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No Tuition Necessary: Capital One and Savvy Mommy Victoria Pericon Offer Advice to Help Mompreneurs Earn Their MomBA Outside the Classroom

October 23, 2007 at 8:02 AM EDT

Mompreneurs-to-Be Can Make Their Business Dreams a Reality

MCLEAN, Va.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Oct. 23, 2007--Earning an MBA may not be an option for all potential mompreneurs, so the Small Business division at Capital One Financial Corporation (NYSE:COF), and Victoria Pericon, founder of www.savvymommy.com - an award-winning online resource for mothers, have joined forces to provide mompreneurs-to-be with tips on entrepreneurship in hopes of establishing the next best thing: a MomBA.

A mompreneur is a woman who actively balances the role of mom and entrepreneur. Recent data on women-owned business start-ups, as well as statistics on the number of women returning to their jobs within a year of giving birth, suggest that this trend is not only real, but growing. A recent study from the Center for Women's Business Research showed that one-woman businesses, the group that most new moms fall into, grew at twice the rate of other businesses between 1997 and 2006 (42% vs. 24%).

As a mother of three and founder of her own Web site and online magazine, Pericon is a proven authority on building a business while balancing the obligations of family life. And as one of the nation's largest small business lenders, Capital One Small Business is in a position to offer mompreneurs insights on how to make financially prudent decisions to make their business successful.

"The demands of motherhood may not allow many to enroll in business school, but that shouldn't discourage moms from bringing their business dreams to life," said Victoria Pericon, Savvy Mommy. "In fact, motherhood oftentimes sparks great business ideas or encourages moms to pursue entrepreneurship as a means of acquiring a more flexible schedule. Therefore, we have pulled together what we think are the core principles necessary to start a small business and wrapped them into five manageable tips."

Capital One Small Business and Pericon created the following tips to help mothers earn their MomBAs:

    1. Innovation: Do your research. It's one thing to have a business
        idea, it's another to have one that will truly stand out.
        Explore Web sites that might be of interest to your audience
        and learn what's currently hot in the marketplace. Adjust your
        idea so that you can provide potential customers with
        something unique. Whether motherhood nurtured a new business
        idea or you've been sitting on an idea, now is the time to
        bring your business to life. This is the first step necessary
        to determine if your idea is both unique and viable.

    2. Finance 101: Assess your financial well-being. Do you have seed
        money to bring your idea to life or do you need financial
        assistance? Supplemental financing via an SBA loan, credit
        card or a line of credit may be options for you - but before
        exploring that route, check both your personal and business
        credit rating, since lenders typically underwrite based on
        both.

    3. Marketing: Are you marketing to the masses or focused on a
        niche audience? Knowing your target customer is key, so begin
        by developing a business plan and include a marketing
        component that will allow you to promote your product or
        service efficiently and effectively. Take the time to research
        your customer in order to find out the best way to reach them.
        Try partnering with other small businesses on cooperative
        marketing efforts so you can get more bang for your buck.

    4. Web 2.0: Not only is it important that you create an online
        presence for your business, but it's also important that you
        leverage the Internet to its fullest. In addition to using it
        to conduct competitive research you can use it to search for
        resources. In fact, social networking offers numerous
        opportunities for budding entrepreneurs as it provides the
        ability to connect with peer business owners for expertise
        and, potentially, resources.

    5. The Art of Multi-Tasking: The skill of multi-tasking has never
        been more important than it is for a mompreneur. Balancing
        work between play dates, doctors' appointments and school
        functions, are some of the harsh realities faced by
        mompreneurs. Are you up for the challenge?

"We are committed to providing a full range of resources and solutions uniquely tailored to help small business owners, such as mompreneurs, drive growth, maximize their potential, and make that smooth transition from mom to mompreneur," said Susan Tedesco, vice president of Small Business at Capital One. "We also highlight the importance of multi-tasking and encourage moms to take advantage of their natural inclination to juggle multiple tasks at once. While the MomBA is not a formal program, per se, these tips provide key guidance on the core business tenets necessary to get a small business off the ground."

Capital One offers financing solutions for all current and prospective small business owners. The Capital One Small Business web site (www.capitalone.com/smallbusiness) contains additional information and business tips related to a range of their product offerings, which include small business credit cards, small business loans, lines of credit and small business savings accounts.

About Capital One

Headquartered in McLean, Virginia, Capital One Financial Corporation (http://www.capitalone.com) is a financial holding company, with 732 locations in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Texas and Louisiana. Its principal subsidiaries, Capital One Bank, Capital One Auto Finance, Inc., and Capital One, N.A., offer a broad spectrum of financial products and services to consumers, small businesses and commercial clients. Capital One's subsidiaries collectively had $83.3 billion in deposits and $146.4 billion in managed loans outstanding as of September 30, 2007. Capital One, a Fortune 500 company, trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "COF" and is included in the S&P 100 index.

Capital One offers a range of products to meet small business needs, including small business credit cards, small business loans and lines of credit, and small business savings accounts. As the largest issuer of small business Visa credit cards, and the third largest lender of SBA loans, Capital One provides specialized support designed to make it easier for small business customers to manage their finances so that they can focus on what's important to them. Capital One small business products are available via direct mail, capitalone.com, phone (800.926.1000) and fax.

CONTACT: Capital One Financial Corporation
Steve Schooff
972-378-8105
stephen.schooff@capitalone.com

SOURCE: Capital One Financial Corporation