Tuesday, July 6, 2004

Knoxville businessmen form Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of East Tennessee

"'Our mission is to bridge the gap between mainstream businesses and Hispanic businesses. We want to create opportunities for entrepreneurs in the Hispanic community to start new businesses and help existing Hispanic businesses to continue growing,' said [Aurelio] Valeriano, president and CEO of Southeast Construction LLC in Knoxville and chairman of the new chamber."

"'Obviously they are an important and growing segment of the community,' said county government spokesman Mike Cohen, who met with the Hispanic chamber organizers."

"The growth of the Hispanic population prompted county government to launch a Spanish-language version of its Web site, www.knoxcounty.org, earlier this year."

"Another indicator of the growing economic clout of the Hispanic community is its buying power statewide. The purchasing clout of Hispanic consumers in Tennessee will zoom from an estimated $2.9 billion in 2003 to approximately $6.5 billion in 2008, according to a report published by the University of Georgia's Terry School Business and the Simon S. Selig Center for Economic Growth."


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