Category Archives: Financial Wealth

Business Loans for Minorities

Being Black History Month, it’s important for the African-American community not just to look back at the strides and sacrifices those before them have made, but also to keep their eyes on the future. A major part of ensuring a better future for Black people is establishing stronger footholds in the business world, where many minorities work hard to succeed, but face entrenched obstacles in areas like obtaining capital or other business essentials. As The Network Journal reports, it is fitting that a special collaboration of organizations and institutions have launched a small business lending program for minority business owners.

This collaboration includes the National Urban League’s Urban Empowerment Fund (NUL-UEF), Morgan Stanley, National Development Council (NDC) Urban League of Greater Cleveland (ULGC), and Cuyahoga County, who have come together to offer the Capital Access Fund of Greater Cleveland (CAF). CAF will be a three-year program that will provide business owners with access to capital offering 50 loans that reach a total of $8 million. Pre- and post-loan counseling to ensure the success of those small business borrowers will also be a part of the program. The goal is to create a minimum of 300 jobs within these 3 years, and 8 loans totaling $1.4 million helping to create or maintain 70 local jobs have already been completed.

CAF will have two sources of capital, the Community Impact Loan Fund, a new NDC product established in partnership with $2 million in start-up capital from Morgan Stanley to support minority small business owners, and the Grow Cuyahoga Fund, supported with $2.5 million from Cuyahoga County.

Marc H. Morial, President and CEO of the National Urban League, says “the level of interest we already have confirms what we already knew – there is a gap in the access to capital for minority businesses and we should not gloss over that. Our partnership with Morgan Stanley, the expertise of NDC, the commitment of Cuyahoga County, and the strong leadership of the Urban League of Greater Cleveland already have made this a success.”

Armond Budish, County Executive, adds that “small business creation and retention is a priority for my administration… We’re all about jobs, good jobs, throughout the county. With the Grow Cuyahoga Fund, Cuyahoga County’s partnership in the CAF program allows us to continue to lead the way as a place to grow and thrive for African American and other minority businesses which will help ensure our county remains a vibrant, healthy and welcoming place.” Other local funders include Cleveland Foundation, City of Cleveland, Burton D. Morgan Foundation, PNC Bank, and Fifth Third Bank.


Black Television News Channel

Now this is what we need and what I’ve been hoping for for a long time. Check out their story and get involved, support or whatever we have to do to make this a momentus and much watched channel for all minorities!


Black Television News Channel will be the nation’s only provider of 24/7 cable news programming dedicated to covering the unique perspective of African American communities. BTNC will provide access to information and educational programming to meet the specific needs of this growing and dynamic community that is a major consumer of subscription television services. BTNC will provide a new voice that represents African Americans in mainstream media and fosters political, economic, and social discourse. BTNC’s programming will shed light on the unique challenges facing urban communities and help close the “image gap” that exists today between the negative black stereotypes perpetuated by mainstream media news and our enterprising African American communities. For more details, visit


How to Get Small Business Credit

As a smaller business, getting access to small business credit can either be really easy or really hard; There is no real middle ground. It really all depends on how old and profitable your company is. The older your company and the more money you make, the easier it is to get it. The younger your company and the less money you make, the harder it is to get it.

Here are a few ways to try:

1) Maintain Your Personal Credit
While there are ways around this, the average person can only get access to business credit if he/she has good personal credit. Conducting a credit check on your personal financials is usually the only means that a banker has to determine whether or not you are too risky for them. If your personal credit sucks, fix it. It will be well worth your time – however long it takes!
2) Shop For Banks
Always remember that banks need you just as much as you need them. Giving you access to credit creates revenue for them. Therefore, if one bank turns you down – try another. In your community, there are probably at least 25 different banks. All of them have a different application process, all have them have different criteria, but at the end of the day – they all want to do business with you. is a great tool to find banks in your area.
3) Search Online
In addition to the banks in your local community, there are tons more on the web. These virtual banks may have higher rates, but they too are very desperate for your business. Many offer business loans and business credit cards. Conduct extensive research using Google, Yahoo, and business directories such as
4) Find a Broker
A broker is a person or company that can help you find the best bank available. They can save you a lot of time and energy, and may even bring opportunities to your attention that you would’ve never found. Be careful about shady brokers who are so desperate for your business that they will connect you with loan sharks.
5) Attend Financial Seminars
If you’re aware of a financial seminar or workshop in your area, make every effort to attend. What better way to be educated about the best financial options for your company, then to be advised by a local expert? Usually these events are free to attend, and the person hosting it is usually very knowledgeable about the best banks and financial institutions to do business with. As always, double-check any references by doing your own research.
6) Attend Business Conferences
Every year, hundreds of business organizations and publications host their own annual conferences. Most have expos where companies such as banks can set up booths to recruit new clients. This is a great opportunity for you to inquire about their services, collect literature, and learn exactly what you need to do to apply and be approved.
7) Read Business Magazines
Publications such as Forbes, Inc, Fast Company, Black Enterprise, Hispanic Business, and even Business Week, report regularly on the business credit and financing industries. They often provide unique tips and techniques that can be used. Not only can you benefit from the content from the articles within, but you can also benefit from the advertisements (both display and classified) that promote various opportunities.
8) Shop For Business Credit Cards
In addition to shopping for banks, you can also shop for credit cards from banks that you don’t even belong to. If your own bank won’t give you a card, that doesn’t necessarily mean that others will also deny you. There are many to choose from, with various interest rates and rewards programs that can benefit your business.

Top Business Cards: