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SIA Scotch Whiskey, The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund,

SIA Scotch Whisky partners with Hello Alice to launch groundbreaking new entrepreneurship fund

Did you know that in the United States, multicultural entrepreneurs have reportedly received only a 2% share of venture capital annually over the last decade? SIA Scotch Whisky, an award-winning spirits brand founded by a first generation Hispanic entrepreneur, is looking to help bridge this gap by partnering with Hello Alice and celebrated activist, actor and producer Wilmer Valderrama to launch The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund by SIA Scotch. Spearheaded by SIA’s founder Carin Luna-Ostaseski and inspired by her journey of building the brand from the ground up, this initiative aims to challenge conventions and inspire others to achieve the unexpected.

SIA Scotch Whiskey, The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund,

Carin Luna-Ostaseski and group (PRNewsfoto/SIA Scotch Whisky)

This new grant program will deploy a quarter of a million dollars to multicultural small business owners in need of support, especially after the additional challenges they face because of COVID-19. It will also offer recipients access to mentorship opportunities with SIA’s founder, who is one of the first Hispanic people in history to create a Scotch Whisky, and who faced many challenges during her own entrepreneurship journey. 

SIA Scotch Whiskey, The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund,

Carin Luna-Ostaseski, Founder of SIA Scotch Whisky (PRNewsfoto/SIA Scotch Whisky)

“SIA Scotch Whisky was born out of passion, determination and perseverance – the same characteristics that drive many other entrepreneurs. As a first generation Cuban American, I experienced so many uphill battles, from securing funding to dealing with regulations and securing investors,” said Carin Luna-Ostaseski. “But, after finally getting crowdfunded on Kickstarter and seeing those first bottles on shelves, I knew my purpose was to help inspire other underrepresented entrepreneurs achieve their dreams too. I am so proud of The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund and its mission to embrace the cultural diversity that helps define our country.”

The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund by SIA Scotch launches in partnership with Hello Alice, a free online platform that guides business owners through the growth of their company and matches individuals with the resources to make their dreams a reality.

“Now, more than ever, it’s important to recognize the impact that multicultural small businesses have on their communities,” said Elizabeth Gore, President & Cofounder, Hello Alice. “In the last 10 years, multicultural entrepreneurs have represented over 50% of new businesses started and created 4.7 million new jobs, yet they are largely excluded in funding. We are thrilled to be continuing our support for this community in partnership with SIA Scotch Whisky.”

You might be interested: Say ‘Hello Alice’ to the platform that is opening doors for small businesses and new entrepreneurs

SIA Scotch Whiskey, The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund,

Wilmer Valderrama joins SIA Scotch Whisky (PRNewsfoto/SIA Scotch Whisky)

Additionally, activist, actor and producer Wilmer Valderrama joins The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund as partner, continuing his ongoing tireless mission to push for diversity and inclusion. “Supporting the progress and perseverance of multicultural entrepreneurs who are trying to achieve their dreams and disrupt the status quo is incredibly important to me. I’m so honored to partner with SIA Scotch Whisky on The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund and I believe that their work will make a big impact, especially during these difficult times,” said Wilmer Valderrama

The Entrepreneurial Spirit Fund by SIA Scotch will award $10,000 grants to 25 qualifying entrepreneurs who self-identify as people of color, for a total of $250,000. To apply, visit siascotchfund.helloalice.com. To be eligible, the business owner must be a citizen or legal permanent resident of the United States, 25 years or older, and must operate in at least one of the following states where SIA is sold: California, Florida, Illinois, Nevada, New York and/or Texas. For complete eligibility criteria and important restrictions, visit the application site. Applications are open now through August 10, 2021, grant recipients will be announced by September 14, 2021 and funding will be distributed by October 8, 2021.

$10,000 Grant Opportunity for Black and Minority-Owned Businesses

In response to the economic challenges brought on by COVID-19 and civil unrest, Fiserv is giving back to help small businesses get Back2Business with a program focused on helping to jump-start Black- and minority-owned small businesses in hard-hit communities. 

Fiserv and AEO launch partnership to get Main Street #Back2Business

As a global leader in payments and fintech, Fiserv has proudly served millions of small businesses with technology and payment solutions for more than 35 years and they believe that companies can and should be a platform for good. 

To help elevate economic inclusion and create transformative change, Fiserv has partnered with AEO, who continues to join forces with market partners that believe in collaborating to drive wealth creation in underserved communities through entrepreneurship. 

Through their partnership, they have launched the Back2Business program which will award grants in the amount of $10,000 to Black- and minority-owned businesses that have been impacted by COVID-19 and social unrest. The grant, which will be offered to select cities, is now open for New York and surrounding areas, including all of New Jersey.

 

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The Back2Business Grant is a part of a larger Fiserv initiative to equip minority-owned small businesses with vital education, coaching, and capital to truly fuel growth of our communities, creating sustainable business and shared value for all. In addition to the grant, the program will include opportunities for mentorship and access to technology solutions that enable revenue generation.

Grant applications are now open for eligible small businesses in New York and New Jersey. Applications are due by February 26th, 2021, but the sooner you apply, the better. 

To be eligible, applicants must: 

  • Be a Black-or minority-owned small business an an adult (18+) 
  • Must have revenue of less that $1M annually 
  • Be founded prior to June 1, 2019
  • Have less than 10 employees 

Applicants can find more information and apply for the grant at https://aeoworks.org/fiserv/

AEO’s Mission: To create economic opportunities for underserved entrepreneurs throughout the United States and engineer transformational change through Research, Incubation, Convening & Advocacy to foster a robust and inclusive marketplace. AEO’s vision is for every individual in the U.S. to have access to resources and services for creating wealth, assets, and healthy communities through business ownership.

Women Center for Entrepreneurship cover

Women business startups apply for seed grant program

Women'sCenter Enrepreneurship

The Women’s Center for Entrepreneurship Corp. is starting its competitive grant program targeting new women business owners in the State of New Jersey. The grant program, funded by The New Jersey State Department, Office of Faith-Based Initiatives, is geared to small or microbusiness owners who are in the planning stage or have only been operating their business for less than six months.

“The main goal of this project is to provide tools for women to become self-sufficient by owning and successfully operating their own business, thereby investing financially, intellectually and emotionally in their community,” Center Director Penni Nafus said. “It is a competitive program for small grants but it can really make a difference for microbusinesses that can put the money towards acquiring new technologies, for renovations, supplies or inventory.”

Five grants will be offered between $1500 and $7500, but the money cannot be used for general operating expenses. Participants must attend a series of free classes and seminars (totaling approximately 32 hours) that will be presented throughout the state at different locations, and starting in March, they will also be offered online.

Once participants comply with the study hours, they will write and submit a business plan, a grant application, a résumé, and a grant budget. A panel of judges will determine up to five winners, based on the viability of the plan and the grant budget.

According to information from the Department of State, approximately 50 percent of businesses opening in New Jersey are women-owned and more importantly, the large majority belongs to Hispanic women. “We used to see applicants for this program among the very young, recent college grads, and also the 55 and older women. However, these numbers are changing at the lower end due to large student loan’ debt, which prevent them to invest in opening a startup,” Penni said.

Awards will be in the form of cash grants, with the top grant being awarded for $7500. The WCEC is partially funded by the U. S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Women’s Business Ownership and the State of New Jersey. Other business owners are encouraged to attend the seminars even if they are not pursuing the competitive grant program. For registration and information, please visit the Center’s website at www.wcecnj.org or contact the Women’s Center for Entrepreneurship at 973-507-9700

 

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