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Resources for Small Business Aid Amidst the COVID-19 Crisis

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As local businesses close their doors amidst the coronavirus pandemic, entrepreneurs and business owners worldwide are scrambling to make ends meet. If you’re in need of assistance during this time, consider the following resources for small business aid:


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GRANTS AND LOANS

Detroit Small Business Stabilization Fund

A program announced yesterday by TechTown CEO, Ned Stabler, TechTown will provide working capital grants up to $5,000 to qualifying small businesses. The program will be funded largely by the Quicken Loans Community Fund and by the Gilbert Family Foundation.

Applications for the Detroit Small Business Stabilization Fund are now closed. For more information, visit techtowndetroit.org.

Facebook Small Business Grants Program

In an effort to keep small businesses operating, Facebook is offering $100 million in cash grants to eligible businesses globally. As part of the program, Facebook will provide $40 million in grants to 10,000 U.S. businesses.

For more information, visit facebook.com.

Neighborhood Small Business Relief Fund

Amazon is committed to helping Seattle-based small businesses facing hardship due to COVID-19. The Neighborhood Small Business Relief Fund will provide $5 million in cash grants.

For details, and to apply for assistance, visit blog.aboutamazon.com

Michigan Small Business Relief Program

Powered by the Michigan Economic Development Fund (MEDC), the program will provide grants administered by a selection of local and nonprofit development organizations in support for small businesses impacted by COVID-19.

Applications are now closed. For more information, visit michiganbusiness.org.

Wayne County and TCF Bank Loan

Wayne County and TCF Bank announced a microloan program to help small businesses struggling to survive the coronavirus crisis.

To qualify for assistance, businesses must be located in Wayne County, with fewer than 100 employees and yearly revenue of $1 million or less. Available loan amounts will range from $5,000 to $50,000 with interest rates between 0 percent and 2 percent.

For full program details and eligibility, visit tcfbank.com.

JBF Relief Fund

The James Beard Foundation Food and Beverage Industry Relief Fund will provide aid to the food and beverage community impacted by COVID-19 in the form of microgrants.

A first round of $15,000 grants was made to 36 grantees in early April. The next round of grants is being awarded the week of April 20, and a final round the first week of May.

For more information, visit jamesbeard.org.

COVID-19 Relief for Women Owned Businesses

iFundWomen, a Kickstarter-like crowdfunding platform, has put together a relief fund for women entrepreneurs. Those in need can create a crowdfunded COVID relief campaign, and anyone with the means to donate can find a business they’d like to support and make a direct donation.

In addition to crowdfunding campaigns, iFundWomen is supporting female entrepreneurs through this trying time with free coaching and workshops.

For more information, visit ifundwomen.com/covid-19.

Honeycomb Crowdfunded Small Business Relief Loan

Honeycomb Credit is offering small business relief loans up to $50,000 with a six-month interest only period. The loans are community funded by Honeycomb’s crowdfunding platform. Additionally, Honeycomb’s Loyalty Bonds program allows small businesses to quickly raise cash by selling gift card subscriptions.

For more details and qualifications on both programs, visit honeycombcredit.com

Detroit Economic Growth Corporation (DEGC) fund

The DEGC, Detroit City Council and Economic Development Corporation of the City of Detroit announced a $3.1 million COVID-19 Grant Relief Fund for small businesses in Detroit. Grants will be made available to businesses impacted directly by the coronavirus with less than 50 employees, whose average net income is less than $1 million.

Applications to this program are no longer being accepted. Find the list of 120 plus businesses that received grant funding here.



INFORMATION/LEARNING

Tax Day delay

While not a form of monetary assistance, small businesses will be provided an additional 90 days to file their tax returns. Note that this applies only to federal tax income payments.

Webinars

SCORE

SCORE provides free resources for small business owners and entrepreneurs, including the following COVID-based live webinars:

Coping with COVID Lunch Hour Live: Q&A Sessions, powered by Bamboo

This series of webinars features speakers who share how they are navigating through business during the crisis, and answer questions. 

The schedule is as follows:

Find all previously aired Coping with COVID webinars here.

Michigan Small Business Development Center

The Michigan Small Business Development Center is offering an ongoing series of informational webinars.

Access all previously aired webinars on demand here.

Entrepreneur

Entrepreneur’s Crisis Management includes a series of COVID-19 webinars, including:

Previous webinars are available on demand here.

Inc. and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Inc. and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce have hosted several National Small Business Town Halls to help small business owners and sole proprietors navigate the programs that are available to them, featuring a moderated discussion.

Register for the latest session here, which will be held on Friday, May 15 at 12 p.m. EDT.

Previously hosted Town Halls can be found here.

Co by U.S. Chamber of Commerce

The U.S. Chamber’s digital platform for growth-minded business owners hosts Workshop Wednesdays each week to help entrepreneurs learn the skills needed to keep their businesses going.

You can replay previous Workshop Wednesday events here.

Salesforce

On demand webinars provide plenty of insights to entrepreneurs and small business owners coping with COVID-19. Upcoming webinars will be added as they are scheduled, including:

GoDaddy Social

Join GoDaddy Social and Nextdoor for a free webinar, “Customer Engagement: 4 Ways to Update Your Social Strategy for the New Normal” on Wednesday, May 27 at 1 p.m. EDT.

You’ll learn how to replace in-person communications with virtual ones, how to improve your 2020 business strategies and more.

QuickBooks

QuickBooks’ free webinar, “Survival Tips for Small Businesses During COVID-19,” covers how to approach the following topics:

  • Tap into customer loyalty
  • Get creative and ask for help
  • Build a website overnight
  • Use social media, email or SMS to reach out
  • Manage unsold stock or inventory
  • Launch a GoFundMe campaign

This webinar has now been presented; webinar slides can be found here

National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB)

NFIB is hosting an ongoing series of informative COVID-19 related webinars.

Previously recorded webinars can be found here.

Detroit Regional Chamber

Tune in to DRC’s upcoming tele-town halls, found here.

Each presentation will help small businesses prepare for the impact of the virus, and will conclude with a Q&A session.

Previous COVID-19 tele-town halls can be listened to here.

Facebook Live Town Hall on Small Businesses and COVID-19

Michigan state representative Mari Manoogian, Congressman Andy Levin, State Senator Mallory McMorrow and a representative from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) will share resources for small businesses during COVID-19 throughout this livestream.

The recorded town hall is now available for viewing here.

Credit card payment relief

Some credit card companies, like Amex, Bank of America, Discover and Capital One, are allowing business owners directly impacted by COVID-19 to skip payments, free of interest. Learn more here.

Equipment through Dell Technologies

For those working from home for the first time, Dell Technologies offers seamless Work From Home solutions to keep your productivity at its peak. Additionally, StartupNation members can access these work from home solutions at additional savings with an eight percent stackable coupon.

Visit www.Dell.com/StartUpNation to access these savings. For any questions around the best remote solution for you and your business, call our Small Business Advisors at 800-757-8442.

Yelp and GoFundMe donations

In an effort to assist small businesses facing temporary closures amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Yelp is automatically adding “donate” buttons to small businesses that are directly impacted. Yelp and GoFundMe plan to match donations up to $1 million. Check out this article for more details.

Additionally, the GoFundMe Small Business Relief Initiative allows business owners to start a fundraiser, and encourages donations from the public to these companies. The initiative also includes a small business relief fund, which will provide micro-grants to small businesses directly impacted by COVID-19, with a goal of $2,400,000.

Purchase gift cards now for later use

Kabbage, a company that provides small businesses with lines of credit, has set up a program to help small businesses through gift card sales. Any business can sign up to sell gift certificates online, and interested consumers can purchase the cards to use at a later date.

Profs on Call phone consultations

The College of Charleston School of Business has teamed up with the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce to provide free phone consultations to local businesses that have been impacted by COVID-19.

The program will match an expert faculty member from the school with those in need of assistance for a free 15 to 20 minute phone consultation. For more information, visit charlestonchamber.org.

Michigan Women Forward

An organization that aims to accelerate Michigan’s progress by advancing opportunity for women and girls, Michigan Women Forward has created the COVID-19 Entrepreneur Assistance Project. The program will match entrepreneurs impacted by COVID-19 with subject experts and contract workers.

Interested entrepreneurs can find more information here, or apply for assistance here.


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Editor’s note: We will be updating this page as additional relief sources become available. If you know of any assistance programs we missed, please share in our community forum.

Updated May 19, 2020

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