Client Showcase

For more than 20 years, HBIF has helped thousands of Hispanic entrepreneurs with services that increase the likelihood of success of their existing and prospective businesses. Over the
years, thousands of jobs have been created and retained by these Hispanic small business owners who benefited from HBIF’s services. Every entrepreneur has an interesting story of triumphs, challenges overcome and dreams fulfilled. Below are just a handful of success stories from HBIF’s recent clients.

Pet Paradise Animal Hospital
Pet Paradise Animal Hospital
Established in 2001, Pet Paradise Animal Hospital is a full-service veterinary clinic that recently moved to a new, state-of-the-art facility in Apopka, Florida. A second-generation veterinarian, Dr. Ana Ortiz developed a passion for the care and welfare of all animals at an early age, as both of her parents were licensed veterinarians in Puerto Rico. In 2011 Dr. Ortiz started working with HBIF to market the clinic more effectively. In addition to providing comprehensive care for pets, Pet Paradise Animal Hospital offers a full line of pet products, including dog food, cat food and pet accessories. For more information, visit

Black & Denim Apparel Company

Roberto Torres, Luis Montanez and Christopher Findeisen came together to start a business and found themselves creating a brand. In 2008 they established Black & Denim Apparel Company and their focus is U.S.- made men’s apparel. They currently sell their clothing through 50 boutiques and stores, and their most recent success was acquiring Disney’s Epcot theme park as a vendor. HBIF helped the partners with business and marketing plans, including helping them build relations with local media. To find out more about the company, visit

Acai Masters


Established in 2011, Acai Masters is a health-conscious business that provides their own acai-based product to gyms all across the Central and South Florida region. The product is completely prepared by them and is provided in a ready-to-consume state for their customers. With a long shelf-life (five years, as long as it is refrigerated), the acai product is 100% organic and “amazingly healthy and tasty.” The acai berry is known to provide a variety of health benefits including increased energy, improved circulation, a healthier heart, a stronger immune system, detoxification, among several others. Leon Barrocas, the owner of the business, is exploring opportunities with HBIF that will contribute to Acai Masters’ success.

Oralba’s Shoes
Oralba Valera-Smith approached HBIF in 2009 for startup assistance. An artisan at heart, she left a job in the banking industry and decided to pursue her dream of making and selling her designer shoes. In the past three years, Oralba received four HBIF grants that allowed her to establish Oralba’s Shoes and begin producing and marketing her one-of-a-kind product. The handmade shoes became very popular and often sell out at weekend fine art festivals and local farmers markets.The native Venezuelan’s dream has led her to permanently showcase and sell her designer shoes at The Hub on Canal Street in New Smyrna Beach. The Hub is a gallery for regional artists to work and sell their art. Visit Oralba’s Shoes Web site at

EMA Partners Miami
EMA Partners

Luis Pedemonte, a visionary in the executive search industry, founded his firm in Miami in 2008. He expanded the company in various industries such as technology, advertising and media, wealth management, government solutions and healthcare and placed successful hires in global companies. Realizing the company’s growth potential, Luis wished to attract investors and grow his business even more, and HBIF was able to assist him with a business plan for this. Today, EMA Partners Miami is the LATAM office for the firm and is part of EMA Partners International, one of the largest executive search firms in the world. With more than 40 offices on six continents, they are dedicated to satisfying the senior executive search and talent management needs of clients. To learn more about EMA Partners Miami, visit

2013 Tampa HBIF Success Stories Luncheon Honoree Videos

2013 Orlando HBIF Success Stories Luncheon Honoree Videos