Starting and growing a new business in the USA can be challenging, especially for minority entrepreneurs who may face additional hurdles in accessing capital and resources. However, there are many opportunities for Black-owned businesses, such as bank loans, tax incentives, grants, and more, available to assist startups, small businesses, and international icons.
One of the best options to consider for Black entrepreneurs looking to scale their game in 2023 is grants. Many minority small business grants and grants for Black-owned businesses do not need to be repaid, allowing entrepreneurs to receive funding without taking on additional financial risk.
To help you in your business journey this Black History Month, we’ve listed some of the best grants for Black-owned businesses you can apply for in 2023.
7 Grants for Black-Owned Businesses You Can Apply for in 2023
These are just ten out of several grants available for you in 2023. So before applying, research and discover what suits you and your business.
Here are a few tips you should put into consideration before applying:
- Ensure you meet the eligibility requirements
- Have all your documents and application essentials ready
- Apply on time. Most times, it is “first come, first served.”
- National Black MBA Association (NBMBAA) Pitch Challenge
The NBMBAA hosts the Scale-Up Pitch Challenge to support Black-owned businesses with ‘big ideas.’ The pitching competition requires entrepreneurs to present their business proposals for a chance to win the grand prize of $50,000.
Additional prizes include $10,000 for second place, $7,500 for third place, and $1,000 for the People’s Choice Award. The scale-up pitch challenge also offers excellent networking opportunities and exposure to donors.
- Power Forward Small Business Grants
Vistaprint and the Boston Celtics Shamrock Foundation have partnered with the NAACP to provide $1 million in funding for Black-owned small businesses through the Power Forward Small Business Grant.
The program offers $25,000 grants to eligible businesses in New England and aims to create lasting change by providing marketing and creative tools tailored to each recipient’s specific needs. Additionally, the program highlights grant recipients’ brands on national co-branded platforms, providing them with valuable exposure.
To qualify for the grant, businesses must be Black-owned, have 1-25 employees, and be based and operational in Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont, or select areas of Connecticut.
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- Keep It Local Business Fund
The Nextdoor Kind Foundation, in partnership with the NAACP, offers microgrants of $5,000 to entrepreneurs of color through the Keep It Local Business Fund program.
In addition to the grant, recipients will receive
- training on running a successful small business,
- access to Nextdoor’s Recession Playbook,
- opportunity to network with other grantees, and
- public acknowledgment for their community service.
- Wish Local Empowerment Program
Because of the systemic racism Black-owned small businesses face, Wish Local, an e-commerce platform, provides financial support to approximately 4,000 Black-owned businesses through a whopping $2 million fund.
The selected beneficiaries, who are Wish Labour Partners, will receive between $500 and $2000 each. This initiative is exclusively for Black-owned businesses and aims to promote equity and diversity in American companies.
- Fast Break for Small Business
Fast Break for Small Business, in partnership with the NBA, WNBA, and NBA G League, has invested $6M to help small businesses. And this time, their focus is to financially support Black-owned businesses by awarding $10,000 grants and a free LegalZoom product or service worth up to $500.
If you are a small business owner, this is a real catch. Since its existence, Fast Break for Small business has helped uplift over 5000 Black-owned small businesses; yours could be the next.
Grants for Black Female-Owned Businesses
- IFundWomen of Color
IFundWomen of Color seeks to empower diverse female entrepreneurs to achieve their dreams by offering $5000 grants, alongside accelerator programs twice a year, to 60 Black female-owned businesses.
In partnership with Caress and American Express, the IFWOC promises to provide access to debt-free capital, networking opportunities, mentorship, and other resources for female entrepreneurs of color.
It is a complete package to support female black-owned businesses!
- Amber Grant
Founded by WomensNet in 1998, Amber Grant seeks to honor the memory of a young woman, Amber Wigdahl, who died at 19 years old — just before she could achieve her business dreams.
Today, WomensNet awards at least $30,000 in Amber Grants monthly. Also, due to the diversity in female-owned businesses, the Amber Grant program has expanded to include different business categories alongside two $25,000 Year End Grants.
You can apply for the grant at any time to qualify for the next award with an entry fee of $15.
So, there you have it: Seven (7) grants for Black-owned businesses in 2023 that you can easily apply for. Do not sleep on this!
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