 

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