Fuerza Local Arizona and Interise Launch Initiative for Latino Businesses to Close the Latino Entrepreneurship Gap



Accelerate Latinx powered by Interise and Fuerza Local Arizona, known locally as Nivel Ejecutivo, is part of a nationwide pilot program

Phoenix, AZ - [July 15, 2019] - Fuerza Local, a program of Local First Arizona Foundation, and Interise, a national economic development nonprofit, announced the launch of a pilot program, called Accelerate Latinx, powered by Interise and Fuerza Local, known locally as Nivel Ejecutivo, (Translation: Next Level Executive). The program is a new initiative aimed at building a more diverse and inclusive economy by supporting the growth of established Latino-owned businesses. Using Interise’s award-winning curriculum, the StreetWise’MBA’™, the program is designed to scale established small businesses for local job and wealth creation. Nivel Ejecutivo will provide local business owners with practical knowledge, management know-how, access to capital and contracting opportunities.

"Nivel Ejecutivo is the logical next step for our Fuerza Local program graduates who are looking to fast track growth for their companies. We have worked with over 400 successful Latino-owned businesses to provide ongoing support and mentorship to our alumni, and we are thrilled to be able to offer this advanced curriculum to many of our most advanced graduates," said Kimber Lanning, Executive Director, Local First Arizona Foundation.

“Latino-owned businesses contribute over $700 billion to the American economy every year,” said Darrell Byers, CEO of Interise. “And while Latinos start businesses at a higher rate than non-Latinos, they start smaller and stay smaller compared to other businesses. This initiative will contribute to Interise’s ongoing work in economic development through small business, informing both research and programming to close the Latino entrepreneurship gap.” 

Nivel Ejecutivo will also focus on preparing firms for contract opportunities with local government and anchor institutions by exposing participants to the processes, strategies, and requirements necessary to become a successful vendor. 

Eligible Latino business owners must have operated their business for at least three years, grossing $250k-$5M in annual revenue, with at least one full-time employee other than the owner. Interested small businesses can apply online at: www.nivelejecutivo.fuerzalocal.org.

The program is set to launch in September.  

Fuerza Local is joining the Greater Philadelphia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, The Indy Chamber Hispanic Business Council, and the City of Houston Office of Business Opportunity on this year-long initiative, with funding support from the Kauffman Foundation.


About Local First Arizona Foundation
Local First Arizona Foundation (LFAF) is an award-winning organization focused on community and economic development throughout Arizona in order to build self-sufficient, healthy and prosperous communities. LFAF is creating a movement that has proven results across a wide variety of measurables including youth retention, job creation and economic opportunity. More information is available at localfirstazfoundation.org

About Interise
Interise builds diverse and inclusive local economies through small business development, supporting the growth of minority-owned small businesses and small businesses located in low- and moderate-income communities. Interise’s award-winning StreetWise ‘MBA’™ uses a peer-learning method to provide business owners with the knowledge, know-how, and networks necessary to achieve financial stability and second-stage growth. As Interise companies grow, they contribute to local job creation and build community wealth. Interise companies historically create new jobs at 5x the rate of the private sector, and are responsible for the creation of over 30,000 new jobs. Interise partners with government agencies, anchor institutions, and business associations to make locally branded StreetWise ‘MBA’™ programs available in 75+ cities, nationwide. Strategic Growth Partners include the Kauffman Foundation, the Surdna Foundation, and the Prudential Foundation.