Federal Grant To Help Hispanic Businesses

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The U.S. Small Business Administration has awarded a $95,000 grant to the University of Nevada's Small Business Development Center in Reno to benefit Hispanic businesses.

The money will be used to develop the most comprehensive Hispanic economic and demographic database available in Northern Nevada, school officials said.

Nevada's Hispanic population has been booming for more than 30 years, growing on average 2.5 times the national rate.

The database promises to be a vital aid in the future success of Hispanic businesses in not only in Northern Nevada but the entire country, said Sam Males, state director of the NSBDC.

"While a wide variety of general information exists at the national level, very little exists at the local level, especially any type of specific Hispanic business information such as business types, business locations, marketing strategies and customer orientation, just to name a few," Males said.

In 2000, Nevada's Hispanic population was 393,970, the 14th largest in the United States. Northern Nevada's Hispanic population grew from 30,336 in 1990 to 72,792 in 2000, while Washoe County's population grew from 22,959 to 56,304. By 2010, Washoe County is projected to have a Hispanic population of 86,924.