Wells Fargo announced another boost to Minnesota diverse small businesses recently with $1 million in grants from its Diverse Community Capital program, which offers capital and technical assistance to minority-owned small businesses through Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs). To date, the program has generated more than 103,000 jobs across the U.S.
“Small businesses are experiencing a time of rapid growth, but entrepreneurs are still struggling to reach their full potential,” said Jon R. Campbell, President of the Wells Fargo Foundation. “By working with CDFIs, we can fund efforts on the ground that remove barriers, expand highly personalized coaching and put more small businesses on a path to succeed, especially in underserved communities. Every community needs small businesses to create jobs and financial stability.”
As part of its new philanthropic strategy announced in June, Wells Fargo is focusing on three societal challenges: housing affordability, small business growth and financial health. Wells Fargo’s Diverse Community Capital (DCC) program is a critical component of the small business strategy and supports business owners who are African-American, Hispanic, American Indian/Pacific Islander, Asian-American, women, veterans, LGBTQ, people with disabilities, and other underrepresented groups.
The newest Minnesota DCC grantees, funded by the Wells Fargo Foundation, are:
- African Development Center, Minneapolis ($500,000): to expand loans and entrepreneurial training to more African immigrants and refugees in a new location in St. Cloud.
- Propel Nonprofits, Minneapolis ($500,000): to deploy patient capital with three-to-five-year loans and technical assistance for diverse nonprofits in the Twin Cities metro area, working to stabilize organizations serving the community.
“African Development Center would like to express our sincere thanks and appreciation for Wells Fargo’s continued support of our work with entrepreneurs that strengthens our communities,” said Nasibu Sareva, Executive Director of African Development Center of Minnesota. “This grant will enable us to expand our presence in St. Cloud with staff who will work with the large and growing African immigrant community, providing lending and technical assistance as they start and expand businesses.”
“This investment will allow us to provide more capital and support to mission-driven organizations,” said Kate Barr, President & CEO of Propel Nonprofits. “Diverse nonprofits in particular play a critical role in stabilizing and strengthening the communities they work in and with. Working capital loans paired with technical assistance will provide nonprofits flexibility as they face change.”
Launched in 2015, the Wells Fargo Works For Small Business®: Diverse Community Capital program is a collaboration with Opportunity Finance Network (OFN). According to OFN’s latest report, DCC awardees have already made more than 16,000 loans to diverse small business owners resulting in $785 million in lending across 37 states, Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico. In addition, grant funding has provided for more than 322,000 hours of development services for over 49,000 diverse entrepreneurs. Wells Fargo is on track to invest more than $175 million in diverse small business growth through 2020.
About Wells Fargo
Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE:WFC) provides banking, investment and mortgage products and services, as well as consumer and commercial finance, through 7,600 locations, more than 13,000 ATMs, and the internet (wellsfargo.com). With approximately 263,000 team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in the United States. With its corporate philanthropy, Wells Fargo aims to pave a path to stability and financial success for underserved communities by focusing on housing affordability, small business growth, and financial health, among other local community needs. In 2018, Wells Fargo donated $444 million to nearly 11,000 nonprofits. For 10 consecutive years, Wells Fargo has held the honor of No. 1 in workplace giving by United Way Worldwide. Wells Fargo team members also actively support communities by donating more than 2 million hours of volunteer time in the last year. News, insights and more information on the company’s overall corporate responsibility are available at Wells Fargo Stories and www.wellsfargo.com/impact.
About African Development Center
The African Development Center grows businesses, builds wealth and increases reinvestment in the African communities of Minnesota. Through workshops and consultations on financial literacy, business development and home ownership, ADC provides culturally competent services to Minnesota's African community. ADC is a leader in micro lending to small businesses, outperforming even the largest banking institutions in the state of Minnesota. Since 2004, ADC has been recognized multiple times as the number one small business lender in the city of Minneapolis. With the help of eight dedicated full-time employees, an Executive & Finance Committee and a Board of Trustees, ADC provides services in six languages to communities throughout Minnesota.
About Propel Nonprofits
Propel Nonprofits fuels the impact and effectiveness of nonprofits with guidance, expertise, and capital. As a federally certified Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), Propel Nonprofits offers loans to nonprofit organizations in Minnesota and adjacent communities to expand programs and services, bridge cash flow gaps, and purchase and renovate buildings. Additionally, the organization works with nonprofits in all fields of service by providing training, resources, and technical assistance to help organizations address unexpected events, finance new opportunities, and realize strategic goals.