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Prince George’s County Economic Development Corporation Announces Receipt of $20,000
Wells Fargo Award to Support Small and Minority-Owned Businesses

By LORI VALENTINE
PGC Economic Development Corporation

Largo, Md. (October 29, 2019)—The Prince George’s County Economic Development Corporation (PGCEDC) recently received a $20,000 grant from Wells Fargo to provide technical assistance and business financial planning to disadvantaged, minority-owned businesses in Prince George’s County, MD. Prince George’s County Executive Angela Alsobrooks applauded the award as an important tool for local businesses.

“Minority owned businesses are a vital part of our local economy,” said County Executive Angela Alsobrooks. “We appreciate national partners like Wells Fargo for their support and commitment to providing local businesses with the tools they need to become financially sound and profitable. This grant, in collaboration with our Economic Development Corporation and FSC First should ultimately provide local, minority owned businesses with the access to capital most small businesses are in need of to growth and to thrive.”

On December 10, 2019, the PGCEDC will launch Pathways to Financial Management for Businesses, a new initiative that will provide traditionally underserved, minority-owned businesses the technical assistance they need to successfully manage their business finances. Through this initiative, the PGCEDC and its lending partner FSC First, will hold a series of six seminars on topics from ‘Financial Planning’ to ‘How to Approach Lenders for Financing’. The Kick-off event in December will introduce participants to the program and will include a panel of bankers and finance experts. The series will conclude with a matchmaking event where the program graduates will meet one-on-one with lenders and apply for financing on-site.

“We support investment in minority-owned businesses and see it as a critical part of what we do here at the Economic Development Corporation,” said David Iannucci, President & CEO of the PGCEDC. “Today’s small and minority-owned businesses face many challenges to loan approval and accessing capital, which often leads to an inability to manufacture products, increase employment, and scale their business. We hope to address these and many others through this pilot program.”

According to the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) minority-owned small business loan applications are approved at a lower rate than non-minority businesses and when approved for a loan, they typically receive more than 50% less than non-minority ones and at higher rates. PGCEDC’s new initiative seeks to improve these odds by ensuring that participants who complete the series are sufficiently prepared to submit a loan application and have an overall understanding about successful business finance practices.

“We are pleased to collaborate with the PGCEDC to further empower our local business owners and improve their access to capital”, said Shelly Gross-Wade, President & CEO of the FSC First.

For more information please contact Kathi Barber 301-583-4621 or kbarber@co.pg.md.us.

 

The Prince George’s County Economic Development Corporation, a 501c3 nonprofit, provides business services that help attract, retain, and expand businesses and create high-quality jobs. PGCEDC’s is to cultivate an environment where entrepreneurs and businesses thrive. Our vision is a strong economy that retains its current businesses and attracts new ones which leads to more high-wage jobs—all which transforms lives. The PGCEDC’s services include Business Development, Small Business Services through the Innovation Station (a business incubator program and co-working space), International Business Development and a range of incentives for businesses in the County.

The Prince George’s Financial Services Corporation (FSC First), a 501c3 non-profit, a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), SBA 504 Certified Development Company (CDC) and Community Advantage Lender provides direct loans using creative and innovative financing solutions.

For more information, contact 301-883-6900 or visit www.fscfirst.com.

 

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Statement by President Donnell Williams On Increase of 3rd Quarter 2019 Black Homeownership Rate

By ANTOINE THOMPSON
NAREB

Washington, DC (October 29, 2019)—The National Association of Real Estate Brokers (NAREB) is cautiously encouraged about the U.S. Census Bureau’s third quarter 2019 Black homeownership rate of 42.7% up from 40.6% in the previous quarter.  While all of the homeownership rates increased during this latest reporting period, the Black homeownership increase of 2.1% represented the largest uptick.  In the bigger picture, NAREB is mindful that Black homeownership currently and continues to lag more than 30 percentage points behind the non-Hispanic White homeownership rate of 73.4%, higher than the recorded gap at the time of the passage of the 1968 Fair Housing Act.

Robust seasonal home purchase activity during the summer months generally accounts for the overall increases in all ethnic and general market categories. I am hopeful, however, that NAREB’s boots-on-the-ground approach and other homeownership advocates will continue to support an upward trend of Black homeownership rates into the fourth quarter 2019 and beyond.

We know and take into consideration the volatility of the real estate marketplace and the prevailing purchasing distrust that runs alongside economic vagaries particularly in the Black community. Nevertheless, I remain confident that concerted efforts to educate and inform Black homebuyers about the wealth building aspects of homeownership versus uncertain and rising rental rates, will prevail.

 

The National Association of Real Estate Brokers (NAREB) was formed in 1947 to secure the right to equal housing opportunities regardless of race, creed or color. NAREB has advocated for legislation and supported or instigated legal challenges that ensure fair housing, sustainable homeownership, and access to credit for Black Americans. At the same time, NAREB advocates for and promotes access to business opportunity for Black real estate professionals in all of the real estate disciplines. NAREB annually publishes The State of Housing in Black America report.  www.nareb.com

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