What is it?
The Greater Washington, DC Entrepreneurs of Color Fund is a $6.65 million effort by JP Morgan Chase, Capital Impact Partners, and the A. James & Alice B. Clark Foundation to support minority-owned businesses in the Greater Washington region by providing them with access to capital and small business advice.
According to a May 2015 Wells Fargo study, entrepreneurs of color are more likely to report having credit challenges, be denied credit, and be in the start-up or growing phase when credit is most needed. Furthermore, a report by the U.S Department of Commerce, Minority Business Development Agency, found that minority business owners pay 1.4% higher interest rates, receive 48% lower loan amounts on average, and 33% of minority businesses making under $500,000 annually did not apply due to fear of rejection.
In an effort to combat this problem, the Latino Economic Development Center (LEDC), in partnership with JP Morgan Chase, Capital Impact Partners, the A. James & Alice B. Clark Foundation, Harbor Bank, and Wacif, is providing minority entrepreneurs in DC, Maryland and Virginia suburbs, and Baltimore City with access to capital and one-on-one technical assistance in order to create a more inclusive and diverse U.S. economy.
LEDC has been providing small business support to aspiring and existing small business owners since 1991. As a U.S. Department of Treasury certified Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), LEDC aims to help low-income residents in the Washington region prosper by providing them with access to capital and small business advice to achieve financial independence.
Who can apply?
Minority entrepreneurs in DC, Maryland and Virginia suburbs, and Baltimore City interested in receiving small business support – ranging from one-on-one technical assistance to access to financing – are encouraged to apply.
Entrepreneurs can get access to loans ranging from $5,000 - $250,000 that can be used for needs such as:
- Vehicles & equipment
- Working Capital
- Business expansion
- Renovation works
- Hiring additional personnel
All participating businesses will receive technical advice on topics such as:
- Website development
- Licensing and permitting