Juan Miguel Lopez was a successful entrepreneur from a family of entrepreneurs in Mexico. He owned a bar, a nightclub and two restaurants in Leon, Guanajuato State. He was also an opera tenor, director of art conservation programs, and a TV show host supporting the preservation of Mexican traditions.
Then 9/11 happened. After the terrorist attacks on the United States, the U.S. tightened trade restrictions on many countries, directly affecting Lopez’s clients in Leon, which indirectly led to his own businesses closing. Six months later, he traveled to Dallas, TX to find work, with only $200 in his pocket, knowing no one or speaking any English. When he was able, he brought his wife and daughter to Dallas, where they still live today.
Lopez began building a new future, mowing lawns while living in a storage room. He waited tables and sang to his customers for extra tips. Not long after arriving, he was asked to perform as a singer at the Dallas Museum of Art.
After living in Dallas for a while, Lopez realized many people coming to America do not know how to start and build a business, so in 2009 he started Mito Financial, a credit and business consulting company. In 2012, he started Mito Investments, a small business loan company. In the same year, he was nominated as one of 11 immigrant businesses who demonstrate exemplary leadership He holds seminars to teach Spanish-speaking people how to build their credit and qualify for home and business loans.
“This country offers opportunities for those who ask for it—regardless of their language of origin,” said Lopez in Coco Salazar’s Informate DFW article. “Forget the 40/40 (40 hours for 40 years) and put forth extra effort. Hang out with entrepreneurs. You’ll become an entrepreneur.”