Minority Small Business Grants Ohio – Women and minority entrepreneurs can take advantage of recently announced Ohio State and Franklin County loan and grant programs.
The Franklin County Community Equity Fund is supporting black and brown small businesses during the coronavirus pandemic with stabilization grants of up to $10,000 each and start-up grants of up to $5,000 each.
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Applicants who meet the program’s requirements are also eligible for an additional $1,000 per W-2 employee (up to $5,000 each).
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Grant applications are open through Nov. 8 and can be found on the Columbus Urban League website, cul.org.
The fund was created by the Franklin County Business Growth and Equity Alliance, a partnership between the Franklin County Board of Commissioners, One Columbus and the Columbus Urban League. The Board of Commissioners invested $1,000,050 in federal funding from the 2021 America’s Rescue Plan Act.
“We have already received more than 3,500 applications for small business supplemental grants, applications in excess of $20 million,” said Stephanie Hightower, president and CEO of the Columbus Urban League. “This huge demand is an exciting way to highlight how eager black entrepreneurs are to be part of an inclusive economy where all businesses thrive and serve all races.”
Stabilization grants, known as open house grants, are available to Franklin County businesses with up to 25 employees that began operations on or before October 7, 2019.
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Start-up grants, known as New Business Grants, are available to Franklin County businesses with up to 25 employees that begin operations between October 8, 2019 and September 7, 2021.
Earlier this month, Governor Mike DeWine and Governor John Husted announced two new loan programs to benefit minority- and women-owned businesses in Ohio.
The Women’s Business Enterprise Loan Program offers loans between $45,000 and $500,000 each – at or below market rate and currently as low as 3%. Eligible businesses must be certified as Women-Owned Businesses (WBE).
The Ohio Micro Business Loan Program offers loans between $10,000 and $45,000 each at 0% interest. Eligible businesses must be certified as a WBE or Minority-Owned Business Enterprise (MBE).
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“Governor DeWine and Lt. Gov. Husted have made it clear from the beginning of their administrations that everyone has a stake in Ohio’s success,” Chief Development Officer Lydia Mihalik said in a news release. “These loans will provide a bridge to success for many of our minority- and women-owned businesses across the state.”
The Women’s Business Enterprise Loan Program was cut from $74 billion to $10 million in the last state budget. The Ohio Women’s Coalition helped push for more financial support for women-owned businesses through meetings with government officials, including Mihalik.
“When the budget came up and I saw the $10 million (fund) loan, I almost fell off my chair,” Rachel Winder, founder and executive director of the Ohio Women’s Coalition, said in a previous interview with . “I didn’t know it was definitely going to be included. So we’re super excited.”
According to the guidelines, the loans will be repaid within 10 years for plant and machinery and 15 years for owner-occupied properties.
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The Ohio Micro Business Loan Program was also written into the state budget for $10 million. These loans will be repaid within five years for fixed working capital and seven years for equipment. The Small Business Administration is now offering long-term, low-interest loans to Ohio businesses and nonprofits struggling financially due to the coronavirus crisis. (US Small Business Administration)
, Ohio – The Small Business Administration awards grants to 51 agencies to help entrepreneurs connect with state resources.
The grants are part of the SBA and the Biden-Harris administration’s “Community Navigator Pilot Program.” It is a US bailout initiative designed to lower barriers for small businesses, including those owned by disadvantaged groups, to access government resources.
“We need to meet businesses where they are, with the resources to get them started, grow and sustain, and the Community Navigator pilot program will strengthen the trusted network of community partners that will connect America’s entrepreneurs with the SBA,” Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman said in a news release .
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Grant recipients are divided into three levels. Including eight organizations that will offer support at the national level, 11 that will offer it at the state or capital level, and 32 that will offer support at the local level.
According to the SBA website, minority-owned businesses and mom-and-pop shops have been less successful in accessing programs during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The purpose of the Community Navigator program is to help small businesses more easily connect with resources such as financial aid and professional training.
According to a press release, the organizations that received the funding will increase their operations in the coming weeks to support local entrepreneurs.
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