The Coalition to Back Black Businesses (CBBB) recently announced that they have awarded close to 500 Black-owned businesses grants of $5,000 each.
Nearly 500 Black-Owned Small Businesses Awarded $5,000 Grants
The CBBB was co-founded in 2020 by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and American Express along with four leading national Black business organizations. They created the multi-year grant and mentorship initiative with the aim of providing eligible recipients with enhancement grants reaching a total of $25,000.
Opportunities for Entrepreneurs of Color
Addressing the needs of businesses impacted by the pandemic and supporting their long-term growth was the main reason behind the formation of the CBBB. Since its inception, the organization has awarded grants to more than 1,000 Black-owned small businesses.
One recipient of a grant, Mandi Masden who owns Apostrophe Puzzles, explained that while all businesses need money, Black and brown businesses had been receiving a much smaller percentage of new business funding. The Coalition to Back Black Businesses addresses this issue, providing new opportunities for entrepreneurs of color.
Meaningful Support for Long-Term Success
The President of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, Carolyn Cawley, said of the challenges faced by Black-owned businesses: “From nationwide supply chain disruptions to worker shortages, Black small business owners are facing new and daunting challenges brought on by the pandemic. The strength of our economy depends on the success of these business owners.
“We look forward to working with our Coalition partners to empower more Black-owned businesses so they can recover from these challenges and continue to create jobs and opportunities in their communities.”
The Head of Corporate Social Responsibility at American Express, Madge Thomas, added: “We are proud to be a partner of CBBB and the truly impactful work it is doing to provide funding and educational resources to small business owners.
“As part of our ‘Backing Small’ efforts to invest in the small business economy, this program enables American Express and our partners to meet the urgent needs of Black business owners and provide meaningful support where they need it most to ensure long-term success.”
Financial Aid and Mentorships Until 2024
The funding for Black-owned businesses has been generated by contributions from a variety of organizations and foundations. These include ADP, the AIG Foundation, Altice USA (parent company of Optimum and Suddenlink), Dow, the S&P Global Foundation, Shopify, and Stanley Black & Decker.
In total, the coalition’s contribution has so far amounted to $14 million, which will continue to provide financial aid, mentorships and training for Black small business owners across the country until 2024.
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