Build a Business
Around Your ART

REPLAY: Nopalera Founder Sandra Velasquez Says If She Can Do It, So Can YOU

Mexican-American CEO Sandra Velasquez is a bona fide, tug-at-your-heart, success story.

She launched her luxe cactus-based botanicals brand during the pandemic (when even her own parents thought she was nuts) and is now slated to bring in a sweet half a million dollars in revenue.

But things weren’t always easy for this single mama and lead singer. Sandra was a longtime musician who was juggling parenting, musical gigs, and her day jobs (PLURAL) when she discovered soapmaking and started dreaming of creating her own bath and body brand. She had her “a-ha” moment back home in San Diego eating her mother’s eggs and nopal (cactus.) Cactus has similar healing properties as aloe vera but was often overlooked—until now. Sandra recognized the power of this native, regenerating, and unsung plant and made it the centerpiece of her bath and body business, Nopalera.

She was ready to launch when the pandemic hit, but she pushed through anyway. And soon, ...

Continue Reading...

REPLAY: Shop Latinx Founder & CEO Brittany Chavez Wants You to Grow Your Business NOW!

When it comes to growing a business, Brittany Chavez has laser-focused vision. No excuses.

Don’t have a mentor to guide you? Create your own! 

No time or money to do focus groups? No problem! 

Make mistakes along the way? Correct your course.

Don’t know what you’re doing? Ask questions.

Brittany has spent the last five years building Shop Latinx, the first curated e-marketplace for Latinx creative entrepreneurs. Shop Latinx offers offers beauty, skincare, apparel, and lifestyle products to the fastest-growing market in the U.S., Millennial and Gen Z Latinas. She started it as a side-hustle, surveyed potential customers while driving them as a rideshare driver and has since built a team and secured funding. 

She knows what it takes to build a business and the founder and CEO is happy to share her journey so that you can learn from her wins and missteps—and build your own success!

She wants you to know you are not alone. You got this! 

...
Continue Reading...

REPLAY: Julissa Prado Talks Being a Self-Funded, Latina-owned Business

For Julissa Prado, starting a business was a childhood dream - and an act of serving her community. Growing up the Los Angeles native played with natural ingredients, creating concoctions for managing her curly hair and sharing her mixtures with other women in her neighborhood. Years later her company Rizos Curls launched in 2017, urgently addressing the hair care needs of women in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria devastated the island. 

“I love to always say that a business is simply a solution to a problem,” said Julissa during our interview last week. “Rizos Curls was literally my solution to my own personal problem of not knowing what products to use to style my own hair.”

Today Rizos Curls can be found on shelves at Target, Ulta Beauty, and Walmart in 57 countries, generating $1 million within its first year. 

We connected with the entrepreneur and beauty influencer during a live event, where she shared how she built a thriving beauty brand...

Continue Reading...

JEFA NATION is Here

We are looking for the next Latina mogul-in-the-making, and we've partnered with Eva Longoria, America Ferrera and a few other folks to help us find her.

First, some stats--courtesy of our friends at Support Latino Business:

  • Latino/x small business owners are the fastest growing group of entrepreneurs in the United States
  • Latinas lead 44% of Latino/x small businesses that range from restaurants, online apparel shops, beauty and lifestyle products to financial services
  • Latino/x-owned businesses contribute over $800 billion to the American economy every year
  • These entrepreneurs are often unable to scale at the same rates in comparison to their non-Latino/x counterparts
  • The COVID pandemic has made this discrepancy even larger

This is why we are so proud and excited to announce JEFA NATION, a contest to support Latina entrepreneurship launching on the third annual Support Latino Business Day, which is today: September 14, 2021.

In order to be eligible,...

Continue Reading...

REPLAY: John Lynn Wants You to Get Your Money

When it comes to funding a new business, John Lynn has a 360-degree view.

Started a business and got funding himself? Check.

Helped raise money for a venture fund? Check.

Selected start-ups for one of the best-known accelerators out there? Check.

Set up accelerators himself, and seen how hundreds of businesses lifted off? Uh, yeah.

In fact, over the last decade-plus, John has gone from entrepreneur himself (yes, he’s been there!) to becoming a guru in the overall accelerator space, helping grow businesses just like yours over and over again.

 John is the co-founder of Cela, which builds startup accelerators with the world’s most influential institutions, including investor groups, universities, governments, and corporations. John has spoken at theWorld Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, as well as in multiple locations within China, throughout Japan, Haiti, Aruba, and the USA. His work has been published in Forbes, TechCrunch, and at the Nasdaq.

The bottom line:...

Continue Reading...

REPLAY: Shobana Mani Talks Start-Ups, Mentoring, and Why You Should Launch NOW

There can’t be too many people in the world who’ve both juggled numbers as a managing director at Goldman Sachs and handsewn textiles for ateliers working with designers like Marc Jacobs and Proenza Schouler.

But Shobana Mani has.

“I've always been two things: a commercial person and a creative person,” says the Parsons Entrepreneurial Academy mentor.  “My grandfather was a dyer in India, so I grew up among textile looms and seeing saris woven in front of his house. But then I did my master's degree at the London School of Economics, and in my first career, I worked in investment banking.”

When, after a dozen years, she found herself drawn back towards creative work—dreaming of launching a sustainable womenswear brand—she approached it with the finance sector’s rigor.

“A lot of people said to me, ‘You already have this background, why don't you just start the brand?’ But I just don't believe in that. I...

Continue Reading...

Interview with Arlan Hamilton: Entrepreneurship is a Winding Path

Think of the most successful entrepreneurs that come to your mind. You may immediately think of their large social media following, their beautiful website, or their high profile connections. What you don’t see are the sleepless nights, the struggle and the triumphs along the way leading up to their massive success. You know, that not-so-glamorous part of the journey. 

What if the most challenging parts of your entrepreneurial journey were the same parts that will help you grow your business? 

Arlan Hamilton proves there is power in sharing your authentic story and why being an industry outsider is your greatest asset. As the CEO of Backstage Capital, she helps underserved founders of color gain resources for their dream. She is the author of It's About Damn Time, but before then she was building her business while homeless. 

We had the opportunity to connect with the author, podcaster, and founder one-on-one last week, where she shared her...

Continue Reading...

I Lost Rights to My Own Name: How to Safeguard Your IP

Do you know if your intellectual property is protected? 

Legal considerations aren't usually something entrepreneurs get excited about when they're first starting their business. After all, it's way more fun creating products and finding a customer base who resonates with and appreciates what you do, right?

But, failure to at least think through how you're protecting your work can lead to a lot of problems that can bring your business to a grinding halt - or, worst-case scenario, lose you the rights to your own name or your creative work.

Most entrepreneurs figure this out the hard way... 

But in this panel discussion, you can tap into the experiences of three very successful entrepreneurs who faced - and OVERCAME - early IP issues and don't want you to make the same mistakes. 

Meet the Panelists:

Kay Unger is the CEO of Kay Unger Design and Chair Emerita of Parsons School of Design. She's a fashion designer, entrepreneur and philanthropist, and top designer...

Continue Reading...

How to Craft a Value Proposition for Your Creative Business

Your creative work is so unique. But how do you convey that value to customers and clients? That's where your value proposition comes into play!

A value proposition is a concise way to describe the unique value you, your company, and your product or service will provide your customer or client. It's a way to differentiate yourself from all the other creatives and creative businesses out there. But it goes even further than that. A strong value proposition allows you to attract the people who truly align with what you're all about. 

Now, actually writing a concise statement that accomplishes all that can definitely feel overwhelming, and that's why we brought in PwC strategy and design expert John Jones to lead an interactive workshop guiding our members through writing their very own unique value proposition tree. 

John has 20 years experience in service design, product design, strategic planning and brand development across multiple consumer touchpoints...

Continue Reading...

The Easiest Way to Write a Business Plan as an Artist

As a creative, the very thought of writing a business plan can be well... intimidating as all HECK. Not to mention most business plans seem more like mini books filled with numbers and charts and investor-friendly language. Without business training, it can be hard to figure out where to start, and so it becomes one of those things we know we should do, but keep putting off. 

Thing is -- having a great business plan to follow can actually free up your creative mind, by removing any doubts about whether you’re putting your energy into the right activities…
 
...and creating one is FAR simpler than we’re led to believe!
 
You just need a tried-and-true model, and a mentor who can show you how to use it.
 
That's why we brought in award-winning strategist, business advisor, creative executive coach, and mentor, Shani Syphrett-Haynes to show you how to create an easy-but-effective ONE-PAGE business plan that will set you up for...
Continue Reading...
1 2
Close

50% Complete

Two Step

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.