Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Minority Businesses Find Funding in Tulsa Programs

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Minority Businesses Find Funding in Tulsa Programs

Article excerpt

Victor Young returned to Oklahoma because his mother was dying. It's not the happiest way to find a business idea, but that's when Young decided to start his hospice and medical company - New Frontier Hospice.

Young had worked in the pharmaceutical business for about 17 years serving Fortune 1000 companies in North America. But a physician who had known Young for several years suggested hospice care would be an endeavor to pursue. Since starting, Young's company has grown from three employees to 43 with plans to expand into the Oklahoma City market and into Texas.

"I tell my wife and friends that I'm an entrepreneur," he said. "I like taking the risk, taking the challenges and taking care of people. I believe in health care."

Young believes that small businesses are the backbone of Tulsa's economy, and is quick to point out that small businesses make up 70 percent of the tax base in Tulsa.

But starting a small business isn't an easy thing, and it's harder for a member of a minority group.

Finding the credit and capital needed for a business are the two main issues for startups, said Reginald King, manager of the Greenwood Business Resource Centre, an affiliate of the Greenwood Chamber of Commerce. The issue for minority groups is the access to that capital, he said, because minorities don't have the access or history necessary to get the capital that non-minority groups may have.

For minority entrepreneurs, as well as majority entrepreneurs looking to start or grow a business, there is help. Tulsa Economic Development Corporation - as Creative Capital - can provide a loan to a small business owner, said Rose Washington Rentie, the executive director. Through their program, companies looking to expand can obtain funding.

Young utilized Creative Capital to expand New Frontier Hospice. When the company started, it was just the three employees in a small office using computer equipment Young brought from home. …

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