STILL A MAN’S WORLD?

Houston Chronicle - - TEXAS INC - Com­piled from staff re­ports.

Busi­nesses owned by women have lower rev­enues in first year than male couner­parts.

Women-owned small busi­nesses op­er­at­ing in their first year have lower rev­enues, ex­pe­ri­ence slower growth and are less likely to re­ceive ex­ter­nal fi­nanc­ing than those owned by men, ac­cord­ing to a re­port is­sued Thurs­day.

De­spite those hur­dles, good cash man­age­ment strate­gies over time gen­er­ally al­low womenowned busi­nesses to achieve the same sur­vival rates as male-owned small busi­nesses, ac­cord­ing to a study by JPMor­gan Chase & Co.

Those strate­gies in­clude the abil­ity to hold emer­gency cash.

Av­er­age first-year rev­enues of women-owned small busi­nesses in Hous­ton are 40 per­cent lower than their male coun­ter­parts: $47,000 for women com­pared to $79,000 for men, the re­port’s au­thor’s found. Na­tion­ally, they found women-owned small busi­nesses have 34 per­cent lower first-year rev­enues than male-owned small busi­nesses, or $50,000 for women and $75,000 for men.

The re­port, from the JPMor­gan Chase In­sti­tute, a think tank funded by the bank­ing gi­ant that fre­quently fo­cuses on eco­nomic trends, used trans­ac­tional-level data on daily rev­enues, ex­penses and fi­nanc­ing flows of 138,000 small busi­nesses founded in 2013. The re­port ex­plored the out­comes of small busi­nesses bro­ken down by their owner’s gen­der, age and lo­ca­tion.

The re­port did not con­sider types of in­dus­tries when ex­am­in­ing the dis­par­ity in first-year rev­enues. Ac­cord­ing to the Small Busi­ness Ad­min­is­tra­tion, women are the pri­mary own­ers of busi­nesses in child care, health­care and ad­min­is­tra­tive ser­vices. Those sec­tors are of­ten lower pay­ing.

Fed boosts BBVA Com­pass rat­ing

The Fed­eral Re­serve Bank of At­lanta gave BBVA Com­pass an over­all “out­stand­ing” rat­ing when re­view­ing its com­pli­ance with the Com­mu­nity Rein­vest­ment Act, or CRA.

The CRA en­cour­ages banks to meet the credit needs of the com­mu­ni­ties, in­clud­ing low- and moder­ate-in­come neigh­bor­hoods, in which they op­er­ate. BBVA Com­pass re­ceived a “needs to im­prove” rat­ing in 2014.

BBVA Com­pass, the fourth-largest Hous­tonarea bank in terms of de­posits, re­sponded by be­gin­ning a five-year, $11 bil­lion com­mit­ment to lend­ing, in­vest­ment and ser­vices that sup­port the low- and moder­ate-in­come in­di­vid­u­als and neigh­bor­hoods it serves.

Since the late 2014 an­nounce­ment, BBVA Com­pass said it had ex­ceeded its $2 bil­lion goal for com­mu­nity devel­op­ment lend­ing, reach­ing $5 bil­lion of a $6.2 bil­lion goal for lend­ing to small busi­nesses. BBVA Com­pass said it made $22.5 mil­lion in char­i­ta­ble spon­sor­ships through the bank and grants from the BBVA Com­pass Foun­da­tion for com­mu­nity-based pro­grams and events over the 2015-17 CRA exam cy­cle.

The bank re­ceived an “ex­cel­lent per­for­mance” for the CRA re­view’s com­mu­nity devel­op­ment lend­ing and in­vest­ments cat­e­gories, and “high sat­is­fac­tory” for the ser­vice cat­e­gory, which trans­lates to the over­all “out­stand­ing” rat­ing, ac­cord­ing to the news re­lease.

Alabama com­peti­tor sues Buc-ee’s

Less than a month af­ter the first Buc-ee’s out­side of Texas opened in Alabama, the con­ve­nience store is fac­ing a law­suit claim­ing gas prices at the new lo­ca­tion are un­fairly low, ac­cord­ing to the pe­ti­tion filed in fed­eral court last week.

The Oa­sis Travel Cen­ter claims in the law­suit that the Alabama store’s gas prices are “preda­tory” and harm­ful toward its busi­ness. The travel cen­ter ap­pears to be lo­cated about four miles east of the new Buc-ee’s lo­ca­tion in Bald­win County, along In­ter­state 10 and Coun­try Road 64.

The law­suit claims the store vi­o­lated the Alabama Mo­tor Fuel Mar­ket­ing Act by sell­ing gas below the thresh­old im­posed by the law. The com­plaint says the store opened on Jan. 21 of­fer­ing gas at $1.79 per gal­lon for reg­u­lar un­leaded gaso­line. Since then, prices for reg­u­lar gas at the store have fluc­tu­ated be­tween $1.79 and $1.87, the law­suit says.

“This price is dra­mat­i­cally below cost as de­fined by the (Alabama Mo­tor Fuel Mar­ket­ing Act),” ac­cord­ing to the suit.

Ac­cord­ing to GasBuddy, the low­est gas prices in Bald­win County on Wed­nes­day was $1.81, while the av­er­age price was $1.97. The price at Buc-ee’s was listed at $1.89.

Oa­sis Travel Cen­ter, which says the Buc-ee’s gas prices have al­ready hurt busi­ness, is seek­ing an im­me­di­ate in­junc­tion to stop Buc-ee’s from sell­ing gas at those “preda­tory” prices, ac­cord­ing to the law­suit.

“Buc-ee’s has al­ways pro­vided our cus­tomers with the best ex­pe­ri­ence on the high­way, from the world’s clean­est bath­rooms, to great food,” com­pany Gen­eral Coun­sel Jeff Nadalo said in an email. “Part of this ex­pe­ri­ence in­cludes high qual­ity fu­els, priced fairly and com­pet­i­tively, and we will al­ways strive to be our cus­tomers’ choice in the mar­kets where we op­er­ate.”

Cour­tesy photo

Women in­ter­ested in oil & gas and petro­chem­i­cal ca­reers were en­cour­aged to at­tend the Women in In­dus­try 2019 Con­fer­ence that took place Jan. 30.

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