Longtime Washington, D.C. nonprofit community organizations City First Enterprises (CFE), The Coalition for Nonprofit Housing and Economic Development (CNHED), the Latino Economic Development Center (LEDC), Washington Area Community Investment Fund (Wacif), and Capital Impact Partners are partnering with JPMorgan Chase to continue the Greater Washington, D.C. Entrepreneurs of Color Fund (EOCF) through an additional $2 million contribution. Building on the original $6.65 million investment from JPMorgan Chase and the A. James & Alice B. Clark Foundation, the partners are projected to deploy $10 million during the program period. The fund is a partnership to forge new pathways to entrepreneurship in the region’s underserved communities by pairing low-cost capital with business advisory services to help entrepreneurs of color start and grow businesses, create jobs, and build wealth.
The opportunity to drive economic growth by investing in entrepreneurs of color is real.
According to Global Policy Solutions, if people of color owned businesses at the same rates as white entrepreneurs, the result would be 9 million more jobs and an additional $300 billion in worker income. However, economic opportunity is out of reach for many entrepreneurs of color, who lack access to resources that can put them on the path to launch and grow a business and build wealth.
The EOCF partners aim to reverse this gap by providing loans from $5,000 for new businesses and up to $250,000 for established and growing businesses. We can also discuss larger tailored capital investments for businesses ready to scale. Funds are used for all stages of business development, from starting up to funding business growth.
Financial capital and knowledge capital are more catalytic together. That’s why the EOCF pairs the right financing with the right business advice – whether it’s through guidance with your application, one-on-one business mentoring, or a tailored business accelerator – to support business growth and long-term sustainability.
If you are an entrepreneur in the Greater
Washington, D.C. region and you need assistance to
launch or grow your business, we invite you to
connect with us:
Through our combined efforts, the EOCF partners are working to create a variety of impact across the Washington, D.C. region, including:
Providing capital to update and invest in the storefronts, inventory, and service delivery systems, as well as technical assistance for minority-owned small businesses along commercial corridors in Washington, D.C.’s Wards 7 and 8; and, supporting the preservation of long-standing minority-owned small businesses in commercial corridors to mitigate the impact of large-scale infrastructure projects.
Replicating the success of the Equitable Development Initiative in Detroit, the Entrepreneurs of Color Fund will work with Capital Impact Partners to provide tailored low-cost capital to support minority housing developers in the region.
The EOCF will also work to increase diversity in supplier pipelines. Wacif and the Coalition for Nonprofit Housing and Economic Development offer the capital and advice needed for more local minority-owned businesses to scale and secure contracts from Washington-region anchor institutions, which have committed to purchasing more than $2 billion in supplies and services from diverse businesses in the region.
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