PCV Receives $350,000 From Wells Fargo to Support Diverse Small Businesses

Patrick DugganPCV News, Small Business Loans

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We’re thrilled to announce that Pacific Community Ventures will be able to offer capital paired with free advising to dozens of underserved small businesses in Alameda and Contra Costa counties thanks to a $350,000 Wells Fargo grant.

“Increasing access to capital is vital for the success of small businesses,” said Micky Randhawa, EVP and president of the Greater Bay region for Wells Fargo. “Through our Diverse Community Capital program, we work with community organizations such as Pacific Community Ventures to help small businesses start, stabilize, and grow.”

African American, Hispanic, Asian and female small business borrowers face even more difficult access-to-capital challenges and often lack the guidance to develop strong loan applications. PCV’s borrowers are assigned a pro bono small business financial advisor to help complete a strong loan application and have access to free-one-on-one technical assistance throughout the life of the loan, filling a major lending gap in small business support.

The funds are part of the $22.3 million in lending capital and grants Wells Fargo is providing to 15 community development organizations across the nation that provide loans, technical training and business development resources to diverse small businesses and underserved communities.

“Our small business lending program is filling the gap for entrepreneurs who can’t access capital from the traditional banking system,” said Mary Jo Cook, President and CEO of Pacific Community Ventures. “The deck is stacked against small business owners – yet these are the people who are creating good jobs in our communities and strengthening our local economies.  We have both a moral and an economic imperative to help them succeed. Funding from Wells Fargo will enable Pacific Community Ventures to provide diverse small business owners – women, people of color, and immigrants – access to the funding and expertise they need to grow and create good jobs.”

In the next three years, PCV will lend $5 million to small businesses in the East Bay. If you’re in Alameda or Contra Costa counties and you’ve been in business for at least one year, then PCV is eager to work with you. Visit pacificcommunityventures.org/loans to learn more and apply for funding.

See if you’re eligible for a PCV loan >

Support Will Total $75 Million

Wells Fargo plans to provide a total of $75 million in lending and grant capital over the next three years to support diverse-owned small businesses. Nonprofits interested in obtaining a grant or loan through the Diverse Community Capital program can apply from now until June 1 by going to www.wellsfargo.com/cdfi.

Available support from the program includes:

  • Grant Capital – Available to community development financial institutions (CDFIs) to build their financial, operational and human capacity to serve diverse small businesses.
  • Debt Capital – Available to CDFIs to build their lending capital to serve diverse small businesses.
  • Social Capital – Offers CDFIs support by focusing on activities such as mentorship, peer learning, marketing/outreach, underwriting and guidance on tailored products.

Our Fellow Grant and Lending Capital Recipients

“The Diverse Community Capital program is one of many ways Wells Fargo demonstrates its commitment to helping small businesses start, stabilize, and grow, and we’re excited that CDFIs are showing such interest in the program,” said Mike Rizer, Wells Fargo’s head of Community Relations. “CDFIs are vital to the success of many small businesses and the additional capital, technical assistance and other support these 15 CDFIs will be able to provide to the diverse-owned small businesses in their communities will help make those businesses, and ultimately, our communities, even stronger.”

The DCC program is a component of Wells Fargo’s four-point plan, which seeks to address challenges that diverse small business owners face when starting or growing businesses. The program is a collaboration between Wells Fargo and Opportunity Finance Network, a national network of CDFIs.

The round one DCC recipients are:

Each CDFI focuses on providing loans, technical training and business development resources that create and sustain jobs and wealth in traditionally underserved communities and populations.

(photo by Thomas Hawk)