Facebook made good on its promise to support Black-owned businesses Wednesday by announcing that applications are now open for $40 million in grant funding.
Any business that is majority Black-owned and has between one and 50 employees may apply for grants worth $4,000 each — $2,500 in cash and $1,500 in Facebook ad credit. This means that Facebook plans to support up to 10,000 Black-owned businesses through the grant program.
According to Facebook’s web page for the grant program, funds can be used for (but aren’t necessarily limited to) rent, operational costs, employee payroll, customer engagement, and community support.
Interested business can apply now for the grant money. Applications close on August 31.
The funds come via part of Facebook’s $100 million promise to Black communities in the business sector. The other $60 million will go towards nonprofits and social media creators.
We’ll break down the program’s eligibility requirements below, as well as what your business needs in order to apply.
Facebook’s Black-Owned Business Grant Eligibility
The eligibility criteria for Facebook’s grant program is fairly straightforward. Businesses interested in applying must:
- Be at least 51% Black-owned.
- Be owned by someone above the age of 18.
- Be for-profit.
- Be legally registered within the US (excluding US territories).
- Employ between one and 50 people.
- Have been in operation for at least one year.
- Have been impacted by COVID-19.
Additionally, grant funds must be used in a way to benefit the business and its community.
Those who have already applied for grants from the Facebook Small Business Grants Program may re-apply for a Black-owned grant. However, prior recipients of a Facebook grant are ineligible to apply.
Applicants also do not need to be using Facebook products in order to apply.
How To Apply For A Facebook Black-Owned Business Grant
Like the eligibility requirements, applying for a grant through Facebook’s Black-owned grant program is pretty straightforward. Let’s go over a basic outline of what you need to do to apply for a Facebook Black-owned business grant:
- Head on over to the program’s portal on Submittable, a third-party submission management platform Facebook has partnered with for the program.
- Create a Submittable account, if you don’t already have one.
- Answer a series of basic questions to determine if your business is eligible for a grant.
- Fill in the contact information of the majority owner as well as the business’ information, which includes name, online presence, legal address, and business description and industry.
- Optionally submit additional demographic information about your gender, sexuality, veteran status, or disabilities.
After going through the basic paperwork, you must then:
- Share in under 300 words how your business was impacted by COVID-19.
- Select from a list of options how you’ll use the grant for your business.
- Describe in under 300 words how Facebook’s grant will impact your business.
- Select from a list of options how you’ll use the grant to support your local community.
- Describe in under 300 words how Facebook’s grant will impact your local community.
Once that information is filled out, you’ll need to e-sign the document, agree to the terms and conditions of the program, and certify that you are not a government official nor related to a government official before submitting the application.
Facebook also accepts applications that are in Spanish.
The application window will close at 9 PM ET, August 31. Applications will be sorted through “as quickly as possible” after that date. Facebook has partnered with Accenture to handle the administration role of the grant program.
Other Grant Options For Small Businesses
Besides Facebook’s grant program, we recommend that businesses impacted by COVID-19 look into potential avenues for grant funding. Black-owned businesses may be helped by our guide to grants for minority-run businesses. We also have a general guide to getting grants for your business.
For other routes of scoring money for your business, check out the nine ways a minority-owned small business can get financing.
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