Black and minority-owned businesses need more than capital to thrive

Power Up Your Business is CCP’s neighborhood-based approach to economic development that offers free training to small businesse
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[Black and Latino Businesses]
Herman Nyamunga, the director of the Community College of Philadelphia’s (CCP) Power Up Your Business accelerator, believes entrepreneurship can be used as tool for Black and brown communities to fight poverty.
Photo: Community College of Philadelphia

Both Black and Latinx Americans have faced higher unemployment rates during the COVID-19 pandemic, and their businesses have been hit harder, too. In Philadelphia, active Black biz ownership fell by 68% from March to July, compared to 44% for white biz owners, per WHYY.

Herman Nyamunga, the director of the Community College of Philadelphia’s (CCP) Power Up Your Business accelerator, believes entrepreneurship can be used as tool for Black and brown communities to fight poverty — but supports are necessary, especially amid unprecedented challenges.

Power Up Your Business is CCP’s neighborhood-based approach to economic development that offers free training to small businesses. It was one of four local programs to share $180,000 in recent grant funding from AT&T designed to support Black and brown entrepreneurs. CCP received $80,000 to fund two cohorts for its new accelerator, PHL Community Startup Accelerator Program, which will aim to help 30 entrepreneurs at the launch or growth stages.

Nyamunga said AT&T’s assistant VP of external affairs in the Mid-Atlantic region, Joseph Divis, helped CCP secure the grant partly because he was impressed by Power Up Your Business’ overall representation of participants from low-income communities. And over 85% of Power Up participants have been minorities and women, he said.

In partnership with Lancaster Avenue 21st Century Business Association and CDFI Finanta, the new program specifically aims to address the larger question of what factors contribute to many Black and other minority businesses struggling over their lifetimes.

Read rest of story here: https://technical.ly/philly/2020/09/24/power-up-your-business-accelerato...

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