Various grant opportunities available for women and minority owned businesses

If you are a woman or a racial minority running a small business, you can benefit from several small business grant programs. These initiatives generally aim to level the playing field and support groups that have traditionally faced barriers to funding. Read about several current and ongoing grant opportunities in the list below.

MBDA Capital Preparation Program

The US Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency is launching a nearly $100 million grant program to support women and minority entrepreneurs. The Capital Readiness Program is directing grants between $2 million and $3 million to business incubators and accelerators run by corporations, nonprofit organizations and universities. Therefore, funds will not go directly to small federal government businesses. But recipients must use the funds to provide services that can help women- and minority-owned startups overcome structural barriers. The program will focus on several high-growth sectors, including healthcare, climate technologies and infrastructure. Applications for this round must be submitted via by February 28.

ladies who launch

Ladies Who Launch is an annual grant program that provides funding for women and non-binary small business owners. This year, 20 of those companies will receive a $10,000 grant and six months of educational support. This funding round focuses on consumer packaged goods companies with annual gross revenues between $100,000 and $499,000. March 31 is the deadline to apply for the current program.

Fearless Fighters Award Contest

Mastercard is partnering with the Fearless Fund to support businesses owned by women of color. Eligible companies can now apply for grants of $20,000, along with digital tools and mentorship opportunities. The application portal is now available online and the program ends on August 31st.

The Amber Concession

The Amber Grant is a monthly grant program for women-owned businesses. Each month, WomensNet offers a donation of at least $30,000. And the organization also organizes themed scholarship contests throughout the year. The organization has an application form available online that will automatically enroll eligible female founders in all programs they qualify for. Subsidy recipients are then notified of their awards on the 23rd of each month.

Hello Alice

Hello Alice is a digital platform that connects many small businesses with resources, including exchanges. The organization works with a variety of corporate and non-profit partners on various programs and initiatives throughout the year. For example, Hello Alice is currently part of the SBA Community Navigator Pilot Program, working closely with the US Hispanic Chamber of Commerce to help Hispanic and minority entrepreneurs navigate supply chain issues and similar challenges.

IFundWomen Universal Grant Application Database

IFundWomen offers several grant programs throughout the year for women-owned businesses and people of color. The organization offers a universal grant application that eligible companies can use to apply for all programs at once. You can even store your information and sign up for updates, allowing you to easily sign up as new programs are released.

Quick break for small businesses

LegalZoom, the NBA, WNBA and NBA G League team up to offer the Fast Break for Small Business grant program during each basketball season. The program has provided more than $3 million in grants and other support services to qualifying businesses. And minority entrepreneurs are given priority during the application process to reach as many underserved groups as possible. The next round of funding is scheduled to start in the summer.

Cartier Women’s Initiative Award

The Cartier Women’s Initiative Awards is an annual grant program that has been running since 2006. The program supports women-owned and operated businesses around the world by providing grants of up to US$100,000. The company is adding even more awards opportunities in 2023, including multiple regional awards and a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Award, which will be open to underserved entrepreneurs of all genders.

Tory Burch Fellows Program

The Tory Burch Foundation offers a grant program to support early-stage female-led startups. The program features a digital education program, peer-to-peer networking, and $5,000 grants for fellows. The next program officially starts in the summer of 2023. And the foundation will be accepting applications for the following year in the fall.

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