This is the third year that the Des Moines Business Record has devoted an issue to profiling the metro area’s entrepreneurs. This year we’ve focused on immigrant entrepreneurs.
Our four featured entrepreneurs are originally from India, Colombia, Somalia and Kenya. One of them, Tej Dhawan, has been an advocate for loosening immigration laws to allow more skilled workers to either stay here and work, or to come here and fill jobs that are in demand.
Immigrants are more likely to start and own businesses than people who were born here, according to a study done in 2012 by the U.S. Small Business Administration.
About 10.5 percent of the immigrant population owns a business, compared with 9.3 percent of native-born Americans, and that gap is widening.
A common thread runs through the stories of this year’s immigrant entrepreneurs – a desire to help their communities through their businesses and their personal commitments.
Principal, StartupCity Des Moines
Owner, Diversity Insurance, Cinco de Mayo,
Cinco de Mayo West, La Reina 1260
Owner, Des Moines Daycare
General Manager, Des Moines Daycare
Previously profiled entrepreneurs
Founder, Veel Hoeden LLC
Founder, Hatchlings Inc.
Founder, Bawte Inc.
President, Growers Edge
Keith & Tomi Nelson
Owner, Kazzoinks LLC
Principal, StartUpCity Des Moines
President, Orchestrate Management Associates