Developing a business idea takes more than innovation and faith. Funding is essential for a company to transition from a dream to reality. While loans and lines of credit are sought-after ways of funding a business, there are other options. Business grants, accelerators and pitch competitions all provide more than financial assistance. These opportunities also include mentorship, access to a larger network of entrepreneurs and training.
In this week’s listing of grants and funding sources, we are featuring opportunities that will meet the needs of micro entrepreneurs to startups to established small businesses.
The Black Founders Fund Africa
Startups operating in 13 African countries, including Nigeria, Ghana, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda and Cameroon, are eligible to receive funding to support their growth and development. Recipients will receive cash awards between $50,000 and $100,000 and up to $200,000 per startup in Google Cloud credits. In addition, entrepreneurial training and mentorship opportunities are available. More information and a listing of eligible countries can be found here. Apply by May 31.
Global Citizen Collective Entrepreneur Grant
The Global Citizen Collective Entrepreneur Grant is for business owners whose mission is based on global citizenship and a goal to offer products and services that “create a more equal, fair and sustainable planet,” according to the organization’s Facebook page. Companies operating for two years or less are eligible for a $1,000 grant. Applicants must submit a video submission, copy of business license and letter of recommendation. More information is available here. Apply by June 1.
Every month, minority women business owners can apply for a HerRise Micro-Grant. The $500 grant can be used to purchase equipment, update marketing materials, build an online presence and much more. Nonprofit organizations, direct sales, authorized resellers, independent consultants and franchise owners are not eligible. Applicants must be a HerSuiteSpot member.
More information can be found here.
Are you an entrepreneur ready to grow your startup? The Watson Accelerator provides participants with access to venture capitalists, enterprise executives, entrepreneurial training, mentorship and an international network of other business owners. Participants will spend three weeks in Boulder, Colorado, and the remaining 14 weeks will be virtual. Entrepreneurs can receive funding up to $17,500. Find more information here. Apply by June 1.
TVFCU Idea Leap Grant
The Tennessee Valley Federal Credit Union is offering a small business grant to entrepreneurs operating within the Tennessee Valley. Businesses must be in operation for at least one year with necessary business documentation. Grant awards include a grand prize of $50,000; first place, $20,000; and three runners-up, $10,000. More information can be found here. Apply by June 3.