The number of Native Hawaiian- and Other Pacific Islander-owned businesses increased 31% between 2002 and 2007, to 37,957 businesses. These businesses generated $6.5 billion in receipts in 2007, a 52% increase from 2002. In contrast, the total number of non-minority firms increased by 9% between 2002 and 2007and their receipts rose 21%. Average employment per firm with employees also increased from 8 employees per Native Hawaiian & Other Pacific Islander firm with employees in 2002 to 9 employees per firm with employees in 2007.
Native Hawaiian & Other Pacific Islander firms are also an engine of job creation, with paid employment growing by 32% from 29,319 workers to 38,750 workers, compared to less than 1% growth for non-minority-owned firms. These firms paid competitive wages to their employees. The average payroll at Native Hawaiian & Other Pacific Islander-owed firms per employee increased by 17 percent from about $28,000 in payroll per employee in 2002 to $33,000 in payroll per employee in 2007. The average payroll per employee for non-minority firms was $35,000 in 2007.
The Native Hawaiian & Other Pacific Islander business community continues to grow in number at a fast rate, yet their true economic potential is still unrealized. At MBDA, we measure entrepreneurial parity of minority-owned firms. Unfortunately, there is still an entrepreneurial parity gap between Native Hawaiian & Other Pacific Islander firms and the share of the Native Hawaiian & Other Pacific Islander adult population, which was 0.3 percent in 2007. If Native Hawaiian & Other Pacific Islander-owned firms would have reached parity with their share of the adult Native Hawaiian & Other Pacific Islander population in 2007, there would have been 83,000 firms (instead of 37,957) generating $34.6 billion in gross receipts (instead of $6.5 billion), and creating 179,000 jobs (instead of 38,750).
There are approximately 38,000 sole proprietorships in the Native Hawaiian & Other Pacific Islander business community. MBDA’s goal is to help grow those in emerging industries and with the potential for size and scale, as well as encourage job creation among these firms.