Comcast recently announced it will award $1 million in total grants as well as technology and marketing resources to more than 100 Twin Cities small businesses owned by people of color. The recipients are among nearly 6,700 entrepreneurs nationwide who have been selected through the Comcast RISE program, which provides marketing, technology, and capital support to small business owners.
To further build on the program’s success and provide support to even more small businesses, Comcast also announced a major expansion to eligibility, enabling all women-owned small businesses nationwide to apply. This expansion recognizes and seeks to help address the persistent inequities women continue to face in accessing the resources and funding that are critical to success.
Comcast RISE and the Comcast RISE Investment Fund, initially launched as a response to help small businesses owners of color hardest hit by the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, continue to focus on uplifting small businesses, ensuring they continue to prosper in an ever-shifting post-pandemic economy.The full 100 businesses that received a $10,000 grant can be found here.
“This opportunity is a positive aspect to my business and the community. Not only will we be able to reach more future prospects, we’ll also be able to add a few employees to the team," said Henrietta Smaller of Stunning Beauty Supplies in Burnsville, Minnesota. “It feels great to know someone believes in me and my dream.”
“As we continue to rebuild and emerge from the eﬀects of the pandemic, small businesses will continue to be the backbone of our economy – and we must take every opportunity to help them thrive,” said Kalyn Hove, Regional Senior Vice President, Comcast Twin Cities. “Looking forward, this expansion will enable Comcast RISE to further empower and strengthen even more small businesses that are the heart of our local communities across the country.”
In the year since its inception, Comcast RISE has awarded more than $11 million in grants and $50 million in in-kind support for marketing and technology services, impacting more than 6,700 entrepreneurs of color in 432 cities across 34 states. By the end of 2022, 13,000 businesses across the country are expected to beneﬁt from the Comcast RISE initiative, either through the grant program or from the resources provided through Eﬀectv and Comcast Business. In addition to the ﬁnancial and business support services provided, a key part of the program is ensuring the long-term sustainability of businesses. To help address this, Comcast invests in and partners with organizations such as Ureeka to provide ongoing mentorship and resources to help small businesses succeed over the long-term.
Comcast RISE, which stands for Representation, Investment, Strength, and Empowerment, is part of Project UP, Comcast’s comprehensive initiative to advance digital equity and help provide underrepresented small business owners with access to the digital tools and funding they need to thrive. Over the next 10 years, Comcast has committed $1 billion to programs and partnerships that will reach an estimated 50 million people with the skills, opportunities, and resources they need to succeed in an increasingly digital world.
The program will continue to be open to racially and ethnically diverse small business owners and the expanded Comcast RISE eligibility to all women-owned businesses will be eﬀective on January 16, 2022. More information and the applications to apply for either the grant program or marketing and technology services are available at www.ComcastRISE.com.