A Comcast RISE participant stands in her gym.
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Comcast RISE Investment Fund Provides $16 Million in Grants to Support Small Businesses Hardest Hit By the COVID-19 Pandemic

Comcast RISE Investment Fund Provides $16 Million in Grants to Support Small Businesses Hardest Hit By the COVID-19 Pandemic

Key Takeaways

Small businesses in Atlanta, Detroit, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, and Twin Cities are now eligible to apply for a $10,000 grant from the Comcast RISE Investment Fund, bringing the total to $16 million in grants since the program’s inception just 18 months ago.
In addition, 1,317 small businesses will also receive marketing and technology support through the Comcast RISE program, bringing total awardees to more than 8,000 to date.

New York, NY

Comcast announced today a new round of cities will receive grants from the Comcast RISE Investment Fund, providing an additional $5 million dollars to hundreds of small businesses owned by people of color, including Black, Indigenous, Hispanic, and Asian American owners, and women, bringing the total to $16 million in grants awarded as part of the Comcast RISE Investment Fund initiative.

Beginning on June 1, and through June 14, eligible businesses in Atlanta, Detroit, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, and the Twin Cities can apply for a $10,000 grant at www.ComcastRISE.com. A total of 100 grants per city, or 500 grants overall, will be announced and awarded in July 2022. The Investment Fund is an extension of Comcast RISE, the multi-year, multi-faceted initiative launched in October 2020 to support small businesses and provide the resources and tools they need today and in the future.

Comcast RISE Recipients to Date

Comcast also announced the latest round of Comcast RISE recipients, which includes 1,317 small businesses owned by people of color and women, that will receive grants in the form of a TV campaign, production of a TV commercial or consulting services from Effectv or computer equipment, internet, voice or cybersecurity from Comcast Business, as well as access to Ureeka, an online platform for entrepreneurs with a specialized online networking community with educational resources, sources of capital, and vetted experts. To date, more than 8,000 Comcast RISE awardees have been announced and the program will have provided grants supporting 13,000 small businesses by the end of 2022.

“While we know that no single organization can solve historic and systemic inequities overnight, we are committed to taking tangible actions that can drive long-term impact and change,” said Teresa Ward-Maupin, Senior Vice President, Digital and Customer Experience, Comcast Business. “Comcast RISE and the Comcast RISE Investment Fund offer the opportunity for small businesses owned by people of color and women to help grow their businesses, create jobs, and play a vital role in supporting our communities.”

This new round of Comcast RISE grants will provide more entrepreneurs with the resources and tools they need to scale their businesses and thrive for years to come.
Teresa Ward-Maupin
Senior Vice President, Digital and Customer Experience, Comcast Business

The Comcast RISE Investment Fund is focused on small businesses that have been in business for three or more years with 1-25 employees. Businesses must be in the following geographic locations to be eligible in this round: Atlanta (Clayton, Cobb, DeKalb, Fulton, and Gwinnett Counties), Detroit (City of Detroit including Hamtramck and Highland Park), Pittsburgh (Allegheny County), Philadelphia (Philadelphia County), and the Twin Cities (Anoka, Carver, Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey, Scott, and Washington Counties).

To help drive awareness about the program and provide additional support, training, and mentorship, Comcast has also awarded support to Operation Hope, Ureeka, U.S. Black Chambers, U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Hispanic Heritage Foundation, National Asian American Chamber of Commerce, National CAPACD, Native Women Lead, National Congress of American Indians, Walker’s Legacy, Women Impacting Public Policy, Blavity.org, and nearly 40 community-based organizations in Atlanta, Detroit, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, and the Twin Cities.

“Ureeka is proud to partner with Comcast RISE to grow small businesses nationwide with coaching and digital services,” said, Melissa Bradley, Co-Founder, Ureeka. “We know there are stark disparities in access to capital and resources for entrepreneurs of color and women entrepreneurs. The additional coaching and digital resources that these businesses receive, in addition to potential monetary funding, will help these businesses gain valuable skills and opportunities that will help them move from survive to thrive.”

Comcast RISE Marketing and Technology Services

In addition to the Investment Fund, Comcast RISE, which stands for “Representation, Investment, Strength and Empowerment,” provides the opportunity for small businesses owned by people of color and women nationwide to apply for grants for one or more of the following support focus areas with the opportunity to receive one.

  • Marketing Services Grant: The following services from Effectv, the advertising sales division of Comcast Cable, and its creative agency, Mnemonic, are designed to help recipients with their marketing and media campaigns, including:
  • Media: A linear TV media campaign to run over a 90-day period.
  • Creative Production: Turnkey :30 TV commercial production, plus a media strategy consultation and 90-day media placement schedule.
  • Consult: Digital audits by Ureeka in the form of Website Repair Reports and SEO Keyword reports to target website mechanics and effective organic marketing
  • Technology Makeover Grants: The state-of-the-art equipment and technology upgrade from Comcast Business includes computer equipment as well as Internet, Voice, and Cybersecurity services for up to a 12-month period. (Taxes and other fees may still apply for technology makeover services.)
  • Monetary Grants: In round one, which was announced in April of 2021, the Comcast RISE Investment Fund provided $5 million in grants to 500 small businesses owned by people of color in five cities: Philadelphia/Chester, Houston, Atlanta, Chicago, and Detroit. In round two, which was announced in September of 2021, the Comcast RISE Investment Fund provided $6 million in grants to 600 small businesses in six cities: Miami, Houston, Oakland, Seattle, the Twin Cities, and Washington, D.C. As noted above, the Comcast RISE Investment Fund will provide an additional $5 million in grants to 500 small businesses owned by people of color and women in five cities: Atlanta, Detroit, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, and the Twin Cities.   

All eligible applicants will receive a monthly Comcast RISE newsletter with educational content, and all small business owners can visit the Comcast RISE destination on the X1 platform featuring aggregated small business news, tips, insights, and more. Just say “Comcast RISE” into the X1 voice remote.

Comcast’s Ongoing Commitment to Advancing Digital Equity

Comcast RISE is part of Comcast’s ongoing efforts to advance digital equity and help provide underrepresented small business owners with access to the digital tools and funding they need to thrive. Over the next 10 years, Comcast has committed $1 billion to programs and partnerships that will reach tens of millions of people with the skills, opportunities, and resources they need to succeed in an increasingly digital world.

More information and the applications to apply for either the grant program or marketing and technology services are available at www.ComcastRISE.com.