Expanding Access to Business Opportunities for BIPOC and Minority Business Owners: A Resource Guide

Written By: Sophia Carter | Updated/Verified: May 16, 2024

The significance of BIPOC-owned businesses in the United States has seen a remarkable trajectory of growth and resilience. Black-owned firms alone witnessed their gross revenue leap by an astounding 43% from an estimated $127.9 billion in 2017 to $183.3 billion in 2021. During the same period, the number of Black-owned businesses grew by over 6,000 firms, a 4.72% increase, showcasing vibrant dynamism and an entrepreneurial spirit that continues to strengthen the fabric of the American economy.

Despite facing unique challenges, these businesses have shown remarkable resilience and innovation. The statistics above not only highlight the significant strides made by BIPOC and minority-owned businesses but also underscore the ongoing need for targeted support and resources. What kind of resources, you might ask? Anything that can help BIPOC and minority business owners overcome systemic barriers and achieve equitable success in the competitive business landscape.

That’s where we come in. We’ve collected a slew of BIPOC and minority-owned business resources to help aspiring or current business owners survive and thrive in a cutthroat business market. By reviewing and sharing these resources, you can do your part in uplifting communities and fostering a more inclusive business environment for everyone.

Though minorities make up 32% of our population, minority business ownership represents online 18% of the population.

Resources for SMB

Licenses and Permits

U.S. Small Business Authority (SBA)

Turn to the Small Business Administration (SBA) to find out what permits and licenses your small business needs and apply for them online.

Internal Revenue Service (IRS)

The IRS helps you find out how to file business taxes based on your business type and offers all required forms on its website.

A Guide to Small Business Taxes 

H&R Block goes over the types of taxes you may need to file as a small business owner and shows you the steps to take when you file.

Books

Small Business Bookkeeping: A Beginner’s Guide 

Use this guide to find out what bookkeeping entails, the best platforms to use, and how to do bookkeeping for your business with help from Fresh Books.

All-in-One Software Solutions for Small Business 

Intuit shows you the benefits of using Quickbooks and what you can do, including creating profit and loss forms and keeping track of your payroll.

Health and Safety

Helping Small Businesses 

This page from the U.S. Department of Labor provides links to great advice for small business owners, as well as OSHA information and compliance guides.

Insurance

Get Business Insurance 

The SBA explains the different types of business insurance you might need, who will benefit from each type, and what it covers.

Customer Management

Free CRM Software & Tools for Your Whole Team 

Learn how to get free CRM software and tools here that your entire team can use to manage your customer base, keep them happy, and track your profits.

Legal Help

Small Business Legal Center 

From NFIB, the Small Business Legal Center provides a handbook for those who need help, offers referrals to lawyers, and offers many helpful tips.

Organizations

Black American Chamber of Commerce 

Known as the BACC, this organization helps black business owners in Portland and nearby areas get help through local programs and meetings.

The Greenlining Institute 

The Greenlining Institute works at the community level to bridge equity gaps, transform areas, and provide members with helpful resources and programs.

Black Business Association 

Joining the BBA allows you to take advantage of programs like applying for SBA programs and attending exclusive events only for black business owners.

Black Business and Professional Association 

This organization is open to black men and women who want to attend meetings and join programs like its tax day clinic and youth development initiative.

National Black Chamber of Commerce 

Learn about diversity in the workplace, government work, blockchain investing, and much more when you join the National Black Chamber of Commerce.

National Black MBA Association, Inc. 

With more than 11,000 members and 40 chapters, this is one of the nation’s most prominent black business associations, and the website tells you how you can join.

The Black Upstart 

The Black Upstart holds boot camps for People of Color who are entrepreneurs and provides training for students who want to learn how to open a business.

Ace Next Gen 

Ace Next Gen is an organization that offers many programs, such as a women’s initiative and retreats, where you can learn from current, former, and future entrepreneurs.

Asian American Business Development Center 

As an Asian American, joining this organization helps you find programs for entrepreneurs like you and allows you to win one of its major awards.

AAPI Strong 

AAPI Strong has corporate partners that help it provide more than $8 million in grants annually and host a yearly conference and other events.

National Minority Supplier Development Council 

The NMSDC wants to help anyone live the American dream through advocacy, assisting members to become certified, and connecting them with other professionals.

Forward Cities 

Also known as Black Wall Street Forward, this organization has special programs in various North Carolina cities and can help you secure business funding.

Code2040 

Led by People of Color, Code2040 has a program for those who need financial help, but it also hosts community events and has a fellow option to pair you with a mentor.

Black Girl Ventures 

Black Girl Ventures connects members to mentors, provides training for those who need more support, and shows members how to get business capital.

Asian-owned businesses had the largest estimated receipts $1.0 trillion among minority race groups.

Funding

Backstage Capital 

Backstage Capital knows that less than 10% of the available funding goes to minority businesses, so it began as a way to help those owners gain access to working capital.

Techstars 

Techstars invests in startups in the early stages of development, helping more than 4,000 owners get the funds they need to launch and grow their businesses.

SBA Mentor-Protege Program 

The SBA helps you get the advice and help you need through this program, which pairs you with a mentor with experience in your field or industry.

MBDA Grants 

Visit The Minority Business Development Agency to learn about the federal grants you can apply for, all available through the federal government.

National Black Business Pitch 

Discover various opportunities when you join the National Black Business Pitch, including multiple grants and other programs that help you launch your business.

Growth Grants 

The National Association for the Self-Employed offers grants of up to $4,000, which can help you launch or grow a business as long as you complete the required steps.

Galaxy Grants 

This website allows you to apply for a Galaxy Grant and receive up to $3,750 from a major nonprofit organization with eight years of experience.

The Transform Business Grant 

The Transform Business Grant awards $1,000 to different types of businesses, emphasizing those owned by women and other minorities.

HerRise MicroGrant 

While small grants won’t help you cover everything you need, HerRise enables you to apply for a small grant that takes your business idea to the next level.

Corporate Council Women of Color 

Visit this website to complete a simple application and see how to get one of the five $2,500 grants awarded annually to women of color.

The Freed Fellowship 

If your business could benefit from a $2,500 grant, visit The Freed Fellowship website to apply for one of its grants and get two months to join the organization for free.

Wish Local Empowerment Program 

Apply today to the Wish Local Empowerment Program to get a business grant of up to $2,000 from a fund that awards $2 million every year.

Black Historic Small Restaurants 

As part of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, this program awards a $50,000 grant to 50 small historic restaurants in the country with black owners.

FedEx Small Business Grants Program 

FedEx runs a program annually that awards one $50,000 grant and nine $20,000 grants to small businesses with minority owners who need financial support.

The Lip Bar 

The Lip Bar is a popular beauty brand known for its shades for African American women. It also offers grants for minority-owned businesses.

Pow Wow Pitch 

Indigenous entrepreneurs who need help can apply for one of the grants from Pow Wow Pitch to win cash prizes worth $10,000 and apply for other resources.

Research

A Look at Black-Owned Businesses in the U.S. 

The Pew Research Center examines American black-owned businesses in depth to determine facts such as where the companies are and what motivates the owners.

Census Bureau Releases New Data on Minority-Owned, Veteran-Owned, and Women-Owned Businesses 

Find facts from the U.S. Census Bureau about businesses owned by women, veterans, and minorities, including how much they make and how many they employ.

The Economic Development Potential of Minority-Owned Businesses 

In this article, the authors look at the barriers that prevent minorities from owning businesses and how this changed with time to lead to more businesses opening.

Minority Business Growth 

The U.S. Department of Commerce maintains an extensive list of articles, press releases, and other resources to help readers find out about the growth of minority businesses.

Minority-Owned Employer Businesses and Their Credit Market Experiences in 2017 

This report from the SBA Office of Advocacy provides information on the experiences minority business owners had in 2017 and what this means for the future.

Secular Trends in Minority-Owned Businesses and Small Business Finance 

This piece from the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago analyzes current financial data to examine some of the trends within the minority-owned business industry.

2023 Vital Signs: The Health of Minority-Owned Small Businesses 

Third Way examines the health of minority-owned small businesses like a doctor would give an idea of the major trends in 2023.

The Economic Development Potential of Minority-Owned Businesses 

Read this article to learn what prevents minorities from opening and running small businesses and how this has changed in recent years.

Minority Businesses Help Drive America's Economic Success

Minority Businesses Help Drive America's Economic Success 

From the U.S. Department of Commerce, this article looks at the success of minority-owned businesses and how the number operating in the nation grew.

Introduction: Advancing Research on Minority Entrepreneurship 

Published in 2017, this journal article discusses some of the challenges minorities face when opening small businesses and why more research is so important.

The State of Black Entrepreneurship in America 

This PDF, which is 40 pages long, details the relationship between minority-owned businesses in the United States and the nation’s immigration policies.

There were approximately 5.9 million employer firms in total, of which, 1.2 million (21%) were minority-owned.

Podcasts

Equity in Business Podcast: The Powerful Evolution of the Minority Business Development Agency 

Donald Cravens, Jr., worked for the Department of Commerce and appears in this podcast to discuss recent changes in the business industry.

Latina to Latina 

Though not just about business, the Latina to Latina podcast takes listeners on a ride through interviews and chats on the challenges of being a minority.

LATINXCAN 

LATINXCAN is a podcast in which Latin professionals talk to Dr. Jeniree Flores Delgado about how they succeeded despite the challenges they faced.

Pow Wow Pitch 

Pow Wow Pitch focuses on indigenous business owners and provides an excellent place to share their experiences opening and running their businesses.

Black Entrepreneur Experience 

Hear from entrepreneurs who made millions in different industries and how they reached that point in the Black Entrepreneur Experience podcast.

Journey to Launch 

Journey to Launch is a podcast with more than 300 episodes. It features interviews with professionals and offers advice on gaining the financial freedom you want.

Side Hustle Pro 

In Side Hustle Pro, you’ll learn how female entrepreneurs of color turned their side hustles into businesses and how you can do it, too.

Girl CEO 

Check out the Girl CEO website and then listen to the podcast to learn from female entrepreneurs how to build your brand and grow your business.

Sisternomics

Since its start in 2019, Sisternomics has tackled the topics that women need to know, including how to manage their money when they marry and invest funds.

The Black Entrepreneur Blueprint Podcast 

Black entrepreneurs share their experiences with this podcast, discussing the challenges and issues they faced to help listeners solve their problems.

Media and Books

Black Enterprise 

Black Enterprise started an annual day to encourage people of color to launch small businesses and offer news on the latest information in the black community.

Minority Business Success: Refocusing on The American Dream 

The authors of Minority Business Success used it to share data on businesses owned by minorities and to show others how they can follow their steps.

Start Your Own Business: The Only Startup Book You’ll Ever Need 

Entrepreneur Media authors wrote this book to help readers see the steps they need to take to launch a successful business and provide them with other helpful information.

MBE Mag 

MBE Mag posts a few times a week to help readers learn the latest news about small businesses and major corporations and provide information on applying for funding.

Black Business 

Black Business is an online magazine devoted to helping readers learn about black-owned businesses, the top organizations to join, and where to get funding.

Profit First For Minority Business Enterprises 

Learn how to avoid some of the struggles other minority entrepreneurs experienced in this book, which teaches you how to put your profits first.

Build the Damn Thing: How to Start a Successful Business If You’re Not a Rich White Guy 

Kathryn Finney is an entrepreneur and capitalist who wants to show you how to make your business successful and get the financial support you need.

Thriving as a Minority-Owned Business in Corporate America: Building a Pathway to Success for Minority Entrepreneurs 

William Cunningham wrote this book as a detailed guide for minorities who want to start a business, providing them with the guidance and help they need.

The Minority and Women-Owned Small Business Guide to Government Contracts: Everything You Need to Know to Get Started 

Linda Rawson’s book for women and minorities sets you on a path to success by ensuring you know the fundamentals of getting started.

Get Good with Money 

This book teaches you that you don’t need a lot of capital to start your business because it provides ten practical tips that help you stick to a budget.

Cultural Intelligence for Marketers: Building an Inclusive Marketing Strategy 

Learn how to build a marketing strategy that works with your business and helps you increase your profits in this book from a marketing professional.

Hispanic Market Power: America's Business Growth Engine 

Isaac Mizrahi is a leading CEO who discusses the changes businesses need to make regarding Hispanics using his experience as a Hispanic man.

Cultura and Cash: Lessons from the First Gen Mentor for Managing Finances and Cultural Expectations 

Written by a first-generation Latino, this book examines the challenges facing other Latinos and how they need to manage their expectations.

Humanocracy: Creating Organizations as Amazing as the People Inside Them 

The authors behind Humanocracy challenge today’s organizations and talk about the changes they need to make in the future to become more inclusive.

Allyship Resources

Google Can Help You Find Black-Owned Businesses: Here’s How 

Learn how you can find black-owned businesses in your areas with help from Google in this article, which allows you to support those in your area.

How to Find and Support Black-Owned Businesses – And Why It’s Important 

In this short article, Dylan Haas explains why you should support local black-owned businesses and some of the reasons why it’s important.

13 Ways to Support Black-Owned Businesses and Organizations 

Learn from Brett Farmiloe how your support can help a black-owned business become more visible, increase its profits, and provide other benefits.

13 Ways to Support Black-Owned Businesses and Organizations 

Like the last article, this goes over other reasons to support black businesses and organizations, including using social media and changing hiring policies.

Empowering BIPOC Small Businesses in the Face of Adversity 

The Greenlining Institute goes over the initiatives and the future of black-owned businesses to show how they can succeed even in the face of adversity.

The Real Reason to Support BIPOC Brands 

Mitra Kalita of Charter addresses why the world should support BIPOC brands, including helping businesses become more visible and changing the industry.

Supporting BIPOC and Women-Owned Small Businesses 

Giving Compass offers this article to help you understand why you should support businesses owned by women or BIPOC, such as assisting them in securing the funding they need.

Five Ways City Leaders Can Support Black Entrepreneurs’ Efforts to ‘Buy Back the Block’ 

Learn how buying back the block works, how it benefits black business owners and their communities, and how city leaders can help.

7 Ways to Create Economic Inclusion for Minority-Owned Businesses 

Look at the seven best reasons to help minority-owned businesses and their owners, such as celebrating their wins and helping them invest in each other.

23+ Black-Owned Small Business Directories 

Read short descriptions of more than 23 directories that help you support black-owned businesses here and find links to visit or use each one.

How to Find BIPOC, Woman, and Minority-Owned Businesses for Your Next Home Project 

NOMA shared this article from Real Simple to help you see how you can spread the wealth around and use minority-owned businesses to renovate your home.

Search Our Black-Owned Business Directory 

Available from Nationally Black Owned, this online directory lets you search for black-owned businesses based on your needs and where you live.

The Network Journal 

Discover how you can become an ally when you subscribe to this site or check out its stories covering different topics and a whole section for black entrepreneurs.

TechCabal 

TechCabal is a unique website that shares technology news and often focuses on stories that appeal to people of color and minority business owners.

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