Disproportionate outcomes exist in entrepreneurship based on the identity of the founders. The Hispanic/Latinx population in the U.S. grew by 23% from 2010 to 2020, which represented over half of the total growth in the U.S. population. Yet despite accounting for 19% of the population, Hispanic owned businesses account for only 5.8% of all businesses. Even in low-barrier industries there is underrepresentation, in part because they lack access to education and start-up capital. We are especially interested in understanding how a Hispanic/Latinx identity impacts entrepreneurial outcomes in the low-barrier industry of construction. Since many studies explore the obstacles and barriers in education for Hispanic/Latinx students, this paper explores the challenges in accessing start-up capital in the form of credit. Using a quantitative methodology and Critical Race Theory Framework, we collected data from the Utah Department of Occupational and Professional Licensing to estimate the number of contractor construction companies owned by Hispanic/Latinx founders. We used this data to conduct a survey on entrepreneurs of construction companies in Utah. The survey collected firm data (e.g., cash flows, legal entity, trade, employees, etc.) and owner demographic data (e.g., education, immigration, nationality, phenotype, language, etc). Using Python, the firm and owner demographic data will be used as independent variables for a regression analysis that predicts the cash-basis revenue performance of construction companies. The findings of our research provide alternative methods of financial reporting and credit risk assessment for promoting Latinx entrepreneurship in construction and solving the shortage of affordable housing.
University / Institution: University of Utah
Format: In Person
SESSION C (1:45-3:15PM)
Area of Research: Business
Faculty Mentor: Lyda Bigelow