“It will help to enable members of the Hispanic community too be able to afford starting a business and go after their dreams,” said Eastfield Mall property manager Dave Thompson.
The Eastfield Mall and Massachusetts Latino Chamber of Commerce are working together to provide a local, Hispanic-Latino-owned business space inside the mall for one month at no cost.
The mall features a pop-up shop every month that is expected to bring in 12 new Hispanic-Latino “micro-businesses” this year.
Massachusetts is home to more than 30,000 Hispanic-Latino businesses, 3,800 of which are employer firms that generate over $4.2 billion in annual revenue and create more than 27,000 jobs, according to Betty Francisco CEO of Boston Impact Initiative, co-founder of Amplify Latinx.
“Our economic recovery and growth depends upon the success of Latino businesses and the development of Latino talent in high-growth industries that are in need of diverse talent,” wrote Francisco in an opinion article calling for investments in Hispanic-Latino and Black businesses.
Hispanic-Latino consumer purchasing power is $1.7 trillion today and projected to grow to $2.6 trillion in just three years, according to the LDC 2020 Latino GDP Report.
State Representative Orlando Ramos secured $100,000 to help fund the Pop-Up Shop Program. “Small and microbusinesses have struggled in the pandemic,” Ramos said. “Many were owned by Black and Latino business owners.”
Businesses can use the grants of about $1,000 to launch a marketing campaign, hire an accountant or cover unexpected expenses as the COVID recovery drags on, said Andrew Melendez, director of the Massachusetts Latino Chamber of Commerce.
“Black and Latino micro-businesses are the Commonwealths’ economic engine, and now more than ever, they are in need of direct support with capital infusion and tools to continue to be successful post-pandemic,” Melendez said.
Cover Photo: ‘Our Modern Love‘, candle and craft vendor, (Credit: Eastfield Mall)