June 7, 2004-- Six years from now, Hispanic-owned businesses will earn an estimated $465 billion and number 3.2 million, according to a new report from HispanTelligence, a research group.

The numbers represent a tremendous jump from the group's projections of $273 billion in revenue and 2 million businesses for 2004.

"The strong growth indicates the increasingly vital role of Hispanic-owned firms in U.S. economic development," said Dr. Juan Solana, chief economist for HispanTelligence.

The swelling in the number of Hispanic businesses coincides with a surge in population. There were more than 35 million Hispanics living in the U.S. in 2000, a nearly 58 percent increase from 1990, according to the Census Bureau.

The Census Bureau found that there were 1.2 Hispanic-owned businesses, which employed 1.3 million people and generated $186.3 billion in revenues in 1997, the most recent official numbers available. This marked a 30 percent increase in the number of firms compared to 1992.

The service and financial sectors should show the largest growth, said HispanTelligence. It also noted that 90 percent of all Hispanic-owned businesses are concentrated in 20 states, with California and Florida businesses accounting for 56 percent of all revenues.