Find where and how to get free grants or loans for your business below. There are funds allocated to women, Latino, LGBTQ, Black, and other minority owned businesses in New York. Small business owners, entrepreneurs, and start up companies may be able to get financing from a number of lenders. Find programs from lenders, corporations, banks, non-profits and other agencies that may be near you.
The loans and/or grants are for any small to medium sized business that meets the lenders application criteria. However each of the programs listed below will allocate some (or all) of the funds to women and/or minority owned businesses in New York state. Not only may capital be given to the small business owner, but the organizations also give other support. This may include, but is not limited too, free mentoring, technical support, help creating business plans, networking advice and so much more. All of this assistance will be free.
There are business loans and free grants across the state. There are options in the New York City area as well as major citizens of Rochester, Buffalo, Syracuse, and other cities or towns. Minority owned (or run companies) as well as women and veteran can apply for financial aid and counseling from an agency near them.
Find business loans as well as free grants for women or minorities in New York
The list of resources below is updated daily. Everything from grants, free counseling, microloans, financing and more may be offered. As noted, priority is given to disadvantaged groups in New York. This may include veterans, Black owned businesses, Latinos, women run companies and others.
The Central New York Community Foundation is providing financial help to Black owned businesses in Syracuse, Onondaga County and nearby regions. The assistance program is known as the Black Equity and Excellence Fund. Grants, loans, coaching services and other aid can go to non-profits, charities, businesses hat focus on education or tech companies and others. Female, Black owned businesses as well as those started/owned by Black Males can apply. More information here. https://cnycf.org/equity#.YAV6u-hKhM1
Empire Sate Development operates in all cities, towns, and counties. While they operate a number of businesses development programs (tax abatements, corporate relocations, interest free loans, job training, etc.) they also operate the Division of Minority and Women’s Business Development. They help businesses certify, can direct owners to various capital programs that assist with small business financing, help MWBE businesses in NY win government contracts and more. Read about the government organization here. https://esd.ny.gov/doing-business-ny/mwbe
$800 million in grants are being provided by the Empire State Development to small businesses across the state. The funds will help businesses that have been closed (for a period of time), had a reduction in revenue, or were otherwise impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. A major focus is on disadvantaged businesses such as Black, Latino, Immigrant, Women, and Veteran owned businesses. Funds are for “very small” businesses or even sole-proprietors from the Pandemic Small Business Recovery Grant Program. Apply here. https://esd.ny.gov/covid-19-loans-grants-and-technical-assistance-small-businesses
NYC based Latinx, immigrant, women, and minority owned companies can apply for free grants of up to $10,000 from LISC of NYC. The non-profit lender is working with the New York Women’s Chamber of Commerce to help small businesses. Funds are available in all boroughs, including Queens, Manhattan, Bronx, Staten Island, Brooklyn, etc. Read more. https://www.nywcc.org/
Businesses in the NYC region can get free information, referrals, and advice from Fair Share NYC. They city has a phone number and website to help small businesses, including minority, immigrant, and women owned, get PPP loans, charitable grants, and other support. A main goal is to help businesses that need guidance during the COVID pandemic. Learn more here https://www1.nyc.gov/nycbusiness/article/paycheck-protection-program-ppp or dial 888-SBS-4NYC.
New York City small businesses, that are based in lower income boroughs, can get zero percent interest rate loans. The government assistance program is the Storefront loan program, and is being run by the Department of Small Business Services. As many as 350 small to mid sized businesses, most of which will be minority owned or owned by immigrants or females, can get up to $100,000. There may be loans for businesses in Chinatown, Harlem, and other neighborhoods. Applicants need to have been cash flow positive and have under 100 employees. Read more. https://www1.nyc.gov/nycbusiness/article/nyc-lmi-storefront-loan
October and November 2020
Buffalo and Erie County businesses can get up to $25,000 in grants. All applicants need to have less than 51 employees. The size of the company, as well as the revenue, will help determine the amount of grants paid out. Black owned businesses, Asians, immigrants, veterans, etc. who have a business in Buffalo are given priority. All funds are first come and served, and the money can pay rent, salaries, marketing costs, infrastructure and more. Read more here. https://www.ecidany.com/
New York City small businesses can turn to Sterling Bank and the Charitable Foundation. Over 1000 small businesses, start ups and entrepreneurs can get financial help as well as other free business support. The foundation from the bank is helping individuals of color as well as female business owners or sole-proprietors. There is counseling, coaching, webinars and more. All assistance, including free grants or technical help, is offered one on one with the business owner. https://www.snb.com/sterling-national-bank-charitable-foundation
Brooklyn business owners can get financial help as well. This is a volunteer/donation program in known as the Bring Back Brooklyn Fund. The funds collected are for immigrants, minorities, women, and other nationalities in the diverse Brooklyn area. All grants and money is spent locally. Get more details. https://fundrazr.com/BCC-BringBrooklynBack?ref=ab_48xd2f_ab_8QrqyDrAvRv8QrqyDrAvRv
Albany New York COVID-19 Small Business Adaptation Program (SBAP) is providing up to $20,000 in direct reimbursement grants to women, minorities, veterans, and disadvantaged businesses. The city is partnering with Albany Community Development Agency (ACDA) as well as the City of Albany Industrial Development Program. There is money for businesses as well as non-profits. https://capitalizealbany.com/grants/
New York Forward Loan Fund was created to provide free grants as well as working capital loans to small businesses, with a focus on MWBEs (Minority and Women companies). It focuses on business that did not receive funding from the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program and Economic Injury Disaster Loans. The funding is run in partnership with M&T Bank; London, England–based HSBC; Morgan Stanley as well as Wells Fargo. Non-profits also participate, including Ford Foundation; BlackRock Charitable Fund; Citi Foundation; and the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation. https://forward.ny.gov/
By Jon McNamara