Like most all women-owned businesses, Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) business owners have coped with enormous strain this past year. They’ve battled through the pandemic with Asian-owned businesses concentrated in essential industries—they make up 26% of hospitality businesses, 17% of retail and 11% of education services. On top of that, they’ve faced an increase in racism and xenophobia that has resulted in attacks on businesses as well as individuals.
In fact, according to our partners at WBENC, the current state of AAPI businesses is:
- Prior to the pandemic, AAPI purchasing power was estimated to be $1.3 trillion in 2020 and AAPI-owned business generated $744 billion in income in 2019. Source
- The number of AAPI-owned businesses decreased 20% from February to December 2020. Source
- Over 80% of AAPI business owners report COVID-19 has negatively impacted their business. Source
- In the five years prior to the pandemic, Asian American women-owned businesses grew by 37% to make up 9% of the total women-owned businesses in America in 2019. Source
- Although AAPI women entrepreneurs have grown significantly in the recent past, the negative impacts of the pandemic affect these women at a higher rate than male-owned and non-minority-owned counterparts. Source.
So how can we all support these AAPI women entrepreneurs not just this AAPI Heritage Month but throughout the year? Do business with them. For instance, here are seven businesses owned by AAPI women. Look around your community for others. Also, use your powerful #NAWBOVoice. If you see something, say something to local, state or even national legislators. Advocate for the support and equality of the AAPI community, and specifically AAPI women business owners.