In the News: Tens of Thousands of Dollars up for Grabs From Amazon, eBay, TikTok and Others

The grants private companies and organizations offer to small businesses provide invaluable help when an entrepreneur needs it most. And while the help is greatly welcomed by those that win the grants, they are limited in how much help they can offer. And this is why when you see a grant being offered from them, you should apply as soon as possible.

No matter how much the amount is, it is money that can help a small business overcome financial hurdles during hard times. Before you apply, make sure you qualify for the criteria the grant requires, and as always, apply and apply early. The grants in this week’s roundup come from known brands as well as public organizations in communities across the U.S.

EBay’s 2023 Up & Running program has been unveiled to grant annual support and technology to aspiring small business sellers on the platform. This program strives to empower entrepreneurs by offering them resources to enhance their stores, acquire new equipment and inventory, expand their workforce, provide training opportunities, and boost marketing efforts.

As part of the National Small Business Week observance, TikTok has made a noteworthy pledge by committing $1 million to the Hispanic Heritage Foundation (HHF) and Black Girl Ventures. These two organizations are dedicated to empowering entrepreneurs and promoting economic development. In line with this commitment, eBay will also be granting 50 U.S.-based small businesses.

Amazon Business has recently kicked off its second annual Small Business Month, featuring the 2023 Small Business Grants launch. This program offers a fresh round of grants, with over $250,000 available for small businesses. There are also grants from public organizations address a range of issues with up to $25,000 in grants.

Small Business News May 12, 2023

Higher prime lending rates, labor shortages, SBA disaster loan deadlines and other news roundup the rest of the small business happenings this week.

Survey: Small Business Owners Remain Optimistic for 2023 Despite Q1 Challenges

IOU Financial Inc., a leading online lender for small businesses, has released its April 2023 State of Small Business Survey, which reveals that despite a slow start to the year, small business owners are maintaining a positive outlook for the remainder of 2023. The survey captures the opinions of 198 small business owners, with a 7% margin of error and a 95% confidence level.

Middle-Market Companies Adopt Modern Payment Methods, Yet Traditional Modes Persist, Citizens’ 2023 Survey Reveals

The 2023 Payment Trends Survey conducted by Citizens has found that while corporate treasury departments are increasingly adopting modern payment methods, such as social tokens, real-time payments, and virtual cards, traditional payment modes like checks, automated clearing house (ACH), and physical credit cards continue to maintain a strong presence in the market.

Snap Unveils New Advertising and Creator Collaboration Opportunities.

At the 2023 IAB NewFronts, Snap introduced a range of new solutions for advertisers, content partnerships, and collaborative opportunities for creators on Snapchat, showcasing the platform’s commitment to supporting small businesses and fostering relationships with their community of 750 million monthly active users.

Apple Financials: Services Revenue Hits All-Time High

Apple has announced its financial results for the second quarter of fiscal 2023, with quarterly revenue of $94.8 billion, a 3% decrease year over year, and quarterly earnings per diluted share of $1.52, unchanged year over year. Despite the challenging macroeconomic environment, Apple achieved an all-time record in Services and a March quarter record for iPhone sales.

Microsoft Bing and Edge Launch New AI-Powered Search

Microsoft has announced significant advancements in its AI-powered Bing search engine and Edge browser, promising a more powerful, visual, and productive search experience.

Inside Zoholics 2023: Business Leaders Share Their Insights

Small business owners are always looking for ways to improve their business processes and automate tasks that will help them grow their businesses. Zoholics 2023, a sold-out conference held at the AT&T Hotel and Conference Center in Austin, Texas, was the perfect opportunity for these small business owners to network and learn from experts and fellow users.

TikTok Introduces Pulse Premiere, Connecting Brands with Premium Publisher Content

TikTok has announced the expansion of its TikTok Pulse advertising solution with the addition of Pulse Premiere, a new feature that enables advertisers to place their ads directly after premium publisher content in TikTok’s For You feed.

Citizens Financial Group Increases Prime Lending Rate to 8.25%

Citizens Financial Group, Inc. has announced a prime lending rate increase for Citizens Bank, N.A., raising it from 8.00% to 8.25%, effective Thursday, May 4, 2023. The change in the prime rate will impact small business owners who rely on borrowing funds for their operations and growth. Citizens Financial Group, Inc. is among the nation’s oldest and largest financial institutions, with $222.

Barclays Awards $255K in ‘Small Business Big Wins’ Promotio

Barclays US Consumer Bank celebrated National Small Business Week by announcing the winners of its third annual “Small Business Big Wins” promotion. This year, the competition attracted over 14,000 entries, highlighting the resilience and innovation of small businesses across the country.

WhatsApp Introduces New Poll Updates and Enhanced Media Sharing Features

WhatsApp is introducing new updates to its polling and media sharing features, aimed at making group chats more engaging and productive for users, including small business owners. These updates enable single-vote polls, make searching for polls in chats easier, and provide notifications when users vote on polls.

AT&T Partners with DFW Airport to Enhance Connectivity

AT&T has announced a partnership with Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) to provide a comprehensive wireless platform (CWP) that will improve connectivity and critical infrastructure at the airport. This move aims to support airport operations and offer reliable, high-capacity connectivity for both airlines and passengers.

NFIB: Small Business Owners Struggling with Labor Shortage and Job Openings

The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) has released a new jobs report, revealing that small business owners continue to face significant challenges in finding workers. A staggering 45% (seasonally adjusted) of all owners have reported job openings they could not fill during the current period, a figure that exceeds the 49-year historical average of 23%.

IRS Encourages Small Businesses to Prepare for Reporting Changes in 2023

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is urging small businesses to plan ahead to take advantage of tax-saving opportunities and prepare for reporting changes in 2023. As part of National Small Business Week, the IRS highlights potential tax benefits and reporting adjustments that could affect businesses next year.

Mastercard’s New Digital Doors Marketing Hub Boosts Small Business Digital Growth

Mastercard has announced the next evolution of its Digital Doors program, set to launch on May 4, in celebration of Small Business Month. The initiative aims to provide an expanded suite of innovative tools, resources, and benefits to help small businesses enhance their digital operations and growth.

Deadline Approaching for California SBA Disaster Loans

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has reminded California private nonprofit organizations that they have until June 2, 2023, to apply for federal disaster loans for property damage caused by severe winter storms, straight-line winds, flooding, landslides, and mudslides that began on February 21, 2023.

Should Non-Compete Agreements Be Banned by the FTC?

One of the most talked about issues with people changing jobs or selling their companies is the necessity and validity of non-compete agreements. This employment law varies by state with California being the strictest against people signing them. Are they and should they be legal is something that the FTC is discussing and their decision could affect 30 million people.

Meta Q1 2023 Security Reports: Small Businesses Must Remain Vigilant Against Cyber Threats

Meta has recently published its Q1 2023 Security Report, highlighting the company’s ongoing efforts to combat cyber threats, malware campaigns, and covert influence operations. Small business owners should take note, as these threats can have significant impacts on their businesses if not adequately addressed.

Houston Man Sentenced to Prison for $3M PPP Loan Fraud Scheme

A 47-year-old Houston man, Scott Jackson Davis, has been sentenced to 102 months in federal prison followed by three years of supervised release for a $3 million PPP loan fraud scheme. U.S. District Judge David Hittner also ordered Davis to pay restitution of $3,002,655.13.

Former Mississippi Tax Preparer Pleads Guilty to Conspiracy to Defraud the US Government

A former Mississippi tax preparer, John Wells Jr., has pleaded guilty to conspiring to defraud the United States by preparing false tax returns. Wells worked at Sunbelt Tax Services, a return preparation business based in Jackson, Mississippi, from 2015 through 2017.

Facebook Enhances Personalization and Discoverability for Reels, Benefiting Small Businesses

Facebook is introducing new personalization controls for its Reels feature, allowing users to better tailor their experience to their preferences. This update has the potential to benefit small business owners who utilize short-form video content as part of their marketing strategies.

New Jersey CPA Pleads Guilty to Tax Fraud Scheme Involving Fraudulent Syndicated Conservation Easements

A certified public accountant (CPA) from Avon-by-the-Sea, New Jersey, James H. Benkoil, pleaded guilty to conspiring to defraud the United States by promoting fraudulent tax shelters to high-income clients. The announcement came from Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division.

Small Business Owners Embrace Managed IT Services for Cybersecurity Confidence

According to a recent survey commissioned by Cox Business, 90% of small business owners feel confident in their ability to navigate cybersecurity risks due to the support of managed IT services. The study also reveals that cybersecurity is a key driver for businesses investing in these services, with 42% of respondents preferring to outsource their IT needs.

Domino’s Pizza Posts Strong Q1 2023 Financial Results Amid Ongoing Business Resilience

Domino’s Pizza, Inc., the world’s largest pizza company, reported impressive financial results for the first quarter of 2023, showcasing the resilience of its business model amid a challenging global economic climate. The financial results reflect a robust increase in sales growth and earnings per share (EPS).

NFIB Survey Reveals Small Businesses Prefer Smaller Banks and Value Customer Service

The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), the nation’s leading small business advocacy organization, recently released a survey assessing small businesses’ relationships with banks. Conducted via email from April 14-18, 2023, the survey provides insights into small business banking operations and confidence in the banking system and the overall economy.

Deadline Nears for Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community Small Businesses to Apply for SBA Disaster Loans

Small businesses in the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community are urged to apply for federal disaster loans by the upcoming deadline of June 2, 2023. These loans are available to provide economic relief to businesses affected by the severe storms that occurred on July 17-18, 2022. Tanya N. Garfield, Director of the U.S.



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Joshua Sophy Joshua Sophy is the Editor for Small Business Trends and has been a member of the team for 16 years. A professional journalist with 20 years of experience in traditional media and online media, he attended Waynesburg University and is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists. He has held roles of reporter, editor and publisher, having founded his own local newspaper, the Pottsville Free Press.