What Do AAPI Small Business Owners Need to Succeed?

We reviewed data from more than 17,000 AAPI owners to find some answers.

May 24, 2021 · 2 min read
Alvin Shen is the co-founder of Best Coast Burritos in Emeryville, CA.

This May, we’re celebrating Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month by telling stories of the next generation taking over the family business, immigrants achieving the American Dream through entrepreneurship, and amazing products from AAPI-owned small brands. But we also wanted to ask our more than 17,000 AAPI small business owners a few questions to learn more about who you are and what you need.

Based on anonymous profile data and thousands of survey responses, here’s what you told us:

  • The majority of AAPI owners on Hello Alice are women (54%) and over 40 (62%).
  • The top three industries for AAPI entrepreneurs on Hello Alice are Food and Beverage (22%), Healthcare and Wellness (13%), and Beauty and Self-Care (12%).
  • 48% of AAPI owners told us that customer referral was their top acquisition channel.
  • 55% of AAPI-owned small businesses record annual revenue greater than $100,000

You can view the complete findings of our analysis in the 2021 Hello Alice Asian American and Pacific Islander Impact Report. Created in partnership with the Global Entrepreneurship Network, SEARAC, Welcome to Chinatown, and ACE NextGen, the document will be used to educate business leaders and help AAPI owners get the resources they need to come back from the challenges of the last year stronger than ever.

Front and center in the report is the troubling rise of anti-Asian hate incidents, with small businesses cited as the primary location of discrimination. AAPI owners also told us that operating their business was one of their greatest business challenges, eclipsed only by raising capital. In spite of these challenges, AAPI owners continue to show up for their employees and communities through a commitment to making a positive impact with their small businesses with fair wages, jobs for underserved communities, and donations to nonprofits. 

To discuss the report and keep the conversation going, we invite you to a Virtual AAPI Town Hall on Tuesday, May 25, at 1:30 p.m. ET. The free event is an open forum for AAPI owners and allies to share resources and experiences. Registration is now open.

AAPI owners should also bookmark our newly launched Funding Center, which collects grant opportunities from our partners and around the web, and Hello Alice’s COVID-19 Business Resource Center. We’re actively listening to your ideas and feedback in our Business for All community, too.

Download the full Hello Alice Impact Report