Minority Small Business Grants

Minority Small Business Grants

Small business grants are unlike small business loans. A small business grant is money that recipients receive without expectation of repayment. 

Minority small business grants get the same assurance. Yet the funds are specifically for minority-owned businesses. Other small companies often do not qualify.

Minority small business grants help create more equality to minority business owners. It causes these grants to be highly competitive. 

Minority business owners can increase their chances by focusing on grant programs that fit business needs. Each should carefully review eligibility requirements, obligations, and qualifications.

Owners should also consider their business profile, plan, and location. Assessing all areas of the business is necessary before applying for a minority small business grant. 

It helps determine whether the business financial needs match the terms and conditions of each grant.

11 Small Business Grants For Minority-Owned Businesses

Here are eleven small business grants for minority-owned businesses.

Small Business Grants For Minorities

1. Merchant Maverick Opportunity Grants

Merchant Maverick Opportunity Grants provide ten $10,000 grants to eligible businesses yearly. 

The grants are for restaurants owned by Asian American and Pacific Islander entrepreneurs.

2. The FedEx Small Business Grant Contest

The FedEx Small Business Grant Contest is an annual, nationwide competition. It awards cash grants and prizes to small business owners and entrepreneurs. 

These grants are not specifically for minority-owned businesses. Yet, many past grand prize winners were minority business owners.

The number of grant recipients and the amount of money contest winners receive vary each year.

Nonprofits, franchises, independent consultants, and resellers do not qualify for this grant.

3. The National Association for the Self-Employed Growth Grants (NASE)

The National Association for the Self-Employed Growth Grants is a nonprofit trade association. NASE provides grants and educational resources for small businesses and entrepreneurs. 

The nonprofit selects a new winner each month with up to a $4,000 grant to support business growth and success.

It is a helpful resource for minority-owned businesses. Applicants must be businesses that are members in good standing.

4. The National Black MBA Association Scale-Up Pitch Challenge (NBMBAA) 

The NBMBAA recognizes scalable startups by providing Black-owned businesses with grants through its Scale-Up Pitch Challenge. The competition helps startups connect with venture capitalists and investors. 

Grant winners may also receive prizes ranging from $1,000 to $50,000 for their pitches.

The competition selects ten finalists to pitch their ideas to a team of experts. The top three finalists will compete at the annual NBMBAA Conference and Career Fair for a $50,000 cash prize. Second place winners receive $10,000, and third place gets a $7,500 prize. Winners of the People's Choice Award receive $1,000.

Applicants must be 18 years old and United States residents. All pitches and ideas must be the original work of applicants. 

The applicant must be a member of the National Black MBA Association. The minority-owned business founder must be Black or of African descent and have an equal interest in the business. 

5. Sephora Accelerate

Sephora Accelerate is a program that the beauty retailer Sephora offers to support minority-owned businesses. Sephora gives back to minority business owners by signing the Fifteen Percent Pledge. It commits at least 15% of shelf space to Black-owned businesses. 

The beauty retailer also offers minority entrepreneurs grants through the Sephora Accelerate program.

Applicants must be BIPOC founders of a beauty brand in its infancy. They must also be 18 years or older and have a sample or prototype before applying to the six-month program.

6. Coalition To Back Black Businesses Fund

The Coalition To Back Black Businesses helps Black business owners affected by COVID-19 with free minority business grants. 

Eligible small businesses can receive a $5,000 grant each Fall. A few companies receive $25,000 enhancement grants the following summer.

Applicant businesses must be hit hard by the pandemic and located in economically vulnerable communities, according to the Distressed Communities Index. 

7. SoGal Foundation Black Founder Startup Grant 

The SoGal Foundation Black Founder Startup Grant is a continuous grant program for Black women, Black nonbinary, multiracial Black women entrepreneurs.

The program provides $5,000 and $10,000 grants to minority-owned businesses.

Applicants must have a registered business in need of investor financing and have a scalable business or idea.

8. Asian Women Giving Circle Grants (AWGC)

Asian Women Giving Circle Grants helps New York City Asian American women-owned businesses. It provides ten grants of $8,000 each.

Eligible businesses include:

  • Social and political change documentaries
  • Choreography
  • Visual arts
  • Theater artists
  • Dance
  • Film
  • Street festivals
  • Workshops

9. Comcast Rise Grants

Comcast Rise Grants is a program the telecom giant offers to help minority-and-women-owned businesses affected by COVID-19. Prizes include grants and complementary marketing and technology services.

Applicants must be at least 51% owned and operated by an individual who identifies as:

  • Black
  • Indigenous
  • Hispanic
  • Asian
  • A woman

The business must be at least one-year-old and located within Comcast Business or Effectv service area. Franchises are ineligible.

10. First Nations Development Institute Grants

First Nations Development Institute Grants is a business development program for business owners of First Nations descent. The program also offers scholarships, apprenticeships, and other opportunities.

11. Fast Break for Small Business 

Fast Break for Small Business is a $6 million grant program.

The grant program focuses on reaching:

  • Entrepreneurs of color
  • Women
  • LGBTQ+ people
  • Low- to moderate-income small business owners
  • Immigrants
  • Others with limited access to financing

It is a collaboration among the following:

  • LegalZoom
  • The NBA
  • WBNA
  • NBA G League

Businesses can receive $5,000 grant money and LegalZoom services.

Government Grant Resources For Minority Small Business Owners

Here are several government grant resources minority small business owners should consider.

1. Grants.gov

Grants.gov is a searchable database of every grant program from across 25 grant-making federal government agencies.

Business owners must register through Grants.gov and provide their institution's DUNS number.

The federal government uses DUNS numbers to keep track of the distribution of federal grant money.

2. USDA Rural Business Development Grant

The U.S. department of Agriculture issues the USDA Rural Business Development Grant.

The grant is for minorities in rural areas. It supports businesses in technical help, business training, and expansion or development.

The grant helps small and emerging private businesses with 50 or fewer new employees. It must have less than $1 million in gross revenue.

3. Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA)

The Minority Business Development Agency helps connect minority business owners and entrepreneurs to federal contracts and other funding resources.

It helps minority business owners with the following:

  • Finding grants 
  • Finding loans 
  • Providing marketing
  • Providing legal help

Minority small business owners should check the eligibility requirements of each grant using the resources provided.

Small Business Grants For Minorities FAQ

To be eligible for the minority small business grant, you must be a minority-owned business with 500 or fewer employees. The business must also be for-profit, and either based in the United States or have a majority of its employees located in the United States. Additionally, the business must be in one of the following industries:

-Wholesale trade
-Retail trade
-Transportation and warehousing
-Finance, insurance, real estate, and rental and leasing
-Professional, scientific, and technical services
-Management of companies and enterprises
-Administrative and support and waste management and remediation services
-Educational services, health care, and social assistance
-Arts, entertainment, and recreation
-Accommodation and food services
-Other services, except public administration

If your business meets all of the above criteria, you may be eligible for the minority small business grant.

The Minority Small Business Grant can be used in a number of ways to help small businesses owned by minorities. The grant can be used to help with start-up costs, to expand a business, or to provide working capital. The grant can also be used to help pay for training and technical assistance for minority-owned businesses.

There are a few requirements that must be met in order to apply for a minority small business grant. Firstly, the business must be owned and operated by a minority group, such as African Americans, Hispanics, Asians, or Native Americans. Secondly, the business must be small, defined as having 500 or fewer employees. Finally, the business must be for-profit and located in the United States.

If your business meets these requirements, you can begin the application process by visiting the website of the Small Business Administration (SBA). There, you will find information on the various grants available, as well as the application process.