Comcast has announced that more than 700 Black-owned businesses are slated to receive consulting, media, and creative production services from Effectv, the advertising sales division of Comcast Cable, or technology upgrades from Comcast Business.
This news marks the first round of Comcast RISE award recipients. Comcast RISE is an initiative that is part of a larger $100 million Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion initiative that Comcast launched this past summer. Back in June, Comcast NBCUniversal had announced that they were developing a comprehensive, multiyear plan to allocate $75 million in cash and $25 million in media over the next three years that will go towards the fight towards injustice and inequality against any race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation or ability.
The Comcast RISE award recipients include 166 Black-owned small businesses in Greater Philadelphia. Those businesses include restaurants and salons to professional services and retail shops. 3,300 small businesses have already signed up for the Comcast RISE monthly newsletter, which will offer free marketing insights and resources.
“At a time when so many small businesses across the state are struggling, it is humbling to be a part of an organization that is helping to give back to those most affected by the pandemic,” said Michael Louden, regional vice president for Comcast Business in a written statement. “It’s been powerful to connect with the selected business owners and hear their stories. They have so much perseverance and resilience as they continue to grow their businesses and look for opportunities to make an impact on their local communities. I’m looking forward to continuing the program’s momentum and being able to offer further support to the BIPOC community.”
The first phase of Comcast RISE, which stands for “Representation, Investment, Strength, and Empowerment,” had just focused on U.S. Black-owned, small businesses that were hit hardest by the pandemic according to a recent study from the National Bureau of Economic Research. The next phase has opened up to assist more people. Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC)-owned, small businesses can all apply now.
“The fitness and wellness industry has been among the most impacted by the pandemic and resulting in stay-at-home orders. At the onset of the pandemic, I was applying for grants and looking for any kind of funding help to survive. And then I heard about Comcast RISE. Receiving this grant has been a godsend,” said Osayi Osunde, Owner and Co-founder of Philadelphia-based Fit Academy. “It’s been reassuring that people see the impact we’re trying to make from a health and wellness perspective, especially at a time when it’s critical to keep people healthy, both mentally and physically. We are grateful for the support the program has provided and how it’s allowed us to continue serving our community during this time.”
For more information on this initiative, visit www.ComcastRISE.com.