houston-skylineThough many may joke that Texas is its own country, one thing is clear: if Texas were separate from the United States, it would fare pretty well. Currently, the Lone Star State is the 11th largest economy in the world. Texas has created more private sector jobs in the last 10 years than any other state in the nation and holds additional distinctions: home to the most Fortune 500 company headquarters , the top exporting state in the nation for eight straight years , and one of the lowest tax burdens in the country. Recently, the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council ranked Texas as one of the best states for small business and entrepreneurs in their “Business Tax Index 2010: Best to Worst State Tax Systems for Entrepreneurship and Small Business” report.

Texas is also resilient to economic storms. According to the June 2010 “MetroMonitor: Tracking Economic Recession and Recovery in America’s Largest Metropolitan Areas” report, six Texas metros were ranked among the strongest 21 U.S. economies by the Brookings Institute.

Texas has a young, large, and diverse workforce. As the size of the Hispanic population increases, Hispanic-owned businesses are also growing at a fast pace and assuming an increasingly important role in the state’s economy. Over the next 10 years, Hispanic-owned businesses will be the fastest growing component of the business end-user market in the United States – their rate of growth is expected to be in the 8 percent range- almost three times the rate of overall U.S. firms. Between 1997 and 2002, the number of Hispanic-owned companies nationwide grew 31 percent. In the 2008 Hispanic Business 500, the Top 20 Hispanic businesses in Texas produced revenues of $3.98 billion and employed 14,617 people.
Hispanics aren’t only able workers and a growing employment force, they are flexing their buying power; Hispanic households contributed more than $171 billion to the Texas economy in 2008, and their annual buying power is expected to rise to nearly $252 billion by 2013 – a 47 percent increase in just five years, according to a study by the Selig Center for Economic Growth at the University of Georgia.
Business Procurement:
With a considerable marketplace and billions of dollars in purchasing power, Texas offers plenty of opportunities for vendors of goods and services, including minority- and women-owned businesses.

Texas has a certification program that recognizes minority and women-owned businesses, assisting to increase their business and improve their revenues. The Historically Underutilized Business (HUB) certification , plus registration on the state’s Centralized Master Bidders List, can help businesses win contracts with state agencies which are required to make a good faith effort to purchase goods and services from minority- and woman-owned businesses. In fiscal 2009, 3, 922 Hispanic businesses were certified as HUBs. The state spent about $247 million dollars with Hispanic HUBs, about 27 percent of all HUB spending.Committees

Previous Sessions:

The Texas government has been successful at creating state and local incentive programs to attract businesses into locating in Texas. In 2003, the $295 million Texas Enterprise Fund was created as a “deal-closing” financial incentive program to provide an advantage to Texas sites in competing with other states or foreign nations. In 2005, Texas created the Texas Emerging Technology Fund to provide money to start-up companies for the development of new and emerging technologies in Texas.

Additional Reading

Office of the Governor’s Texas Wide Open for Business Site
Texas Wide Open for Business: Economic Overview
Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas Economic Data
Texas Workforce Commission
Texas State Comptroller
Texas Enterprise Fund
Emerging Technology Fund