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Verizon awards 25 Hispanic small businesses with $10,000 in grants

The resources will be used to promote digital acceleration.

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In celebration of National Small Business Week and Verizon Small Business Days, business recipients in cities, including Philadelphia, Boston, Chicago, Houston and San Diego, were recently announced.

Through Verizon Small Business Digital Ready, a free online resource focused on helping small businesses achieve success in today’s digital economy, and in partnership with Next Street and Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), these grants will allow businesses to invest in upgrading their technology, advancing their marketing, or supporting operational costs such as employee wages, rent, and more,highlights Verizon.

Support for Small Businesses

Seeking to highlight the priorities, opportunities, successes and challenges facing Hispanic small businesses, Verizon Business released the findings of its latest study, the Verizon Business Hispanic Small Business Report, conducted by Morning Consult.

Through a survey of 500 Hispanic small business owners across the country, the research highlights the adoption of technology, the desire for advice and assistance, and the economic outlook of Hispanic small business owners.

In addition, the study looked at differences between gender, industry, and companies that do business primarily in English versus those that do a mix of English and Spanish.

Aparna Khurjekar, chief revenue officer of Business Markets and SaaS at Verizon Business, stated:

Hispanic small business owners are continuously reinventing themselves through technology and the data from our study proves this.

Verizon Small Business Days

Verizon Small Business Days begin tomorrow, April 27, and it will run through May 3, a time for small businesses to speak with a Verizon Business specialist and take advantage of great offers and solutions to boost their businesses.

Between the direct partnership with our customer-facing teams of digital experts in their community, the grants for these deserving businesses, and the access to information and mentorship we provide online through our Digital Ready program, we are thrilled to support their continued growth,” added Khurjekar.

Comprehensive Verizon Support

As one of the world's leading providers of communications technology and services, Verizon offers small business owners valuable digital tools to grow their businesses. Among the most important, the following stand out:

1.  Technology Adoption

  • Nearly three out of four (74%) Hispanic small businesses have leveraged digital tools and technologies to make money over the past three years
  • More than one-third (41%) of respondents have implemented new technology to solve for worker shortage
  • Over the past year, nearly half (47%) have transitioned to a digital first operation
  • Nearly two-thirds (65%) are concerned about ensuring the security of online and digital transactions
  • Hispanic small businesses who conducted business through a combination of Spanish and English are leveraging digital tools to change the customer experience and make money to a greater extent (77%) versus those who conduct business primarily in English (69%)

2.  Advice and Assistance

  • In the past year, only 32% have applied for a private loan or grant, but 78% reported wanting assistance in the form of finding private loan options and how to apply
  • Nearly three out of four (71%) say they need external support for implementation of new systems or technology to ensure security
  • More than three out of four (78%) would find it helpful to speak with IT experts to advice on remote work infrastructure and using newer technologies, such as 5G
  • Two out of three (67%) would find it necessary to have external support in helping their business provide new technology to employees to retain and attract new talent

3.  Community and Culture

  • Almost two-thirds of Hispanic small business owners (64%) say they have family members working for their business in a paid capacity, and about half (53%) say they have family members volunteering their unpaid time to help with the business
  • Half (48%) say that their business has created new job opportunities
  • More than 62% are trying to develop strategies to drive customers back to face-to-face interactions

4.  Business Outlook

  • Nearly half (48%) have begun preparing for a possible recession
  • Nearly two in three (64%) Hispanic small business owners worry about needing to tap into their personal savings to finance their business
  • However two out of three (65%) say their business is better now than it was this time last year and 74% believe their business will be better a year from now than it is today

More Help

Beyond the $250,000 in grants awarded to Hispanic-owned small businesses, Verizon offers another round of grants available to small business owners of all backgrounds through Verizon Small Business Digital Ready.

Through May 12, 2023, small businesses can unlock an application for the new round of grant funding by signing up for Verizon Small Business Digital Ready and completing at least two of the following, in any combination: courses, live training, or community events.

Verizon also recently launched new Spanish-language course offerings, expert training, community events and one-on-one tutoring available in Small Business Digital Ready.

This Verizon initiative, which is part of its 'Citizen Verizon' responsible business plan, seeks to support 1 million small businesses by 2030 with the resources to thrive in the digital economy.

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