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First Black Investments in Greensboro Equity Fund grant awarded

Gerry Broome
AP Photo
In this Tuesday, July 2, 2019, photo, volunteers from Baptists On Mission and Home Builders Institute assisting with ongoing repairs due to damage caused by Hurricane Florence, in Spring Lake, N.C. North Carolina.

Piedmont Business Capital has received the first grant by the Black Investments in Greensboro (BIG) Equity Fund. Funds are applied to critical issues in the Black community.

The BIG Equity Fund — the first permanent endowment of its kind in Greensboro — was established in 2019. A quarter million dollars was raised from Black donors early on, and the community-wide campaign is roughly halfway towards reaching its $3 million endowment goal. Current priorities include addressing the digital divide, wealth building, and health care — disparities laid bare by the pandemic. Another is small business development.

That’s the issue covered by Piedmont Business Capital’s grant proposal. They say some Black-owned companies in the Greensboro area are shut out of bidding on projects due to less working capital compared to bigger firms. Piedmont proposes a bonding assistance reimbursement program to cover fees. Additionally, it would provide coaching and financial literacy programs.

On Tuesday, the company received a $100,000 grant from the BIG Equity Fund — $50,000 a year over the next two years. The award coincides with Black Philanthropy Month, a global celebration and campaign for funding equity. The money will be overseen by The Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro.

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