NEW YORK, Sept. 29, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Hello Alice, a free platform that guides business owners through the growth of their company, is reigniting the Business for All initiative. In partnership with Verizon, #BusinessForAll is a nationwide movement led by entrepreneurs, celebrities, business support organizations, and corporate executives that provides the opportunity for mentorship and funding to small business owners nationwide. Hello Alice pivoted efforts in March to provide a dedicated resource center and over $2 million in emergency grants to support small businesses affected by COVID-19. Now Hello Alice and Verizon will provide new money for Business for All grants between $10,000 and $50,000, along with mentorship opportunities, resources and more through the Hello Alice platform. Grants will be open to all owners with a special focus on the New Majority -- women, people of color, LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs, military affiliated business owners, and entrepreneurs with disabilities.
To raise awareness about the impact small businesses have on their communities, Hello Alice will lead a social media small business takeover on September 29th, with over 10 mentors lending their highly influential social media channels and millions of followers to small businesses owners to share their stories. Additionally, select mentors will offer exclusive virtual mentorship sessions for those who apply and are selected through Hello Alice's community. Participating mentors include:
- Kristen Bell, Actress, Author, Mom, and Founder of Hello Bello;
- Jean Case, Author and CEO of The Case Foundation;
- Tami Erwin, EVP & Group CEO of Verizon Business;
- Guy Fieri, Restaurateur;
- Elizabeth Gore, Co-Founder & President of Hello Alice;
- Whitney Wolfe Herd, Founder & CEO of Bumble;
- Jeff Hoffman, Chairman of Global Entrepreneur Network;
- Lauren Maillian, CEO of Digital Undivided;
- David Meltzer, Co-Founder of Sports 1 Marketing;
- Rebecca Minkoff, Co-Founder of Rebecca Minkoff;
- Phyllis Newhouse, Founder & CEO of Xtreme Solutions, Inc. and Founder of ShoulderUp;
- Gwyneth Paltrow, CEO & Founder of goop;
- Lisa Price, Founder of Carol's Daughter;
- Rakia Reynolds, Founder & Executive Officer of Skai Blue Media;
- Carolyn Rodz, Co-Founder & CEO of Hello Alice;
- Zaw Thet, Co-Founder & CEO of Exer; and
- Wende Zomnir, Founding Partner of Urban Decay Cosmetics.
Within the last 10 years, New Majority entrepreneurs have represented over 50% of new businesses started, creating 4.7 million new jobs, yet these owners are largely excluded in funding, receiving only a 2% share of venture capital each year. Only 5.5% of women-owned businesses in the U.S. access capital from banks or other financial institutions compared to 11.4% of male-owned companies.
"We 100% need to ensure that main street America survives," said Elizabeth Gore, Co-Founder & President of Hello Alice. "By ensuring #BusinessForAll, our entire country benefits. At Hello Alice, we will lift the voices and needs of business owners through this critical year in every way possible."
All grant applicants are put forward into a peer-to-peer mentor community and will have full access to resources available on HelloAlice.com, from small business how-to guides and advice to guided live video mentorship and digital support communities. Hello Alice has established a grants council to guide the nomination and vetting process with entrepreneur organizations, such as Verizon, Aspen Institute, DivInc, NAWBO, Bunker Labs for Veterans, digitalundivided, Black and Brown Founders, the Global Entrepreneur Network, the USHCC, the NGLCC, Kashia Band of Pomo Indians, and the Viscardi Network. Business for All will also encourage entrepreneurs to nominate their own companies.
With over 93% of small business owners voting in an election year, Business for All will also engage small business owners and policymakers on priority issues critical to small business growth ahead of the 2020 presidential election. According to Verizon's "Small Business Recovery Survey," 81% of small business owners believe the outcome of the 2020 presidential election will affect small businesses in the U.S. overall, regardless of owner's party affiliation. Hello Alice will host nonpartisan Business for All listening sessions with small business owners from across the country. Additionally, Hello Alice and NAACP have created Vote Small Biz Center to ensure small businesses have the ability to vote on election day.
ABOUT HELLO ALICE
Hello Alice is a free, multichannel platform that helps businesses launch and grow. With a community of more than 220,000 business owners in all 50 states and across the globe, Hello Alice is building the largest network of owners in the country while tracking data and trends to increase the success rate for entrepreneurs. Our partners include enterprise business services, government agencies, and institutions looking to serve small- and medium-business owners to ensure increased revenues and promote scale. Co-headquartered in Houston and San Francisco, and founded by Carolyn Rodz and Elizabeth Gore, we believe in business for all by providing access to all owners including women, people of color, veterans, and everyone with an entrepreneurial spirit. To learn more, visit www.helloalice.com, as well as Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Facebook.
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, Nasdaq: VZ) was formed on June 30, 2000 and is celebrating its 20th year as one of the world's leading providers of technology, communications, information and entertainment products and services. Headquartered in New York City and with a presence around the world, Verizon generated revenues of $131.9 billion in 2019. The company offers data, video and voice services and solutions on its award-winning networks and platforms, delivering on customers' demand for mobility, reliable network connectivity, security and control.
SOURCE Hello Alice