No era in history has seen so many successful Hispanic entrepreneurs thriving as they do today. The U.S. Census Bureau predicts that 1 in 3 Americans will be Hispanic by the year 2060. As a result, count on even more Hispanic entrepreneurial success in the future.
Most Successful Hispanic Entrepreneurs
Take a look at 16 of the most successful Hispanic entrepreneurs in the United States.
Alberto ‘Beto’ Perez (Zumba Fitness)
Zumba Fitness took the exercise world by storm. Consider the last couple of decades. Beto Perez started the dancing aerobics business back in 2001. He began his career as an aerobics instructor in Columbia. And later came up with Zumba while improvising new exercise techniques for a class he was taking in America. You’ll now find Zumba Fitness classes available in around 200,000 locations in over 180 countries around the world. Estimates claim 15 million people currently take Zumba Fitness classes.
Jorge Perez (The Related Group)
Argentinean-born Jorge Pérez arrived in the United States in 1968. He just recently graduated from high school at the time. He settled in Miami where he set about building an affordable housing empire. Perez co-founded The Related Group with New York developer Stephen Ross. These days the company focuses on high-end condominiums. Perez has reached billionaire status. As a result, people now call him ‘the condo king of South Florida’.
Carlos Castro (Todos Supermarket)
El Salvador-born Carlos Castro founded the Todos Supermarket chain back in 1990. It became the first supermarket chain that directly catered to Latino shoppers in the Washington D.C. area. Castro proves an extra special case. He originally fled El Salvador and entered the US illegally. Officials deported him but he tried again. This time he legally and successfully immigrated and soon moved his whole family to the U.S. And eventually targeted a much-needed business niche.
Marcelo Claure (BrightStar and Sprint)
While Marcelo Claure is perhaps better known as the Chief Executive Officer of Sprint, his entrepreneurial journey actually began with his founding of mobile device distributor BrightStar. It was a massive success and serves over 200 carriers in 50 different countries and currently boasts annual revenues of over $7 billion.
Tony Jimenez (MicroTech)
Jimenez spent 24 years in active military service before beginning his own entrepreneurial journey. He served as a combat veteran and then later worked closely with the Department of Defense on a variety of platform transformation challenges. This work inspired him to found MicroTech who specializes in government and private sector IT issues and is now contracted to work on over a hundred Federal projects.
Maria Contreras-Sweet (ProAmerica Bank)
Originally born in Guadalajara, Mexico, Contreras-Sweet launched ProAmerica to be California’s first commercial bank started by a person of Latino origin in more than 35 years. Not satisfied with this huge success, she also launched Contreras-Sweet Enterprises as a marketing and research solutions company. His clients include the Pacific Gas and Electric Company, the Walt Disney estate and Coca-Cola.
Matias De Tezanos (AutoWeb)
De Tezanos is the CEO of AutoWeb.com which is a pay-per-click marketing network for automobile dealers and manufacturers. He is also something of a serial entrepreneur. He founded Hoteles.com as a hotel reservation site for Spanish speakers, then he created the online advertising network ClickDiario.com, and in 2011 he also founded BrokersWeb.com, a pay-per-click insurance advertising company.
Martha De La Torre (El Clasificado)
De La Torre founded El Clasificado, a directory of classified ads targeted at Latino immigrants back in 1988. She began her own start-up while needing to perform consulting jobs on the side to keep the business going, and she survived by recruiting talented work-study students from a nearby high school to help her run the business. The web presence was initiated in 1996 and it currently receives around 24 million page views every month.
Jordi Munoz (3D Robotics)
Munoz moved to the United States from Tijuana in 2007 and came to prominence after hacking the sensors of his Nintendo Wii controller to help create the first auto-piloted drone. After uploading a video of his antics online, Munoz was suddenly in demand to use his skills to help others with their projects. Still, an attractive investment opportunity, Munoz’s company 3D Robotics has raised something close to $159 million in venture capital.
Sofia Vergara (Entertainment)
The Colombian born actress is ranked the second World’s Highest-Paid Actresses of 2019 earning a whopping 44.1 million dollars. The star of the sitcom Modern Family is a co-founder of Latino World Entertainment, a multi-million-dollar media and talent agency.
Vergara has signed onto a flurry of endorsement deals in English and Spanish that continues to provide her with a slew of multimillion dollars checks. Her new denim brand, Sofía Jeans by Sofía Vergara; a fragrance line; and furniture line, Rooms to Go, is among her more lucrative entrepreneurial ventures.
Rea Ann Silva (Cosmetics)
Rea Ann Silva is a makeup artist and inventor of the iconic Beautyblender. Silva started selling Beautyblender, an edgeless sponge used to apply foundation, in 2002. In the summer of 2018, Beautyblender’s massive success enabled Silva to launch her own foundation line, Bounce. It comes in 40 shades — a far cry from the seven to 20 shades when she originally started.
The Beautyblender sold 9 million the past year and over 50 million since 2009. As a result, he famous product has been used by celebrities like Kim Kardashian West, Heidi Klum, and more. Now, Silva’s company says it’s projected to do $215 million in retail sales this year alone.
Geisha Williams (Energy)
Geisha Williams is CEO and President of PG&E leads, one of the largest combined natural gas and electric energy companies in the United States. PG&E employs more than 20,000 employees delivering some of the nation’s cleanest energy to nearly 16 million people in Northern and Central California. Williams is the first Latina to ever lead a Fortune 500 company.
Since joining PG&E, Williams has overseen the company’s move to bring nearly 33% of its energy from renewable sources. As a result, the power company has also become a leader in renewables integration, grid modernization, and smart-grid technologies, while also achieving the best electric reliability in company history.
Adriana Cisneros (Media)
Adriana Cisneros serves as CEO of Cisneros. This third-generation family-owned business focuses on media, digital and interactive, and real estate. She also serves as President of Fundación Cisneros. The non-profit organization dedicates efforts to improving education in the region.
Cisneros also serves in other capacities. For example, she is the co-chair of Endeavor Miami, a director and executive committee member of the Board of the International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, a trustee of the Paley Center for Media, and a board member of MoMA’s Latin American acquisitions committee. She recently joined the boards of Parrot Analytics, The Knight Foundation, and the University of Miami.
Jessica Alba (Beauty Care)
Jessica Alba is the founder of The Honest Company and Honest Beauty, businesses that provide more than 101 safe and effective products for baby, personal care, cleaning and more. She’s a globally recognized business leader, entrepreneur, advocate, actress and New York Times bestselling author of The Honest Life, a practical guide for parents to create a safe and healthy life for their families. As a result, Alba was among the top twenty of Fast Company’s 100 most creative people in business, and one of Fortune’s 10 most powerful women entrepreneurs.
The Honest Company has donated over twelve million products and over 15,000 employee participation hours through its Honest to Goodness program.
Pete Maldonado (Food and Beverage)
Pete Maldonado co-founded Naples, Florida-based dry meat snacks maker Chomps. And he now serves as CEO. Launched in 2012, Chomps makes a diverse line of all-natural meat snack products. For example, the company makes paleo-friendly, gluten-free, Whole30-approved and non-GMO beef jerky sticks.
Chomps was recently ranked No. 62 on the Inc. 5000: The Most Successful Companies in America. This is the second appearance in a row on the Inc. 5000 for CHOMPS. The brand made a debut at No. 124 in 2018. The ascent to No. 62 is the result of more than 4,400% growth in revenue over the last three years. As a result, the company earnings in 2018 reached 21 million dollars
This article, "15 of the Most Successful Hispanic Entrepreneurs" was first published on Small Business Trends