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Study: SD entrepreneurs see increase in profit, revenue and employees

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San Diego entrepreneurs saw some positive growth in net profit, revenue and number of employees over the past six months, according to the Entrepreneurs' Organization's Global Entrepreneur Indicator Study.

The Entrepreneurs' Organization brings together risk-taking entrepreneurs to help each other navigate a successful business, said Michel Kripalani, communications chair for the San Diego chapter of EO.

The organization's Global Entrepreneur Indicator Study shows that 64 percent of San Diego respondents saw an increase in net profit during the past six months, while 12 percent saw a decrease. The remainder saw no change. Globally, 59 percent of respondents saw an increase in net profits and 19 percent saw a decrease in the past six months. In San Diego, 92 percent of respondents predicted an increase of net profit in the next six months.

However, only 32 percent of San Diego respondents predicted an improvement in the country's economic environment in the next six months, compared to 44 percent of respondents who predicted it would deteriorate.

Business revenue increased for 68 percent of respondents, and decreased for 16 percent. And 96 percent of respondents predicted business revenue to increase in the coming six months.

The number of full-time employees increased for 60 percent of San Diego respondents, and decreased for 12 percent in the past six months. Sixty-eight percent of respondents predict an increase in full-time employees in the coming six months, while only 4 percent predicted a decrease.

Access to capital increased for 44 percent of respondents, and decreased for 8 percent in the past six months. Forty percent of respondents predicted access to capital to increase in the coming six months, and 4 percent predicted it to decrease.

Debt load among San Diego respondents increased for 20 percent, and decreased for 16 percent; and 20 percent of respondents predict debt load to increase in the coming six months, while 4 percent predict it to decrease.

The EO San Diego chapter was founded in 1992 and has 78 members, according Kripalani. The organization has more than 8,000 members worldwide. When Kripalani joined the organization less than three years ago, there were about 45 members.

"The growth has been very significant," Kripalani said. "One of the things that happens in a recession is that folks decide to take the bull by the horns and get things going. We've seen a lot of business start-ups in the last couple years, which are now reaching the point of making more than $1 million in gross revenues and are eligible for EO."

EO San Diego's members are the founders or cofounders of businesses grossing at least $1 million per year.

"At the core, entrepreneurs are a unique breed because they are risk takers that often times don't have good support networks of people to talk to," Kripalani said. "Put yourself in the shoes of a small business entrepreneur. You're having a hard time making payroll -- who do you talk to? If you talk to your spouse, that can cause stress. If you talk to someone within the organization, you create problems. If you talk to your peers, who are also entrepreneurs, you'll most likely find someone who had been in that situation."

The organization strives to have at least one learning event per month featuring a writer or speaker who can help educate the members. Members also break into smaller groups called forums, about seven to 12 members, who meet monthly in a confidential setting and talk about what's working and what's not working in their business lives, personal lives and family lives.

"Through the process of experience sharing, they find ways to make better choices and better decisions -- often business related and often personal related," Kripalani said.

The January learning event is on Tuesday, Jan. 29, with speaker Cameron Herold, the chief operating officer at 1-800-GOT-JUNK?

On March 7, speakers Richard and Linda Eyre will present, "Raising Responsible Kids in an Affluent EO Environment." On April 9, Brian Tracy, chairman and CEO of Brian Tracy International, will discuss achieving personal and business goals. From May 3 through May 5, the EO Grand Learning Event in Las Vegas will bring together the Las Vegas, San Diego and Orange county chapters with speakers Tony Hsieh, Kevin Harrington and Scott Stratten.

EO San Diego also has an Accelerator Group for members who gross between $250,000 and $1 million per year. The EO members mentor the accelerator members to help grow their businesses, Kripalani said.

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