HOUSTON, Oct. 1, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — As part of a continued commitment to uplift New Majority-owned small businesses across the United States, Hello Alice has joined forces with the NAACP to create the Black-owned Business Center to ensure the growth and advancement of small business owners. The center will deploy over $4 million USD in grants to Black-owned small businesses and provide mentorship to all who join. In addition to expanding economic opportunity for all Black and New Majority-owned businesses, all applicants will have full access to resources available on the Hello Alice platform, which includes small business how-to-guides, mentorship, digital support communities, and additional funding opportunities. Owners can access these dedicated resources and apply for the grant series by visiting blackbiz.helloalice.com.
This partnership reinforces the collective mission to secure the political, educational, social, and economic equality of rights for all persons, and also acknowledges that by percentage, Black women are the fastest growing group of entrepreneurs in the United States. Additionally, research proves that the pandemic’s impact has significantly disproportionately hurt Black-owned small businesses, making this commitment critical for ensuring the recovery and overall prosperity of America’s Black small business community.
“This is a powerful partnership that will help alleviate the most vexing challenges our entrepreneurs face when starting and growing a business,” said Derrick Johnson, President and CEO of the NAACP. “Specifically, the initiative will help provide access to capital and address the implicit bias in capital decisions. We are excited to bring together thousands of Black entrepreneurs in collaboration with Hello Alice.”
In addition to providing funding access through the grants program, the initiative will also engage small business owners and policymakers on priority issues critical to small business growth ahead of the 2020 presidential election through Hello Alice x NAACP’s Vote Small Biz platform, which seeks to elevate the collective opinions on what owners need to be successful in the next four years. Prompting owners to advocate, lead and learn, this platform will help the 93% of small business owners who vote to make their voices heard this election season. From supporting employees with time to vote — to speaking up about the policies that matter to their business — the platform gathers everything needed to ensure the #SmallBizVote rings loud this year.
“Investing in Black businesses and expanding and increasing access and opportunity is essential for the long term prosperity of the New Majority small business community,” said Elizabeth Gore, co-founder of Hello Alice. “The NAACP and Hello Alice are investing in the fastest growing group of entrepreneurs in this country. Through the Black-Owned Business Center, we must ensure Business For All through access to capital, mentors and resources.”
In August, Hello Alice released their “Impact of COVID-19 on Black Business Owners” data report, uncovering significant inequities faced by Black-owned small businesses during the pandemic. To better understand Black business owners’ current needs and to identify opportunities to support, Hello Alice collected and compiled demographic information, funding requirements, and operational challenges from 28,985+ Black owners, who applied for COVID-19 Business for All Emergency Grants. The resulting data report highlights:
- 69% of Black applicants for COVID-19 Business for All Emergency Grants identified as women
- 92% of Black entrepreneurs called on the government to step up and give them access to more emergency grants, ranging from $10k–$25k.
- Grants of that size would be put toward many things, including lost sales, as 68% of Black entrepreneurs said that was their biggest hurdle during this time of social distancing.
- Owners did not anticipate COVID-19 affecting their businesses for more than four months. Additionally, the Payment Protection Program (PPP) was designed to help owners for only two and a half months when it was launched.
Visit Hello Alice’s Black Owned Business Resource Center to apply for the grant series and to access a growing resource of networks and opportunities. Please direct all media requests to Christanna Ciabattoni, [email protected].
Founded in 1909 in response to the ongoing violence against Black people around the country, the NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) is the largest and most pre-eminent civil rights organization in the nation. We have over 2,200 units and branches across the nation, along with well over 2M activists. Our mission is to secure the political, educational, social, and economic equality of rights in order to eliminate race-based discrimination and ensure the health and well-being of all persons.
The NAACP is a c4 organization (contributions are not tax-deductible), and we have a partner c3 organization known as NAACP Empowerment Programs (contributions are fully tax-deductible as allowed by the IRS).
Please contact [email protected] should you wish to donate. In media attributions, please refer to us as the NAACP.
NOTE: The Legal Defense Fund – also referred to as the NAACP-LDF was founded in 1940 as a part of the NAACP, but separated in 1957 to become a completely separate entity. It is recognized as the nation’s first civil and human rights law organization, and shares our commitment to equal rights.
ABOUT HELLO ALICE
Hello Alice is a free, multichannel platform that helps businesses launch and grow. With a community of more than 220,000 business owners in all 50 states and across the globe, Hello Alice is building the largest network of owners in the country while tracking data and trends to increase the success rate for entrepreneurs. Our partners include enterprise business services, government agencies, and institutions looking to serve small- and medium-business owners to ensure increased revenues and promote scale. Co-headquartered in Houston and San Francisco, and founded by Carolyn Rodz and Elizabeth Gore, we believe in business for all by providing access to all owners including women, people of color, veterans, and everyone with an entrepreneurial spirit. To learn more, visit www.helloalice.com, as well as Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Facebook.