Proliferation of Asian-owned firms opens job prospects for Las Vegans

A pleasant assault of the senses greeted guests last October at the first Asian Food Festival. Wafting through the air was the fragrant flavors of various Oriental cuisines, while the beat of cymbals and gongs, typical of Asian music, permeated the scene.

In the event, the Orient blended with the Occident in this first of its kind fair that welcomed some 30,000 patrons.

If community and business leaders were to be asked, such a sight will be common in 2012 as Asian-owned firms continue to expand in Las Vegas, further changing the business landscape.

The Las Vegas Asian Chamber of Commerce predicts the only direction for growth of local Asian-owned businesses is upwards. This is because of the fast population growth in the Asian community which creates a massive demand for products.

At a rapid 116.5 percent growth — as U.S. Census Bureau records showed — the group’s population increase in Nevada from 2000-2010 is exceptional.

"The recent census results determined that the population of Asian Americans in Las Vegas has increased thereby increasing the demand for services and goods for this community," said Dr. Terry Wong, president of the Las Vegas Asian Chamber of Commerce.

"The prospect of Asian business growth in Las Vegas is great," Wong said. "My expectations are that growth of Asian-owned businesses will increase steadily during the upcoming year."

And as Asians change the Las Vegas business landscape, so will they change the job market as more new firms offer career opportunities for locals.

Food is the fad

If the Asian Food Festival was any indication, food-related businesses will become the fast fad in Las Vegas.

"I believe (the food business) already is the trend," said Noel Casimiro, project chair of the Las Vegas Asian Food Festival.

"I remember when Asian restaurants would primarily only have Asian customers eating at the establishments and now it has gone to the mainstream community. Everyone loves Asian food!" he added.

This observation guided him in organizing the successful Asian Food Festival, which now will be staged every year.

"We will have another one (in 2012). (In the next one) I want to add more Asian themed décor, art and performances," he added.

"The purpose of the Asian Food Festival is to create a cultural food festival, such as the San Gennaro, that will showcase a variety of Asian foods," Casimiro said.

While cultural promotion was one of its major goals, it was the marketing of Asian-owned businesses that was a welcome result of the festival.

"I think that the recent Asian Food Festival was successful in promoting Asian businesses and advertising the business to mainstream Las Vegas," the chamber’s Wong said.

Wong noted that local Asian-owned businesses, a group that is growing massively, needs to take advantage of festivals such as these for their much-needed advertising.

"I feel that it is essential that small businesses position themselves before the pendulum swings back towards better economic times," he said.

Casimiro also said that food-related businesses will continue to open and to expand in Las Vegas in 2012. And the food festival is expected to help promote these businesses, he added.

The influx of Asian food businesses, meanwhile, will result in a host of job opportunities for Las Vegas locals, he noted.

Most Asian restaurants, as with other Asian businesses, have a family-oriented style of hiring. It is common among Asians to involve members of the family in their businesses, noted chamber chairman Robert Young. When these firms do hire nonfamily members, these are treated as family.

"Asian culture is very much that when you start a business, there are things that are different compared to mainstream businesses," Young said in an earlier interview.

"One is that we are very much family-oriented. We are using family members working together as a team. That is a core value of Asian enterprises," he said.

The other more important value that sets Asian firms apart is the way these companies treat their employees, Young noted.

"They treat them not as a liability, but an asset. If the economy is down, they will not fire those employees. They will find a way to increase income instead. That is the big difference," he said.

But the promise of a job and longtime employment by Asian employers is only given to those who show commitment to their jobs and its challenges, Young said.

"Most of the time, Asian employers hire for long term. They want employees to start from the ground, (and) then work up, then step up," he said.

"When we hire someone, we look at their resume. If, for example, they are in one position for five to 10 years, we would be very interested," he added.

Las Vegas is Chinese’s choice

Among Asians business owners, those from China are the ones who view Las Vegas as one of the best places to invest. Aside from the food industry, which Chinese business owners currently focus on, ventures have now expanded to hotel operations as well.

"I would say hotel and land purchasing, and professional services (related to hotel operations) will have further growth," said Julia Zhang, Beijing representative of the Nevada Commission on Economic Development.

"I can see a very strong trend for Chinese (investors) coming to the U.S. for cooperation and investment, she added.

Zhang explained that in her native China, a large number of corporations and wealthy individuals are financially strong to go out of the country for business.

And Las Vegas is their top choice for business given the lowered value of real estate. The city was gripped by continuously high jobless rate, while home foreclosures in the city remain highest in the country. The state was also the epicenter of the housing crisis that resulted in the nation’s economic downturn.

The chamber’s Young noted that any good businessman would know that the best time to invest is during a down economy "because everything is cheaper."

"This is the best period for them to invest here. Everything is cheaper than before. In other words, they should buy low and sell high," Young said.

"There is a down cycle and up or peak cycle. If you do it right, you come in the down cycle, increase the value, then you get out, make money. Right now, we’ve seen the market bottom out," he added.

The Las Vegas Asian Chamber of Commerce represents the professional and business interests of Asians in Las Vegas. Among its many activities is the creation of networking opportunities for its members within and outside Las Vegas, as well as with business executives in other Asian countries.

The chamber worked with the Nevada Commission on Economic Development’s Beijing office in enticing Chinese investors to Las Vegas. The anticipated influx of Chinese investors to Las Vegas in 2012 is a result of extensive marketing strategies that resulted in this collaboration. These strategies include massive media promotions in China, as well as accompanying Chinese investors who attend trade shows in Las Vegas.

"We, the Beijing office of the Nevada Commission on Economic Development, are trying our best to attract Chinese investors to Las Vegas," Zhang said.

The NCED is a state agency established in 1983 to promote and encourage vital economic interests of Nevada. It stimulates business expansion, attracts new businesses to promote a robust, diversified and prosperous economy.

Its Beijing office was established in July 2011 to bring more investors to Nevada. Las Vegas is the city that Chinese investors are eyeing "because of huge business opportunities here," Zhang said.

"Some investors have been to Las Vegas and a few projects are already under way. So we will see further growth of Asian businesses, especially Chinese businesses in Las Vegas," Zhang added.

While she indicated that the majority of new Chinese investors are finalizing deals in hotel and hotel operations in Las Vegas, she declined to mention specific companies.

She stressed, however, that the entry of these companies would bring a great number of job opportunities to local Las Vegas residents. "Once they arrive here, they will have to hire local people to help with business development," Zhang said, indicating possible top-to-bottom hiring of these large companies.

Like those of all other businesses, owners of large Asian firms recognize education and experience when making hiring decisions, especially for top positions. But aside from this, Asian businesses will put a premium on bilingual applicants.

"When Chinese investors come, they would mostly hire bilingual Chinese workers," Zhang said.

Small business success

As large businesses invade the business community in Las Vegas, small businesses also are expected to grow.

Recognizing the impact of small businesses on creating jobs, the federal government is throwing all its support toward the success of these firms.

At a Las Vegas town hall meeting in October, White House officials pushed for more small businesses to open to help buoy the sagging economy.

"In order to get this economy started again, more small businesses are needed," Small Business Administration Regional Director Elizabeth Echols said in the meeting. She urged current and future business owners to tap local SBA offices for support.

Created in 1953, the SBA is an independent agency of the federal government, which gives assistance to small businesses. It provides protection of these firms’ interests as well.

In Clark County, the National Small Business Development Council provides useful information that helps businesses in their operations. The national agency has established two offices in the county since it recognizes Southern Nevada as among the nation’s more popular destinations for startup businesses because of its rapidly growing population.

Its Henderson office serves existing and prospective business owners in the Henderson, Green Valley and Boulder City area, while the Las Vegas office — a partnership program between the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and the SBA — is located at the university’s Campus Services Building.

Echols explained how small businesses have the lion’s share in a city’s economic production and hiring and, thus, are a major influence to economic recovery.

"AAPI-owned (Asian American and Pacific Islander-owned) small businesses, in particular, are a big force because they contributed $300 billion in sales and 2 million jobs (in 2010)," she noted, citing national figures.

While Asian businesses comprise a modest 10 percent of all businesses in Las Vegas, it is the group that showed the most resilience. This was evidenced by the entry of major Asian brands during and immediately after the financial crisis in the late 2000s.

ad-high_impact_4
News
NSPCA Gets Kittens From LA
Man killed during road-rage incident
Las Vegas police are looking for two men involved in the shooting death of a man outside a 7-Eleven story at Bonanza Road and Maryland Parkway on Nov. 12, 2018. (Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department)
VA Southern Nevada Healthcare System hosts Veterans Day Car Show and BBQ
The 4th Annual Veterans Day Car Show and BBQ is held in celebration of Veterans Day at the VA Southern Nevada Healthcare System Medical Center in North Las Vegas, Saturday, Nov. 10, 2018. (Caroline Brehman/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Wildfires in Southern California
Wildfires hit Ventura County, Calif., on Nov. 9, 2018. (Richard Brian/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Dedication of Nevada's Battle Born memorial
The state of Nevada on Friday dedicated its Battle Born memorial honoring 895 state residents who have died in America’s wars.
Las Vegas police and Sunrise Children's Hospital hope to prevent infant deaths
The Metropolitan Police Department and Sunrise Children's Hospital held a press conference to get the message out on preventable infant deaths attributed to "co-sleeping" and other unsafe sleeping habits. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
No serious injuries after car hits tree in south Las Vegas
One person reported minor injuries but wasn’t hospitalized after a Wednesday morning crash in the south valley.
Nellis Air Force Base keeps airmen fed
Nellis Air Force Bass airmen have delicious and healthy food items, and a variety of dining facilities to choose from. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Suspicious package found at central Las Vegas post office
Las Vegas police determined that a suspicious package found Monday morning at a central valley post office was not a threat.
Suspicious package found at central Las Vegas post office
Police evacuated the area around the Garside Station post office early Monday morning near Oakey and Decatur boulevards.
With husband's passing, family in limbo for workers' comp claim
Meredith Tracy's husand, Russell Tracy, died more than a year ago on his first day working for a new company when he fell 22 feet into a manhole that was not properly safeguarded. His employer was fined $82,000 in penalties for unsafe practices, but the company has denied her workers' compensation claim, leaving her with no compensation since the death. Rachel Aston Las Vegas Review-Journal @rookie__rae
With husband's passing, family in limbo for workers' comp claim
Meredith Tracy's husand, Russell Tracy, died more than a year ago on his first day working for a new company when he fell 22 feet into a manhole that was not properly safeguarded. His employer was fined $82,000 in penalties for unsafe practices, but the company has denied her workers' compensation claim, leaving her with no compensation since the death. Rachel Aston Las Vegas Review-Journal @rookie__rae
Las Vegas family shares flu warning
Carlo and Brenda Occhipinti lost their son, Carlo Jr., or “Junior,” to the flu last year.
Author Randall Cannon shares an anecdote about Stadust Raceway
Author Randall Cannon shares an anecdote about Dan Blocker, who played Hoss Cartwright on the TV show "Bonanza," and the actor's passion for auto racing at Stardust International Raceway in Las Vegas during the 1960s. (Ron Kantowski/Las Vegas Review-Journal.)
Project Neon 85 percent complete
On Wednesday morning Oct. 31, Interstate 15 northbound lane restrictions were removed opening up Exit 41 to Charleston Blvd. On Thursday Nov. 1, Interstate 15 southbound lane restrictions were removed. The new southbound off-ramp to Sahara Ave. and Highland Dr. also opened Thursday, November 1. With Project Neon 85% finished the flow of traffic on Interstate 15 has substantially diminished. (Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Girl killed after jumping from bridge onto 215 Beltway in Henderson
Eastbound lanes of the 215 Beltway are shut down by the Nevada Highway Patrol after a female juvenile jumped from the 215 overpass at Stephanie and was struck by a FedEx tractor trailer. Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal @Vegas88s
Kristallnacht story
An interview with 94-year-old Holocaust survivor Alexander Kuechel who survived seven concentration camps and didn’t leave Germany until after World War II was over. (Mia Sims/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
1 dead in central Las Vegas crash
An early Wednesday morning crash left at least one person dead and another injured. The crash was reported just around 3 a.m. at the intersection of Flamingo Road and Swenson Street. At least two vehicles were involved in the crash, one of which caught fire. Debris was scattered across the intersection as police combed the area as they investigated the scene. Flamingo is blocked in both directions between Swenson and Cambridge Street. Northbound Swenson is blocked at the intersection.
Richard Knoeppel named the 2018 Nevada Teacher of the Year
Richard Knoeppel, an architecture design instructor at the Advanced technologies Academy, named the 2018 Nevada Teacher of the Year on Monday, Oct. 29, 2018. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Mojave Poppy Bees
(Zach Portman/University of Minnesota Department of Entomology) Male Mojave poppy bees exhibit territorial fighting behavior. The Center for Biological Diversity wants the bee, found only in Clark County, to be added to the endangered species list.
Clark County Schools announce random searches
Clark County School District middle and high school students will be subject to random searches for weapons under a new initiative to combat the wave of guns found on campus. (Amelia Pak-Harvey/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Ron Jeremy and Heidi Fleiss React to Dennis Hof's Death
Ron Jeremy and Heidi Fleiss speak about their friend and prominent brothel owner Dennis Hof's death at Dennis Hof's Love Ranch. (Benjamin Hager/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Nevada brothel owner Dennis Hof has died
Nevada brothel owner and Republican candidate for Nevada State Assembly District 36, Dennis Hof has died. He was 72. Nye County Sherriff's office confirmed. Hof owned Love Ranch brothel, located in Crystal, Nevada.
Las Vegas police investigate suspicious package at shopping center
Las Vegas police evacuated a southeast valley shopping center at Flamingo and Sandhill roads early Tuesday morning while they investigated reports of a suspicious package. (Max Michor/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
The Las Vegas Metro hosts the K-9 Trials
The Las Vegas Metro K-9 Trials returns to the Orleans Arena to benefit the Friends For Las Vegas Police K-9 group.
Kingman residents love their little town
Residents of Kingman, Ariz. talk about how they ended up living in the Route 66 town, and what they love about their quiet community. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Service at Southern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery
Twelve unclaimed veterans are honored at Southern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Boulder City in Oct. 9, 2018. (Briana Erickson/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas house prices reach highest level in 11 years
Las Vegas house prices are rising But so is the amount of available homes on the market Still, properties priced below $300,000 are selling fast And September was the first time since June 2007 that the median house price reached the $300,000 mark Las Vegas home prices have been rising at one of the fastest rates in the country over the past year Recent data show the market is now less affordable than the national average
National Night Out
About 100 Summerlin residents gathered at Park Centre Dr. in Summerlin on Tuesday for National Night Out. Lt. Joshua Bitsko with Las Vegas Metro, played with 3-year-old David who was dressed as a police officer. Face painting, fire truck tours and more kept kids busy as parents roamed behind them. (Mia Sims/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Rural homeless issue comes to a head in Pahrump
On Sept. 12, Pahrump sheriff deputies told residents of a homeless encampment on private property that they had 15 minutes to vacate and grab their belongings. That decision might face some legal consequences. (Rachel Aston/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
ad-infeed_1
ads_infeed_2
Local Spotlight
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like