We Have Latinos To Thank For Some Of America’s Biggest And Strongest Businesses

Latinos credit: Pamela Avila / mitú

Latinos may have given us Hot Cheetos and Zumba Fitness but there are so many more companies, products, and businesses that were created and influenced by Latinos as well.

In fact, a lot of successful American brands and products you love and use on a daily basis were in fact founded by Latinos. From beauty products, clothing brands, and Fortune 100 companies, the influence of Latino’s is endless.

According to a report from Fortune, 73 percent of senior executives in Fortune 500 companies are white. “The rest are 21 percent Asian, 3 percent Latino/a, 2 percent Black, 0.6 percent two or more races, 0.2 percent Native American and 0.1 percent Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander.”

While there’s still a long way to go in regards to the Latino community earning as much money as their white counterparts and holding positions of power within a company, we’ve rounded up 10 Latinos that have paved the way for future generations to thrive.

Check out these 9 companies and brands you didn’t know were influenced by Latinos.

1. Facebook

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CREDIT: Photographer: Nicky Loh for Bloomberg.com, December 6, 2017

Yes, you’re reading that right – Facebook was co-founded by a Latino.

Brazilian born entrepreneur and investor, Eduardo Luiz Saverin is one of the co-founders of Facebook and as of this year, he owns 53 million Facebook shares. According to Forbes, he has a net worth of $11.1 billion.

Currently, Saverin lives in Singapore after moving there to become a venture capitalist. He renounced his U.S. citizenship which might have been in part because he wanted to avoid paying taxes.

It’s also been reported that he had gotten into disputes with Mark Zuckerberg over shares of the Facebook company, according to Bloomberg.

All in all, however, we have the successful 36-year-old to thank for bringing us one of the most popular companies and social media networks.

2. Hot Cheetos

Hot Cheetos Inventor
CREDIT: Amazon / RPMontanez / Twitter

Of course, this is by far the best invention in the history of the humankind.

Without further ado, the mastermind behind the iconic red bag that has us lickin’ our fingers clean is Richard Montañez. You’ve probably heard this story before, but if you haven’t, here’s a little refresher: he worked as a janitor at a Frito-Lay plant for years before becoming the Executive Vice President of Multicultural Sales and Community Activation for PepsiCo.

Now, Montañez might finally be able to tell his story on the big screen. We can’t wait to sneak Hot Cheetos into that theatre.

3. Instagram

CREDIT: mikeyk / Instagram

Thirty two-year-old, Mike Krieger is a Brazilian entrepreneur and software engineer who co-founded Instagram along with 34-year-old Kevin Systrom.

Born in São Paulo, Brazil, Kriger moved to California in 2004 and attended Stanford University. That’s where he met Systrom as well. Six years later, the two co-founded one of the fastest-growing mobile apps.

According to Industry Leaders Magazine, within two years of Instagram’s launch, the social media platform was acquired by Facebook for $1 billion in 2012.

Now, Instagram is currently valued at $50 billion.

4. Zumba Fitness

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CREDIT: zumbabeto / Instagram

The Colombian dancer and choreographer Alberto “Beto” Pérez created the fitness program Zumba in the 1990s. If you’ve never taken a class, you’ve probably heard of someone who’s done Zumba.

The aerobic and dance exercise is accompanied by music from various genres such as hip-hop, soca, samba, salsa, tango, flamenco, merengue, and mambo.

Zumba is a high-energy, fun, and kick-ass workout that involves martial arts moves, squats, lunges and other aerobic techniques.

So if you ever want to get some cardio in or simply polish up your dance moves, make sure to book a class ASAP.

5. Shazam

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CREDIT: productivelives / shazam / Instagram

From 2010 to 2013, Mexican businessman Carlos Slim was ranked the richest person in the world by Forbes.

Slim is a Mexican business tycoon, engineer, investor and philanthropist. The 78-year-old has derived most of his fortune from his holdings and control in various Mexican companies through his conglomerate, Grupo Carso.

Mexico, however, isn’t where his influence begins or ends.

In July 2013, he invested $40 million in Shazam – the music recognition app – for an undisclosed share.

As of June of this year, Slim has been ranked the seventh-richest person in the world, according to Forbes.

6. Budweiser

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CREDIT: corona / Instagram

Ever heard of Anheuser-Busch InBev? It is one of the world’s largest beverage and brewing companies.

If you’ve ever popped open a cold Budweiser, Corona, or Stella Artois then Anheuser-Busch InBev is where these beverages come from.

Anheuser-Busch InBev is based in Belgium but also has locations in São Paulo, New York City, London, Mexico City, and more.

Aside from brewing beverages that are popular in Latino households, one of AB InBev’s investors is Brazilian. Marcel Hermann Telles is a board member of the company and increased their equity by one billion dollars, according to Forbes.

7. Heinz

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CREDIT: heinz / Instagram

Born in Brazil, Carlos “Beto” Sicupira is a businessman and a partner in 3G Capital.

Most of his wealth, however, comes from his shares in Anheuser-Busch InBev – the world’s largest brewer – where he owns about 3 percent of stakes.

As a partner of 3G Capital, he also owns and has major stakes in companies and brands like Burger King, H.J. Heinz Company and Lojas Americanas.

8. New York Times

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CREDIT: nyccallsyou / productivelives / Instagram

It’s no surprise that one of the richest men in the world, Carlos Slim, would make this list twice. It’s clear that his influence and mark in successful American brands and companies will continue to be.

The 78-year-old owns stakes in Mexican construction, mining, and real estate companies, and he also owns 17 percent of The New York Times. Mexico’s richest man acquired shares to The New York Times in 2015 and became the largest shareholder of the paper.

As of April of this year, Slim started to sell his New York Times stock and shares which lowered his stake in the company to about 15 percent. That’s still about 24 million in shares. Not too shabby.

9. Amazon

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CREDIT: jeffbezos / Instagram

Amazon’s chief Jeff Bezos’s net worth is $149.3 billion.

He was also the first person to top $100 billion as number one on the Forbes list of World’s Billionaires.

You might be wondering why he’s on this list since Bezos was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico and raised in Houston, Texas. He was raised by Cuban engineer Miguel Bezos who arrived in Miami in 1962.

Jeff Bezos’s mother remarried Miguel Bezos after divorcing his biological father. Together, they raised the richest person in the world.


READ: Latino Veterans Who Are Changing The Game In Business

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