Comcast Offers Thousands of Grants, Equipment, Marketing and Technology Resources to Businesses Hardest Hit by COVID-19

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Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ: CMCSA) this week launched Comcast RISE, an initiative created to help strengthen and empower smalbusinesses hard hit by COVID-19. The Comcast RISE program will help thousands of small businesses over the next three years. The multi-faceted program offers grants, marketing, and technology upgrades, including media campaigns and connectivity, computer and voice equipment, as well as free marketing insights to all applicants.

U.S. small businesses have been particularly hard hit by the pandemic. A recent study from the National Bureau of Economic Research found that the number of U.S. active business owners dropped from 15 million to 11.7 million from February to April. The study cited that Black-owned small businesses were hardest hit, suffering the steepest decline (41%), followed by Hispanic and Asian American-owned small businesses.

The program will roll out in waves, and starting Oct. 13, U.S.-based Black-owned small businesses can apply for marketing and technology support and equipment to jumpstart and help them sustain business operations. In addition, all small businesses are able to sign up for free marketing insights and resources. The next wave of the program will open up eligibility to include Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC), those next hit hardest by the effects of the pandemic.

Comcast decided to launch Comcast RISE, which stands for “Representation, Investment, Strength, and Empowerment,” to help the hardest-hit small business owners get a fresh start and boost their operations during this difficult time. Comcast RISE brings together two of the company’s brands —Comcast Business and Effectv, both with expertise in the small business space — to help empower business owners with the tools, expertise, and resources needed to navigate the economic effects of the pandemic.

Comcast RISE consists of the following main components:

  • A media and technology resources program: This pillar combines Effectv’s renowned media platform and marketing expertise, its award-winning creative agency, Mnemonic, and state-of-the-art technical support from Comcast Business to help small businesses foster and elevate growth. Recipients will receive help with their marketing, media campaigns, and creation of 30-second commercials, as well as website and tech upgrades, including:
    • Consulting: Advertising and marketing consultations with local Effectv marketing, research, and creative teams to gain insights on how to grow your business.
    • Media: A linear TV media campaign to run over a 90-day period.
    • Creative Production: Turnkey :30 TV commercial production for their businesses.
    • Technology Makeovers: Computer equipment and Internet, voice, and cybersecurity services for up to a 12-month period to support business recovery while implementing other Comcast small business initiatives. (Taxes and other fees may still apply for tech makeover services.)
  • Business resources to help with curated content: Comcast will create a business learning destination page on the X1 platform. This will include programming content about small businesses, tutorials, and educational content intended to help businesses grow.
  • Grants: In the coming monthsComcast will be awarding grants of up to $10,000 each for U.S.-based small and diverse businesses that have been in operations for three to five years.

Comcast RISE is part of a larger $100 million Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion initiative that Comcast launched this summer. In June, Comcast NBCUniversal announced the development of a comprehensive, multiyear plan to allocate $75 million in cash and $25 million in media over the next three years to fight injustice and inequality against any race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, or ability.

In the future, the program aims to expand to other small and diverse business owners. Visit http://www.ComcastRISE.com for more information on eligibility requirements, and the latest updates.

View the full press release from Comcast.


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