You Spoke, We Listened! New Miami Open for Business Program Updates

Happy 2023, to all the entrepreneurs and nonprofit leaders who have been following the Miami Open for Business program. We are thrilled to manage this $20 million program, fueled by a Wells Fargo donation, to provide grants and loans to historically underserved small businesses for asset building.

After our first round of funding in late 2022, we took a long pause to gather user feedback and reflect on the successes and areas for improvement from this first cycle.

As a result, we are rolling out this next round with a variety of updates, based on your feedback.

Read below to see what’s new and different for 2023!

Communications

  • Brand new website and flyers: As you may have noticed, we redesigned our website to have one single portal for things Open for Business! We also have brand new flyers with simplified information so you can share each of the 3 financial products with your contacts.
  • New text line for quicker responses: Instead of waiting on hold or leaving a voicemail, you can now text someone from the Open for Business team with your questions. Use your cell phone to text: 786-297-8166.
  • In-person office hours throughout the application period: Instead of offering a few webinars at the beginning of the grant period, the Open for Business team will be available to meet in person on several occasions before the deadline to answer your questions and walk through the application in detail. Check out these dates on the
    calendar for in-person office hours.

Microgrant for Technology or Equipment

  • Bundle hardware and software in a technology request: Last year, microgrant applicants could only request one of two categories within technology. Now, technology requests can include both hardware and software programs. Microgrant applicants must still choose between either technology or equipment so we can maximize the number of businesses funded.
  • Open for 2 months: We have extended the amount of time the microgrant application is open, so you have two full months to prepare your application. Applications are due by May 31 st , 2023.

Collective Real Estate Ownership (CREO)

  • Rolling deadlines for multiple chances to apply: This year, we are offering 3 different deadlines (the 15th of every other month: April, June, August) for CREO so you can apply based on your organizations’ individual progress in the purchase process.
  • Quicker notification timelines: We acknowledge the speed of the real estate market can make it difficult for grant partners to move forward on a property. This year, we will provide applicants with a response by the end of the month after applying, so you can know whether or not you were selected (by May 31st, July 31st, and September 30th).

Technical Assistance (TA)

  • Business support providers now available to help: This year, we are partnering with organizations who know about the Open for Business program and can help you with your application, financial documents, and general advice on how to grow your business. Check out this page to get more information about each of them!
  • Commercial real estate workshop series: We are also going to launch a series of workshops so applicants interested in the CREO program can get advice on how to approach the real estate acquisition process. Dates and details to be provided on our website soon! Sign up for our newsletter to be the first to hear about the workshops.

We hope that you enjoy these updates and take advantage of all of the services we offer through Miami Open for Business.

Thank you for your feedback and we look forward to another successful round of funding!

Brittany Morgan
Economic Resilience Director
The Miami Foundation

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