Charter Communications Inc. is investing $10 million in an initiative designed to help strengthen minority-owned small businesses.
The Stamford-based company is allocating $3 million from its Spectrum Community Investment Loan Fund to the Urban Empowerment Fund, a community development financial institution (CDFI) operated by the National Urban League, and an additional $500,000 capacity grant will be given to the civil rights organization for revitalizing its CDFI platform.
An additional $3 million is invested in low-interest loans to CDFIs under the direction of Rev. Al Sharpton’s National Action Network, and $3.5 million will be used by Charter’s loan fund to finance additional opportunities with existing partners.
“In all communities, small-business ownership and growth are fundamental to developing and sustaining economic power, which is critical to their long-term success,” said Tom Rutledge, chairman and CEO of Charter Communications. “Building on our valued partnerships with the National Urban League and National Action Network, these investments will support small diverse-owned businesses through access to much-needed low-interest capital and help build thriving communities across the country.”
Charter began its loan fund in February with a commitment to invest an initial $10 million in capital by the end of 2021 with low-interest loans through CDFIs that would be provided to small businesses focused on underserved communities.
Charter previously announced $1 million investments in Pursuit Community Finance in New York, PeopleFund in Texas, and the Economic and Community Development Institute in Ohio, and plans invest an additional $4 million across CDFIs in California, Florida, North Carolina and Wisconsin over the next year.