‘Adopt-A-Business’ program aims to help women of color entrepreneurs access financial capital
Published December 6, 2018 | Manny Faces
The Institute for Entrepreneurial Leadership, a Newark-based nonprofit that supports economic development through entrepreneurship, has announced the launch of its Adopt-A-Business initiative, aimed at tackling the challenges that women of color entrepreneurs face in accessing financial capital.
The organization is raising $1 million worth of expertise and resources, and plans to support up to 10 women of color entrepreneurs. The program will connect corporate professionals and entrepreneurs with high growth businesses, to help inform and guide them, focusing on attaining the financial capital necessary to help scale their businesses.
“Access to capital is a legacy challenge with roots deep in our American history,” explains
Jill Johnson, IFEL Co-Founder and CEO. “While there have been innovative capital solutions in recent years, capital constraint remains a defining problem for the majority of women of color entrepreneurs. It’s time we take a new approach to addressing this problem.”
Statistics show that while women of color have been starting businesses at exponential rates in recent years, there is still disparity. They tend to have less access to financial capital, produce less revenue and fewer jobs, while owners receive less overall income. The organization states that greater access to startup and growth capital is necessary to level this playing field.
The IFEL Adopt-A-Business program is part of Women of Color Connecting, a larger initiative to assist women of color entrepreneurs in business development. Women of Color Connecting will convene at a summit being held on January 31 and February 1 of 2019 at the Newark Liberty international Airport Marriott Hotel.
Up to 10 entrepreneurs will be selected to participate in the Adopt-A-Business program, sharing the resources and expertise of the professionals and service providers who will be volunteering their time and knowledge. IFEL states that it will be preference will be given to businesses have been in existence for at least five years, with revenues that exceed $100,000.
The deadline to apply for the program is January 3, 2019.
“We are ready to address the access to capital challenge looking through a different lens.
The IFEL community of supporters has an extraordinary network of talent and resources
that if properly channeled can help propel historically under-resourced entrepreneurs to
new heights,” says Johnson. “This is a movement to change the way we think about building the capacity of women of color entrepreneurs to grow and scale given limited access to capital.”
Entrepreneurs who are interested in applying, as well as companies that would like to be involved as a partner in the program, can find details at www.woccon.com.