Small to mid-sized minority and female owned businesses in Georgia can get financial help in the form of free grants or low interest rate, or forgivable loans. Find government programs, lenders, charities, corporations and other places to get financial assistance near you in Georgia below. Learn where and how to get everything from free business consultations to grants, mentoring programs, loans, and other assistance.
Any business can apply. However each of the agencies as well as assistance programs has committed to helping disadvantaged businesses in Georgia. This includes minorities (Black, Latino, Asian, immigrants, etc.), veterans, women in Georgia, and LGBTQ businesses. Any free grants (whether from a non-profit or the government) is combined with other help, including technical assistance, financial advice, budgeting, counseling, and more. Businesses that get loans will also get other support as well. A major focus is on providing grants to Black owned male and women owned businesses in the state and Atlanta.
Find small business financial assistance programs in Georgia, including in Atlanta, Augusta, Savannah and statewide. Everything from low cost loans to grants, capital, or funds to pay certain operating expenses may be offered, with priority for MWBE and BIPOC businesses (businesses owned by people of color) in Georgia.
Find minority and female business grants and loans in Georgia
The list of programs is updated daily. As noted, anyone can apply. But funds and support will be focused on Black, Latino, Veteran, and female owned companies among other disadvantaged businesses.
Ongoing, year round free grants, business coaching, and loan programs
A number of free grant, loan, coaching services and financial assistance programs operate year round in Georgia. Find details below by “category”, including by ethnicity, gender, and or city/county/geography. Some assistance is available monthly too, and scroll down the page to find more loan or grant programs.
Statewide financial resources and coaching services
Georgia Microenterprise Network (GMEN) is a statewide organization that offers support for small businesses and entrepreneurs. There are free training sessions, classes, network events and other services. The free network also provides information on government grants or low cost (or interest free loans) from lenders. GMEN operates year round with a diverse set of businesses involved, including those owned by women, people of color, veterans, LGTBQ+ and others. More details on GMEN here. https://gmen.org/
Atlanta area (all surrounding counties) assistance programs for MWBE businesses
Atlanta area, Black and Brown owned businesses can get help from the Village Micro Fund. They are a Kiva Trustee as well, meaning the Fund can help facilitate microloans at zero percent interest rates. There are business education workshops, loans to grow or start a small businesses, a “Fellowship Program” and much more. They focus on helping the underserved community. Learn more on the non-profit here. https://www.villagemicrofund.com/
Atlanta MSA Black entrepreneurs can get help from the Russell Innovation Center for Entrepreneurs (RICE). The facility allows Black men and women owned businesses to learn about grant programs. There are workspaces for use, networking, coaching programs, It is an incubator service that helps startups grow, address any issues around funding or growth rates and offers other assistance. Continue reading here. https://russellcenter.org/
Women owned businesses in the metropolitan area of Atlanta (and all several counties surrounding the city) can get help from the Women’s Entrepreneurship Initiative (WEI). They help women create and/or launch a business, and all that involves. There are referrals to government and charitable grant programs, low cost loans, business plan development, mentoring, education, and so much more. Women of all ages, races, ethnicities, etc. can get help. Learn more about the center here and the assistance programs offered. https://www.weiatlanta.com/
The United Way of Greater Atlanta, working with other lenders (including Wells Fargo) and non-profits such as Invest Atlanta, provides help to small business owners, with a focus on minority, veteran, Black owned, and women owned as well as “diverse” businesses. The United Way help facilitates microloans, helps businesses pay the rent, get capital and offers other financial help as well as training services. Learn more on grants, Invest in Atlanta financial assistance programs, and get other help here. https://www.investatlanta.com/
Augusta region and central-eastern GA
Greater Augusta Black Chamber of Commerce Foundation will, from time to time, give free grants as well as training to help Black males and/or females start a businesses. However they do provide services year round to members. They can help minority business owners network, offer mentorships, referrals to non-profits, and a host of other services. Learn more. https://mygabc.org/
Central Georgia grant and loan programs
Macon and central Georgia area business, including underserved ones (Black, Women, Veteran, LGBTQ, etc.) can get help from Newton Macon. They are a small, CDFI lender that not only provides capital to businesses that often lack access to funds, but they also coordinate other assistance. Website and business plan development, networking, mentoring, and other programs are offered in the region. Learn more on their services as well as loans. https://www.newtownmacon.com/loans/ Another option in Macon area is the non-profit NewTown Macon’s Godsey Initiatives Fund. They help women and businesses of color start and/or grow through a number of programs.
May and June 2022
Atlanta area businesses can apply for free $10,000 grants from Comcast Rise. The financial assistance will be combined with technical assistance, marketing support, free internet access, coaching and so much more. The cable provider is providing the free grants to businesses owned by women and/or people of color, including Latino, Indigenous, Black, Asian American or immigrants. The company needs to be a “small business” and independently owned. Apply for Comcast Rise Grants in Atlanta here. https://www.comcastrise.com/rise-apply/
Fulton County Recovery Loan Program and Access to Capital for Entrepreneurs (ACE) are working together to provide low cost (or interest free loans) of up to $10,000 to small business owners. There are also business advisory services provided. Priority is given to businesses that were most impacted by COVID as well as disadvantaged businesses that lack access to capital, such as women, minority, LGTBQ and veterans. Continue reading. https://aceloans.org/fulton/
Chatham County and Savannah businesses can apply for free government grants that are being issued as part of the American Rescue Plan Act. A major focus is on service businesses, including minority and women, that were impacted by COVID. This can be a restaurant, hotel, travel business, hairdresser, or countless other small to mid-sized businesses that are in the service industry. The money can help pay for operating costs, rent, utilities, inventory and other expenses. Learn more on the Chatham Small Business Grant Program by dialing 912-335-5314.
February and March 2022
Small businesses in the city of Atlanta can apply for financial help from the Resurgence Grant Fund. Up to $40,000 may be given to each business. The money will go towards helping small businesses, including minority, veteran and women-owned recover from COVID. The assistance program is known as Invest Atlanta, and it can even help more mid-sized businesses such as those with up to 250 employees. Find more details. https://www.investatlanta.com/businesses/small-businesses/resurgence-grant-fund
November and December 2021
Restaurants in the Atlanta region can apply for financial aid and free grants from the QuickBooks Restaurant Relief Initiative as well as the Georgia Restaurant Association (GRA). The corporation and non-profit are working together to help bars, restaurants, cafes, and food service places. A major focus is on helping disadvantaged, MWBE as well as veteran owned restaurants. The grant money can help pay for bills, salaries, rent, and other operating costs. The funds are for smaller businesses. Apply here. https://mailchi.mp/5157303a77f4/grafoundation
January 2021 and February 2021
Metro Atlanta Chamber is offering RESTORE ATL grants. The financial assistance, in the form of free grants, is for small as well as medium sized businesses in the greater metro area, including multiple counties. $5,000 to $10,000 may be issued to Black owned businesses. Apply here. https://www.metroatlantachamber.com/restore-atl-grant
Back2Business is an assistance program from FisServ, and black and minority owned businesses can apply for cash grants of up to $10,000. The funds are for the Atlanta region, including Fulton, Cobb, and Gwinnett County. Not only are funds used to help businesses impacted by COVID, but there is also free expert advise, SME programs, webinars, coaching and more. Partners include Atlanta Black Chambers, Metro Atlanta Chamber, and other non-profits are also supporting minority owned small businesses, including Salons, restaurants, bars, hotels, travel companies and other businesses. Apply here. https://aeoworks.org/fiserv/
November – December 2020
Free small business grants, counseling, technical help and assistance is offered to small, minority run businesses as well as entrepreneurs in Atlanta. The Atlanta Wealth Building Initiative is a non-profit that is trying to assist disadvantaged businesses. They provide mentoring (from business leaders), help black male and women owned companies get off the road, provide information on funding sources and loans, and much more. The goal is to help close the racial wealth gap. Continue reading here. https://www.atlantawealthbuilding.org/
Decide DeKalb offers the Better Business Loan Program is offering low cost loans to businesses under 20 employees. Each minority or female applicant/small business can be given at most $40,000. The non-profit is the Economic Development Agency for DeKalb County, and the business needs to be located there. The address is 125 Clairemont Avenue, Suite 150, Decatur, GA 30030. For information on the loans, dial 404.687.2730 or more details here. https://www.decidedekalb.com/
By Jon McNamara