The philanthropic investment from JPMorgan Chase—a leading global financial services firm—will help local Community Development Financial Institutions like RVCDF provide liquidity and technical support services to vulnerable small businesses, including those that are minority-owned. Many of these businesses are either unlikely to qualify for a U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) loan, or need a short-term bridge until SBA funds are available.
With more than 1,000 such businesses in southeast Seattle serving residents from all over the Puget Sound and beyond, and research indicating that 50 percent of small businesses have less than 15 cash buffer days, the small business economy could be devastated by the COVID-19 crisis.
“We are all in this together,” said Bob Luciano, RVCDF’s director of community development. “Partnerships such as this one with JPMorgan Chase helps us respond quickly to provide our small, local and family-owned businesses with the emergency funds they need to survive during this crisis.”
Grant funds are intended to support existing businesses impacted by the COVID-19 crisis to address basic operational needs, including:
- Rent and utilities
- Supplies and inventory
- Working capital
- Business planning and consulting
The RVCDF staff is working remotely during the statewide stay-at-home order in its efforts to preserve and strengthen cultural diversity, long-term livability, and economic opportunity throughout southeast Seattle. Grant applications are expected to be available at the end of April.