Black women can get business grants to help them start or grow their businesses. Although this may sound appealing, small business grant contests have limited application windows and a lot of competition for small amounts of funding. It’s important to also tap into other resources.
We’ve collected a lot of grants for Black women in this list. Many of these grants are also open to female-identifying Black entrepreneurs. There are also organizations that assist Black women entrepreneurs in securing government contracts, pitching investors, and finding other funding opportunities.
These grants are only available to Black women who own businesses.
1. Fearless Strivers Grant Initiative
Fearless Strivers Grant Initiative grants $10,000 to specific cities, including Atlanta, Birmingham, Alabama, Dayton, Ohio, Los Angeles, New Orleans, New York City, and St. Louis. There are also 11 grants available nationwide. The winners also receive mentorship and digital tools.
2. SoGal Black Founder Startup Grant
These grants of $10,000 and $5,000 are intended to help Black women entrepreneurs who have “the ambition to become the next billion-dollar business.” You can apply at any time.
The SoGal Foundation administers the program and is funded by WinkyLux and Bluemercury as well as twelve NYC and Twilio. Read more.
3. Give a Legacy Grant to Help You Build It
The Pine-Sol and Essence administer this grant contest. It has one grand prize. In 2022, the winner was awarded $100,000 in grant funding, six months of business coaching, and six months of grant funding. To receive more information, sign up for the Pine-Sol newsletter Learn more.
4. HerRise Micro-Grant
The program provides $500 per month for a small business that is owned by a woman of color. The grant is a program offered by the Yva Jourdan Foundation (a nonprofit arm of HerSuiteSpot). Read more.
Black women could also be eligible for business grants
You may be eligible for grants that are not specifically targeted at Black women. There are also general grants that are available for Black entrepreneurs and Black business owners.
All entrepreneurs are eligible for other business grant programs, regardless of their ethnicity or gender. Register to receive notifications when the program reopens.
5. Small Business: Fast Break
The $10,000 grant comes with free LegalZoom services. LegalZoom, LegalZoom, and the NBA G League fund the program. Each year, applications are open during the NBA season. This usually runs from October through June. Read more.
6. Comcast RISE Investment Fund
Each funding cycle, the grant is targeted at different cities. Each city receives a $10,000 grant. You must be in business for at most three years, have less than 25 employees and have been in business for less than three years. Read more.
7. Coalition to Back Black Businesses
The partnership includes Shopify and American Express and offers Black-owned businesses $5,000 grants every fall. Many grantees will receive $25,000. After receiving mentorship and coaching, they can apply for another $25,000. After a period of mentorship and coaching, several grantees receive an additional $25,000. Read more.
8. Small Business Grant from Power Forward
The grant is open to Black-owned New England businesses. This program is funded by VistaPrint and the Boston Celtics Shamrock Foundation in partnership with NAACP. It awards $25,000 grants on an ongoing basis. Learn more.
9. The Amber Grant Foundation
Monthly grants of up to $10,000 are awarded by the Amber Grant Foundation to female entrepreneurs to help them launch their businesses. You could also be eligible to receive the Amber Grant’s annual $25,000 grant if you are awarded one of the $10,000 monthly grants.
You will need to fill out an application form on the Amber Grant website. This allows you to tell the organization about your company and how you plan to spend the grant money. You will need to pay $15 for the application fee. Learn more.
10. NASE Growth Grants
The National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE) was founded in 1981 and is committed to supporting microbusinesses and entrepreneurs. NASE members can apply for grants up to $4,000 through its grant program to fund a specific need such as hiring staff, buying equipment or launching a marketing campaign.
The organization grants one grant each month and reviews applications on a monthly basis. You must be a member of NASE for at least three months to apply for a NASE Growth Grant. Learn more.
11. FedEx Small Business Grant Competition
FedEx’s annual grant competition awards a $50,000 grant and $4,000 in FedEx business and print services to the three grand prize winners every year. Other grand prize winners also receive grants. U.S.-based companies with at least six months of business experience and fewer than 99 employees are eligible to participate in the contest. Learn more.
Black women entrepreneurs have access to other resources
12. Black Girl Ventures
Black Girl Ventures (or BGV) states that its mission is to “provide Black/brown women-identifying founders access to community capital and capacity building.” Its flagship offering is its crowdfunded pitch competition. Participants have three minutes to pitch their idea, followed by a three-minute Q&A session with professionals in front of an audience. All teams are eligible to keep the capital raised. Cash prizes will be awarded to the top three teams. Find out more.
IFundWomen (or IFW) helps female founders of all races and ethnicities to raise capital via crowdfunding. They also provide coaching, networking, and grant opportunities. The grants hub of the organization aggregates all available grant opportunities for women and provides information about current application deadlines. Learn more.
14. Minority Business Development Agency
The Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) is a federal agency that supports minority-owned businesses. It operates in the same way as the U.S. Small Business Administration or SBA. MBDA also has locations throughout the country where minor entrepreneurs can get financial assistance and consult. Read more.
Grants.gov allows federal agencies to post information about grant programs, specifically for minority-owned companies, as well as details about eligibility requirements and deadlines. There are many search criteria that you can use to find grants, such as your industry and the sponsoring federal agencies. Find out more.
16. SBA 8(a), Business Development Program
SBA 8(a), Business Development Program, is an assistance program that assists “economically and/or socially disadvantaged” business owners in securing a government contracts.
The federal government will dedicate 5% of its annual contracting budget each year to small businesses owned or operated by underrepresented entrepreneurs through the SB 8(a). Federal contracting program. Entrepreneurs can get the support they need through the Business Development Program, which includes one-on-one advice.
17. Fund for Female Founders
The Female Founders Fund is a great option for tech entrepreneurs looking to raise early-stage capital. The FFF invests in business-to-business, consumer, fintech, and health care businesses that have at least one female founding member, and it primarily focuses on investing in seed-stage businesses. On average, the fund invests $6-8 per year. Investments range from $500,000 to $750,000. Read more.
18. Women’s Business Centers
There are over 100 SBA Women’s Business Centers across the country. Although most do not grant grants, these centers can provide support for women business owners by providing classes, coaching, and capital. Find out more.
Black women have other options than small-business grants
Business grants may not be the right fit for all companies. Grants can be restrictive due to their limited application window, small funding amounts, and competitive judging process.
These are other funding options that you might consider for your business:
SBA microloans These loans up to $50,000 can be backed by the U.S. Government and are issued by non-profit community financial institutions. Many microlenders provide training and other resources that can prove to be very valuable for business owners. If you are a small or new business, they may be easier than other types.
Crowdfunding Many businesses can raise funds from their customers and supporters, regardless of whether they are friends or not. There are many crowdfunding options available, including donation-based support and investments that you promise to repay as your business grows.
Business credit card: Credit cards are useful for businesses that are already in operation. They allow you to keep up with your everyday expenses, even if your cash flow is not consistent. It is possible to find a card that rewards you for spending.
Peer-to-peer business loans: P2P loans are available from both established institutional investors and crowdfunding platforms such as Kiva. They are generally easier to get than bank loans for small or new businesses.
Business credit lines: If you require six-figure financing or more, a line of credit might be the right choice. These loans work in the same way as credit cards. You borrow what you need, then pay off your debts over time. Then, you borrow up to your limit again. However, lines of credit might require at least one year of business experience to be approved for.
Source: Nerd Wallet – https://www.nerdwallet.com/article/small-business/grants-for-black-women