President and COO of A&R Development Corp. brings organizational leadership, marketing, compliance and strategic expertise to the board
The U.S. Secretary of Commerce, Wilbur Ross, has announced that David J. Byrd will be the new National Director of the Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA). Mr. Byrd will be the eighteenth National Director of the agency.
Established by an Executive Order in 1969, MBDA is the only Federal agency solely dedicated to the growth and global competitiveness of minority-owned businesses in the United States.
“David’s vast experience in public service and as an entrepreneur are true assets to MBDA and the Department of Commerce,” said Secretary Ross. “In his new role, I fully expect him to continue to provide the type of leadership that will lay the foundation to usher in the next 50 years of opportunities and growth for minorities as well as the country as a whole.”
Mr. Byrd joined MBDA in October 2019 as the National Deputy Director responsible for overseeing the day-to-day departmental operations and establishing a streamlined information portal to track Agency milestones and program execution. As MBDA National Director, Mr. Byrd will oversee the development and implementation of Agency initiatives, policy agenda, and federal grant programs.
“I am honored to be selected by Secretary Ross to lead the Minority Business Development Agency”, said Mr. Byrd. “I am proud to take the helm as the National Director following several of my career mentors who were instrumental in shaping the mission and strategic direction of MBDA since its founding in 1969. I look forward to continuing the Agency’s work ensuring the resiliency and growth of America’s minority-owned firms today, tomorrow, and for future generations of minority entrepreneurs.”
Prior to accepting the fourth presidential appointment of his career at MBDA, Mr. Byrd served as the Deputy Assistant Secretary, Office of Policy Development, at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. His more than 28-year career in public service has included executive positions at the county, state, and federal levels. Mr. Byrd is also an experienced entrepreneur who owned and operated a consulting firm specializing in government relations, political consulting, executive and life skills coaching.
About the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA)
MBDA, www.mbda.gov, is the only Federal agency dedicated to the growth and global competitiveness of U.S. minority-owned businesses through the mobilization and advancement of public and private sector programs, policy, and research. Our services better equip minority-owned firms to create jobs, build scale and capacity, increase revenues and expand regionally, nationally and internationally. For nearly 50 years, MBDA has been a dedicated strategic partner to all U.S. minority-owned businesses, committed to providing greater access to capital, contracts, and markets.
Source: Minority Business Development Agency
“The U.S. Department of Labor understands how critically American workers and employers need this information as they return to work. Continuing to provide it remains a top priority for the Wage and Hour Division,” said Wage and Hour Division Administrator Cheryl Stanton. “With so many workers and employers committed to the greatest comeback the American workforce has ever seen, we are providing ongoing guidance to help them better understand their rights and responsibilities to protect workers and help ensure a level playing field for employers as our economy recovers.”
Today’s guidance is the latest addition to compliance assistance materials the WHD has published. These materials include a Fact Sheet for Employees, a Fact Sheet for Employers and a Questions and Answers resource about paid sick and expanded family and medical leave under the FFCRA. WHD has also produced two guidance posters, one for federal workers and one for all other employees, that fulfill notice requirements for employers obligated to inform employees of their FFCRA rights; Questions and Answers about posting requirements; and simple Quick Benefits Tips to determine how much paid leave the FFCRA allows workers to take.
FFCRA will help the U.S. combat and defeat the coronavirus by reimbursing, through tax credits, American businesses with fewer than 500 employees for the cost of providing employees with paid leave taken for specified reasons related to the coronavirus. The legislation enables employers to provide such paid leave, while at the same time ensuring that workers are not forced to choose between their paychecks and the public health measures needed to combat the virus.
WHD provides additional information on common issues employers and employees face when responding to the coronavirus and its effects on wages and hours worked under the Fair Labor Standards Act and job-protected leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act at https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pandemic
For more information about the laws enforced by the WHD, call 866-4US-WAGE, or visit www.dol.gov/agencies/whd
The mission of the Department of Labor is to foster, promote and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.
Old National Bank (NASDAQ: ONB) has announced a new partnership with Bankable and the Mid-States Minority Supplier Development Council (Mid-States MSDC) to promote and support Minority Business Enterprises (MBEs). The partnership will provide unique and flexible financing solutions and business development resources to Mid-States MSDC certified MBEs within the State of Indiana to ensure each entity’s future stability, growth and success.
Old National is providing $50,000 in funding to launch the partnership with an emphasis on broadening economic development and financial empowerment initiatives among diverse businesses and geographies.
“Old National is honored to collaborate with Bankable and Mid-States MSDC to offer financing and resources for MBE’s,” said Stephanie Roland, Community Outreach Director. “We understand that many businesses have been impacted by COVID-19, and we hope this additional support will help ensure stability and growth.”
“Mid-States is excited about this partnership. Providing small business loans for our council certified MBEs shows ONB and Bankable’s support of our minority businesses here in Indiana,” said Carolyn E. Mosby, President/CEO of Mid-States MSDC. “We look forward to growing our partnership in other areas as well.”
“Community is a core value and critical element of our corporate culture at Old National,” said Old National Chairman & CEO Jim Ryan. “We are honored to partner with Bankable and Mid-States to drive this commitment forward in meeting the needs of minority-owned businesses throughout the state of Indiana.
For more information about the MBE partnership, visit www.midstatesmsdc.org or call (317) 921-2678.
About Old National
Old National Bancorp (NASDAQ: ONB), the holding company of Old National Bank, is the largest bank holding company headquartered in Indiana. With $22.1 billion in assets, it ranks among the top 100 banking companies in the U.S. and has been recognized as a World’s Most Ethical Company by the Ethisphere Institute for nine consecutive years. Since its founding in Evansville in 1834, Old National Bank has focused on community banking by building long-term, highly valued partnerships and keeping our clients at the center of all we do. This is an approach to business that we call The ONB Way. Today, Old National’s footprint includes Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota. In addition to providing extensive services in retail and commercial banking, Old National offers comprehensive wealth management, investment and capital market services. For more information and financial data, please visit Investor Relations at www.oldnational.com.
CMS Energy (NYSE: CMS), and its principle subsidiary Consumers Energy Corporation, announced Angela Thompkins, currently executive director of Inclusion and Strategic Talent Sourcing, will be appointed vice president & Chief Diversity Officer, effective August 1, 2020.
Ms. Thompkins will be responsible for setting and monitoring the company’s diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) strategy, as well as partnering with leaders across the organization to improve results related to DEI. Additionally, she has responsibility for establishing and building relationships with communities and organizations that increase the availability of diverse talent within our long-term talent pipeline.
“Angela has a true passion for her work and is a champion for her co-workers and our company,” said Cathy Hendrian, senior vice president of People and Culture at CMS Energy and Consumers Energy. “Angela’s extensive background and wealth of experience helps her understand the unique perspectives we need to build a stronger, more inclusive organization, while ensuring every voice within the company is heard.”
Consumers Energy, Michigan’s largest energy provider, provides natural gas and/or electricity to 6.7 million of the state’s 10 million residents in all 68 Lower Peninsula counties.
Energy Secretary Dan R. Brouillette announced that the United States Department of Energy (DOE) will award 105 grants totaling $116 million to 92 small businesses in 31 states. Funded through the Department of Energy’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs, the selections are for Phase II research and development (R&D). Small businesses that demonstrated technical feasibility for innovations during their Phase I grants competed for funding for prototype or processes development during Phase II. In addition, prior Phase II awardees competed for second or third Phase II awards to continue prototype and process development. The median Phase II award is $1,100,000 for a period of two (2) years.
“As our country reopens, small businesses will play a critical role in the Nation’s economic recovery,” said Secretary Brouillette. “I am pleased the Department can aid in this recovery through the SBIR and STTR grant programs, which are helping spur growth by providing meaningful financial investment for innovative energy and science R&D at American small businesses.”
Selected grants from each of the research and development program offices that provided funding for the projects:
Small businesses play a major role in spurring innovation and creating jobs in the United States economy. The SBIR and STTR programs were created by Congress to leverage small businesses to advance innovation at federal agencies. Additional information on the Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer programs is available at the SBIR/STTR Programs Office: https://science.osti.gov/sbir.
Source: U.S. Department of Energy
Read Full Report: The Impact of Covid-19 on Small Business Owners: Evidence of Early-Stage Losses from the April 2020 Current Population Survey (By Robert W. Fairlie, NBER Working Paper No. 27309)
The number of active business owners in the United States of America is down by 2.2 million, or 15 percent, from February 2020, but up 7 percent since the low in April, according to a recent analysis report by the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER).
A working paper published by the National Bureau of Economic Research said that small business owners of ethnic groups in the United States continue to be disproportionately impacted by COVID-19. In breakdown, African-American business owners are hardest hit by COVID-19 with a drop of 26 percent in business activity from pre-COVID-19 levels.
Asian business owners dropped by 21 percent and Latinx business owners down 19 percent. Immigrant business owners experienced substantial losses of 25 percent, according to the paper.
The NBER paper argued that the negative impacts of COVID-19 on minority- and immigrant-owned businesses, if prolonged, could be problematic for broader racial inequality because of the importance of minority businesses for local job creation, economic advancement, and longer-term wealth inequality.
Meanwhile, mood of pessimism pervades among small business owners. The latest Small Business Pulse Survey carried out by the US Census Bureau shows that 37.7 percent of small business owners felt large negative effect by the COVID-19 pandemic, and 45 percent of them felt moderate negative effect.
As lifeblood of the US economy, small businesses accounted for 44 percent of all economic activity and created two-thirds of net new jobs before the pandemic, according to the Small Business Administration (SBA).
In an effort to support small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic, the US Congress in late March approved 349 billion dollars to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). The program, however, ran out of money within two weeks due to high demand. In late April, an additional 310 billion dollars went to the PPP as part of the relief package passed by the Congress.
The program is intended to help small businesses retain their employees during the pandemic, offers support for businesses with fewer than 500 employees and allows companies to have their loans forgiven if they spend the money on payroll, rent, mortgage interest and utilities.
However, as small businesses scramble to apply for loans under the PPP, a few not-so-small companies secured millions of dollars of aid, sparking public outrage and raising questions about the relief package.
The picture looks grim as well for the Economic Injury Disaster Loan Advance (EIDL) program, another measure offering grants of up to $10,000 to entrepreneurs. It has ended after reaching the 20 billion dollars funding limit allowed by Congress, the Small Business Administration announced.
Source: National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
Beyoncé has partnered with The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) to support small black-owned businesses affected by the pandemic through her BeyGood foundation, a global initiative founded in 2013 to inspire people to be kind, to be charitable and to #BeyGood to themselves, to others, to the community, and to our world.
“BeyGOOD announces The Black-Owned Small Business Impact Fund, assisting small businesses negatively impacted by recent events. The NAACP is proud to partner with BeyGOOD to help strengthen small businesses and to ensure economic empowerment for Black businesses.”
Special grants in the amount of $10,000 each will be offered to small black-owned businesses in five select U.S. cities, which include Atlanta, Houston, New York, Los Angeles and Minneapolis, with the specified goal of replacing damaged property. Submissions will be accepted through July 18, 2020, and selected applicants will be announced on the singer’s website Beyonce.com on July 31, 2020.
“Over the last couple of months, the pandemic and outpours for justice throughout the Black community and across the country has been felt in every imaginable area of our lives, including in how our local businesses continue to operate,” the NAACP said in a recent statement. “The challenges of Black business owners navigating in the climate cannot be understated, as the effects of uprisings across the nation have led to many businesses being placed in dire straits due to damages and other small business needs.”
For additional details on the Black-Owned Small Business Impact Fund administered by the NAACP and to apply for a grant, please visit https://naacp.org/black-owned-business-impact-fund.
The NAACP, founded in 1909 in response to the ongoing violence against Black people around the country, is the largest and most pre-eminent civil rights organization in the United States. We have over 2,200 units and branches across the country, along with well over two million activists. Our mission is to secure the political, educational, social, and economic equality of rights in order to eliminate race-based discrimination and ensure the health and well-being of all persons.’
Following an April 2020 industry-leading commitment to donate all gross processing fees from the federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), Wells Fargo (NYSE: WFC) has unveiled the details of an approximately $400 million effort to help small businesses impacted by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic keep their doors open, retain employees, and rebuild. Through Wells Fargo’s new Open for Business Fund, the company will engage nonprofit organizations to provide capital, technical support, and long-term resiliency programs to small businesses with an emphasis on those that are minority-owned businesses.
Through June 30, 2020, Wells Fargo funded loans under the PPP for over 179,000 customers, with an average loan amount of $56,000, totaling $10.1 billion. Of the loans made, 84% of those are for companies that have less than 10 employees; 60% were for amounts of $25,000 or less; and, 90% of these applicants had $2 million or less in annual revenue. Given the federal government’s extension of the PPP, Wells Fargo will reopen its PPP loan application process to eligible customers as soon as possible through a link in Business Online Banking ® or CEO®.
“By donating approximately $400 million in processing fees to assist small businesses in need, Wells Fargo’s Open for Business Fund creates opportunities for near-term access to capital and addresses the road ahead to meaningful economic recovery, especially for Black and African American entrepreneurs and other minority-owned businesses,” said Wells Fargo CEO Charlie Scharf. “Wells Fargo is committed to helping small businesses impacted by COVID-19 stay open and get back to growth.”
According to data from Wells Fargo’s June Gallup/Small Business Index, more than half of small business owners surveyed expect either stagnant or decreasing revenues in the coming 12 months.
Accelerating Small Business Recovery for Communities in Need
The Open for Business Fund’s initial grants will allocate $28 million to Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), also known as nonprofit community lenders, aimed at empowering Black and African American-owned small businesses, which are closing at nearly twice the rate of the industry, according to the National Bureau of Economic Research. Among the first grantees:
“Black businesses have faced the largest shutdown of any diverse group in the country,” said Ron Busby, Sr., CEO of U.S. Black Chambers, Inc. “We lost 41%, or 450,000 Black-owned small businesses, in this pandemic so far and all of those businesses provided jobs so we need to accelerate an economic agenda that helps them recover. The funding that Wells Fargo is putting back into Black businesses and other minority-owned small businesses across the country is truly going to be appreciated and will give the kick start entrepreneurs need to continue and grow.”
Beginning today, the Open for Business Fund is accepting applications from CDFIs and special purpose funds formed by CDFIs serving racially and ethnically diverse small businesses for its first grant cycle, open now through August 7. Additional grant cycles focused on technical assistance and recovery and resiliency will open later this year. Nonprofits can learn more at www.wellsfargo.com/about/corporate-responsibility/community-giving.
Small business sentiment
The Small Business Index, which provides a quarterly pulse check of sentiment from small business owners on their economic situations and the wider economic landscape, highlighted higher optimism on their financial outlook in June than in April. However, this was still 19% lower than in January, prior to the outbreak of COVID-19. In specifically oversampling African American, Hispanic, Asian, and women business owners, June’s survey also observed that 52% of these owners felt the U.S. economy was in a recession or depression, while 26% said they did not feel very prepared or at all prepared for the economic downturn from the pandemic.
“June’s survey saw business owner optimism increasing as reopenings have been getting underway, but the overall data shows that for many, there’s still a long road to recovery,” said Mark Vitner, chief economist at Wells Fargo. “The pandemic’s effects are also still being sorted out as communities across the country are in different stages of recovery, so optimism around indicators like revenues and number of jobs will continue to shift as those stages progress.”
Contributing to the Small Business Ecosystem
Building a thriving small business sector has a lasting impact on communities and on job creation. Since 2015, the $175 million Wells Fargo Diverse Community Capital program has enabled more than 90 CDFIs to finance $1.6 billion in loans and offer 1.8 million hours of training to diverse small business owners, which have helped them sustain 195,000 jobs.
As part of the Diverse Community Capital program, the Wells Fargo Foundation and the National Association of Latino Community Asset Builders started the nation’s largest loan fund for Latino-owned small businesses with a $10 million grant.
Separately, in March, Wells Fargo announced it aims to invest up to $50 million in Minority Depository Institutions (MDIs) as part of its commitment to support economic growth in African American communities where MDIs, often community-based banks, provide mortgage loans, small business lending, and other banking services.
SmalI Business Index Methodology
Results for Wells Fargo/Gallup Small Business Index survey are based on web interviews with 1,478 small business owners, conducted during the period of May 29-June 5, 2020. This survey also included an oversample of diverse segments — ensuring a minimum of 300 interviews each among African American, Asian, and Hispanic small business owners. Beginning in second quarter 2019, the interview process formally transitioned from outbound phone data collection to a national small business web opt-in panel provider.
Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is a diversified, community-based financial services company with $1.98 trillion in assets. Wells Fargo’s vision is to satisfy our customers’ financial needs and help them succeed financially. Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo provides banking, investment, and mortgage products and services, as well as consumer and commercial finance, through 7,400 locations, more than 13,000 ATMs, the internet (wellsfargo.com), and mobile banking, and has offices in 31 countries and territories to support customers who conduct business in the global economy. With approximately 263,000 team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in the United States. Wells Fargo & Company was ranked No. 30 on Fortune’s 2020 rankings of America’s largest corporations. News, insights, and perspectives from Wells Fargo are also available at Wells Fargo Stories.
Source: Wells Fargo (NYSE: WFC)
The United States Small Business Administration, in consultation with the United States Department of the Treasury, announced July 6, 2020, it was releasing detailed loan-level data regarding the loans made under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). This disclosure covers each of the 4.9 million PPP loans that have been made.
“The PPP is providing much-needed relief to millions of American small businesses, supporting more than 51 million jobs and over 80 percent of all small business employees, who are the drivers of economic growth in our country,” said Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin. “We are particularly pleased that 27% of the program’s reach in low and moderate income communities which is in proportion to percentage of population in these areas. The average loan size is approximately $100,000, demonstrating that the program is serving the smallest of businesses,” he continued. “Today’s release of loan data strikes the appropriate balance of providing the American people with transparency, while protecting sensitive payroll and personal income information of small businesses, sole proprietors, and independent contractors.”
“The PPP is an indisputable success for small businesses, especially to the communities in which these employers serve as the main job creators,” said Administrator Jovita Carranza. “In three months, this Administration was able to act quickly to get funding into the hands of those who faced enormous obstacles as a result of the pandemic. Today’s data shows that small businesses of all types and across all industries benefited from this unprecedented program. The jobs numbers released last week reinforced that PPP is working by keeping employees on payroll and sustaining millions of small businesses through this time.”
Today’s release includes loan-level data, including business names, addresses, NAICS codes, zip codes, business type, demographic data, non-profit information, name of lender, jobs supported, and loan amount ranges as follows:
These categories account for nearly 75 percent of the loan dollars approved. For all loans below $150,000, SBA is releasing all of the above information except for business names and addresses.
The data release also includes overall statistics regarding dollars lent per state, loan amounts, top lenders, and distribution by industry. The loans have reached diverse communities proportionally, across all income levels and demographics.
In addition, the data provides information regarding the sizes of participating lenders and participation by community development financial institutions, minority depository institutions, Farm Credit System institutions, fintechs and other nonbanks, and other types of lenders. It further contains data showing the reach of the program in underserved communities, rural communities, historically underutilized business zones (HUBZones), and participation by religious, grantmaking, civil, professional, and other similar organizations.
Source: Treasury Department