Editor’s Note: As of Friday, August 28, the deadline for applications has been extended to Friday, September 11. According to the fund website, “This is will be the final extension, and thus represents the final closing date for the Fund under its current configuration. Anyone who completes an inquiry by 9/11 will have ample time to collaborate and submit a full application.”
Over $6.5 million remains in the Columbus COVID-19 Small Business Response and Recovery Fund. Applications for the loan and grant program close this week on Saturday, August 29 at 5 p.m.
The fund includes three loan and grant programs:
- Recovery Grants
- Return Safely Grants for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
- Pivot Loans
Launched on May 28, Round 1 of the program was initially targeted to small businesses with fewer than 25 employees in low-to-moderate income neighborhoods. For Round 2, which launched in early August, eligibility was expanded to businesses within the City and County limits with fewer than 25 employees, though the programs still prioritize underserved businesses with five employees or fewer and with women or minority ownership.
Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis through August 29 or until funds run out. Business owners must request an application and will be will be matched with a regional entrepreneur support organization or technical assistance provider to complete the process.
The city is calling Round 1 of funding a success, sharing more about how funds have been allocated thus far. To date, over $3.6 million in grant awards have gone to 400 plus small businesses. Of those businesses 71% are minority-owned, 49% are women-owned, with the highest minority representation being Black-owned – 66%. 80% of approved grants are going to businesses with five or fewer employees.
Business owners can find additional details on the loan and grant programs and apply here.