Martin Desmarais

Recent Stories

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Regulating the sharing economy

Congress probes consumer, business protections in growing sector

The sharing economy went before Congress last week for a stark examination of how it creates jobs, benefits consumers, but also raises a slew of policy concerns and questions. At stake is the question of how much regulation businesses in the sharing economy need.

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Programs that help women business owners expand their opportunities

Women-owned businesses are on the rise — most accounts find they make up about 30 percent of all privately held firms in the U.S. — but there is concern that many of these business top out early.

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Focus on sustainable food

Festival highlights progress in Boston’s local food economy

Owners of many of Boston’s up-and-coming new food businesses turned up to showcase their fare on Sept. 20 for the sixth annual Boston Local Food Festival on the Rose F. Kennedy Greenway. Neighborhood food startups relished the attention from an estimated 50,000 visitors who roamed and grazed through the food festival’s array of stalls and tents.

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SBA expands reach

New program trains community orgs to support local entrepreneurs

The federal government is trying to do a better job helping small businesses in underserved communities grow, and is reaching out to community organizations as partners in doing so.

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Moira Studio’s Clemencia Herrera combines marketing and design skills

Clemencia Herrera, founder and creative director of Moira Studio, a creative marketing firm based in Cambridge, has put her multicultural background and experience to work to gain a foothold for her startup business.

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The Holyoke Innovation District finds creative solutions to revitalizing the city

While Boston’s Seaport Innovation District has garnered praise and attention, the efforts in Holyoke to revitalize vacant mill and factory sections of the city with new businesses and spur economic growth has been steadily and successfully moving forward for more than half a decade.

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Saint John 316 - Putting faith in fashion

Entrepreneurs draw inspiration from scripture for clothing line

The founders of Saint John 316, married couple Keith and Renee B. Ware, want to send a faith-based message with their apparel and lifestyle fashion brand — the Christian-based theme reflects their personal beliefs — but they also are savvy enough to know that their market focus may be the key to getting their fledgling venture off the ground.

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The importance of the web

Digital presence is key for minority businesses

Maintaining a digital presence is crucial to all business in today’s Internet-driven and increasingly mobile-dominated market. For small businesses, digital know-how can mark the difference between closing shop quickly and growing into a thriving company. And for minority businesses, argues Dartmouth professor Alva Taylor, digital excellence even more essential.

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U.S. doing more contracting with small businesses

For small businesses, chasing government contracts can be the difference between not just surviving, but thriving. Thanks to the recent boom in federal government work awarded to small businesses, government contracts are abundant. But in Massachusetts the chase is not just a metaphor, as more and more Bay State companies venture beyond the state and region to seal the deal. Working out-of-state adds logistical challenges and risk to many small businesses, but some local companies are proving that the extra effort is worth it because they are able to more than double and triple their revenues.

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Blending arts and science

Boston nonprofit gives kids hands-on tech experience

Boston startup Gique (the name signifies a cross between “geek” and “chic”) is bringing its unique blend of technology, engineering, math and art to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Dorchester on Aug. 6, giving local kids exposure to the passion project that MIT grad Danielle Olson hopes will help pave the future for a generation of tech-savvy and creative minds from Boston’s neighborhoods.

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