IBHS Introduces OFB-EZ Spanish Edition to Help Hispanic-Owned Businesses Prepare for Disasters

RICHBURG, S.C., Oct. 4, 2018 – Many businesses are unprepared to respond to a weather disaster like Hurricane Florence or other disruptions such as a structure fire or long-term power outage. Developing a business continuity plan should be a high priority for all small businesses across South Carolina so they can survive and quickly recover from costly interruptions.

The Richburg-based Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IHBS) provides key guidance for small businesses to prepare for any type of disruption with its widely acclaimed OFB-EZ (Open for Business-EZ) business continuity toolkit. The demand for this free, eight-module risk management program has expanded to the surging Hispanic marketplace, prompting IBHS to create a Spanish edition of the OFB-EZ toolkit.

“Hispanic-owned businesses are a great force driving small business growth in the U.S,” said Gail Moraton, business resiliency manager, IBHS. According to the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, 4.4 million Latino-owned businesses contribute more than $700 billion annually to the U.S. economy and have generated nearly 32 percent top-line growth over the past five years, more than double the growth rate of all other business sectors.

“As IBHS observed the trend of an expanding Hispanic small business market, we also identified the need to assist business owners whose primary language is Spanish to help them better prepare for disasters and other types of business interruptions. Our new Spanish version of OFB-EZ is a valuable resource for Latino business owners throughout South Carolina communities,” Moraton added.

In conjunction with the rollout of the OFB-EZ Spanish edition, IBHS has also introduced new guidance for tracking essential business equipment during a disaster. Know Your Equipment provides a path for small business owners to highlight equipment essential to staying open before, during and after a disaster. This OFB-EZ module is available in English and Spanish.

IBHS wishes to thank several contributors for spearheading the translation of the OFB-EZ toolkit into Spanish, under the auspices of Tulsa (Okla.) Community College's Translating Skills Program, in collaboration with the Tulsa-based Disaster Resilience Network's (DRN) Business and Cross-Cultural Councils:

 Johan Sebastian Martinez-Vargas, translator, Tulsa Community College Spanish Translating Skills Program
 Odilia Peña, instructor, Tulsa Community College Translating Skills Program
 Tina Peña, instructor, Tulsa Community College Translating Skills Program
 Tim Lovell, executive director, Disaster Resilience Network (formerly known as Tulsa Partners Inc.)
 David Hall, chair, DRN - Disaster Resilience Business Council
 Alex Gomez, co-chair, DRN - Disaster Resilience Cross-Cultural Council
 Michael Grogan, co-chair, DRN - Disaster Resilience Cross-Cultural Council

The Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety is a nonprofit organization supported by the insurance industry. IBHS' mission is to conduct objective, scientific research to identify and promote effective actions that strengthen homes, businesses and communities against natural disasters and other causes of loss. Learn more about IBHS at www.disastersafety.org.

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