Women make up a significant portion of the workforce and business owners in northern Louisiana. According to the latest statistics, 48.7 percent of workers and 45.8 percent of businesses are owned by women. Veterans also have a presence in the region, with 5 percent of workers and 6 percent of businesses being owned by them. Racial minorities make up 34.1 percent of workers and 27.3 percent of businesses.
In total, there are 464,527 small businesses in Louisiana, representing 53.6 percent of all businesses in the state. Men own the majority of these businesses, with 194,000 businesses being owned by them. Women own 179,693 small businesses, but only 12,693 of them have employees on the payroll. However, there are 23,196 small businesses that are jointly owned by men and women.
The Tax Foundation ranks Louisiana 41st in its State Business Fiscal Climate Index report. The maximum corporate income tax rate is 8 percent and the sales tax is 4.45 percent. Before the Louisiana Purchase, some German families had settled in a rural area along the lower Mississippi Valley, then known as the German coast. These families were assimilated to the Cajun and Creole communities.
In 1840, New Orleans was the third largest and wealthiest city in the United States and the largest city in the south. Its bustling port and commercial economy attracted numerous Irish, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, and German immigrants, most of whom were Catholic. This added to the Roman Catholic culture already present in southern Louisiana. New Orleans is also home to significant Dutch, Greek, and Polish communities as well as Jewish populations from various nationalities.
It is reported that more than 10,000 Maltese arrived in Louisiana in the early 20th century. Croats are credited with developing the state's commercial oyster industry. The Creole people of Louisiana are divided into two racial divisions. The term 'Creole' was first given to French colonists born in Louisiana when it was a colony of France; in Spanish, the term for natives was 'Creole'.
White Creoles are predominantly of French and Spanish descent due to immigration and settlement patterns. As the slave population grew in Louisiana, there were also enslaved blacks who could be called Creoles; this term was used to describe those born in the colony. Starting in the 18th century, French colonists began to settle along the coast and founded New Orleans. They established institutions of French culture and language and imported thousands of slaves from West African tribes who spoke several different languages.
Through a process known as creolization, slaves developed a Louisiana Creole dialect that incorporated French and African forms which were adopted by colonists to communicate with them; this dialect persisted beyond slavery. The professional, scientific, and technical services sectors have the highest number of small businesses operating within them compared to other industries in Louisiana (53,619). The Louisiana Business Hub is a platform for entrepreneurs and business owners looking for resources to start or grow their businesses in Louisiana. The LED's Diversity in Entrepreneurship Initiative is implemented in partnership with the Edward Lowe Foundation and aims to accelerate second-stage business growth for minority-owned and women-owned businesses in Louisiana.
It offers seminars and courses for small and emerging construction companies that help build a solid knowledge base within the construction industry. The Pathway to Assist Veteran Entrepreneurs (PAVE) program offers veterans living in Louisiana an opportunity to gain knowledge and skills necessary to effectively start or manage a business. The business and business management sector is the smallest industry when it comes to investment for small businesses; only 303 companies currently operate within it. Louisiana offers several tax credits for existing companies with operating facilities within its borders that establish or continue research and development within the state; these include a tax credit of up to 30 percent as well as a 25 percent tax credit for individual investors investing in early-stage wealth-generating companies seeking start-up or expansion capital.
Louisiana has many advantages that make it an excellent area for doing business for entrepreneurs; from startups to small business growth and expansion, there are numerous educational, management, and financial programs available that foster small business opportunities. Approximately 42,673 small businesses operating within these sectors have no employees while 10,151 have 1-19 employees; 795 have 20-499 employees. The program will allow veterans with a 51 percent stake in a company as well as active or reserve military members or Gold Star spouses to apply for certification that recognizes their businesses. The program will also create a searchable database for anyone looking to sponsor veteran-owned businesses or those owned by active duty or reserve military personnel or Gold Star spouses.
These are some small business statistics from Louisiana that should help entrepreneurs understand what it takes to run a business within its borders.