As small businesses recover from the pandemic, entrepreneurs of color continue to be disproportionately affected. Fortunately, many corporations like Wells Fargo have started funds to address these issues. In fact, a new scholarship was launched this week with this goal in mind. Read about this and other current small business grant opportunities below.
Houston and Wells Fargo open for business grant
The City of Houston and Wells Fargo are launching a new $20 million Open for Business grant. The portal opens for applicants on August 9 to support underserved businesses in the city. Wells Fargo’s contribution is part of its national Open for Business fund, created in the early days of the pandemic. To qualify, businesses and nonprofits must be led by people of color and located in the Houston area with 50 or fewer employees. Eligible businesses and nonprofits can apply for grants between $10,000 and $65,000. The application portal closes on August 23.
Marion grant for innovation and business support
Marion, Iowa is introducing a grant for innovation and business support to help businesses hurt by the COVID-19 pandemic. Funded through Marion’s American Rescue Plan Act funding allocation, about $450,000 is available to businesses in the city with ten or fewer employees. Individual grants can range from $5,500 to $15,500 in matching funds. Recipients must also participate in five hours of business counseling. Applications will be available until funds have been allocated.
Fayetteville Small Business Grant Program
Fayetteville, North Carolina, recently launched a grant program for struggling small businesses. The small business grant program began on July 5, with $3 million available. But the City Council has said that so far not many companies have applied. To qualify, local businesses must have fewer than 200 employees. And up to $50,000 is available for each business, depending on how many reimbursable expenses each business has.
Gulfport Downtown Frontage Grants
Downtown Gulfport, Alabama offers facade grants to businesses in specific districts. The city and its partners have just awarded $25,000 in this first round to businesses in the Innovation and Quarters districts. To qualify, businesses must be members of Gulfport Main Street in approved districts. The first round of funding has already been granted. But you can learn more and apply online for future funding rounds.
Oak City Labs
Raleigh, North Carolina and the Carolina Small Business Development Fund host a grant program called Oak City Biz Labs. The first-come, first-served program also connects small businesses with technical assistance programs. The city is hosting an upcoming information session for interested entrepreneurs that will explain eligibility requirements and the application process.
New York Small Business Resource Network Grant
New York City is making a $1.5 million investment in the New York Small Business Resource Network. This grant allows the organization to continue operations through 2023. This investment does not go directly to the city’s small businesses like other small business grant opportunities. But the SBRN offers support with small business grant and loan applications. Thus, businesses in the city can visit a local center to find opportunities or get support during the application process. Other services include marketing assistance, accounting and legal services, and help finding the right digital tools.
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