BATON ROUGE, La. -- For the second consecutive year, Louisiana will join a national movement in celebrating Small Business Saturday, a recognition of the strength, value and importance imparted by locally owned small businesses to their communities and the state.
In Louisiana, small businesses make up 97 percent of the state's employers. More than 80,000 of them employ staff members, and collectively small businesses account for 55 percent of all private-sector jobs in the state. Gov. Bobby Jindal signed a proclamation declaring Saturday, Nov. 26 as Small Business Saturday for 2011.
Gov. Jindal said, "Small businesses are the lifeblood of our economy and they embody the entrepreneurial spirit of America. Supporting small businesses is a top priority of our economic development efforts, and Small Business Saturday is a perfect opportunity for folks to support our local businesses and economy."
Sandwiched between the recent holiday shopping trends of "Black Friday" and "Cyber Monday," the Small Business Saturday observation also follows Thanksgiving and gives Louisiana residents an appropriate time and place to give special thanks and patronage for the state's small businesses.
"We continue to attract major business expansions and new business investments from beyond Louisiana that are adding increasing amounts of wealth and employment opportunities for the people of Louisiana," said Secretary Stephen Moret of Louisiana Economic Development. "These new business opportunities also are representing hundreds of millions of dollars in sales for out state's small businesses. At the same time, we want to encourage individual citizens to shop with our small businesses and help them compete in a way that keeps significant dollars at home in Louisiana and helps our state become the most competitive economy it can be."
According to the National Retail Federation, an estimated 212 million shoppers spent $45 billion on consumer purchases during Thanksgiving weekend in 2010. Small Business Saturday encourages shoppers to make a larger percentage of their purchases at locally owned, independent business, thus helping those enterprises thrive in a competitive economy.