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New program supports entrepreneurs, small businesses



Oklahoma City has launched many different resources and support services for small businesses over the past couple of years to help business owners with advice, road maps, and in some cases, funding for startup and existing businesses.

Over the next several weeks and months, the OKC Rescue Program will roll out new support programs to help entrepreneurs, small businesses and people looking for new skills to enhance their job opportunities.

We are proud to support the OKC Latino Accelerator, a new program from StitchCrew that will provide Latino-owned businesses in Oklahoma City a path to grow their businesses. The program is accepting applications until Feb. 10 at www.stitchcrew.com/latino-accelerator. To qualify, businesses must be registered in Oklahoma, be minority-owned, have fewer than 100 full-time employees and be based in Oklahoma City.

Participants will have the opportunity to refine their approach to build scalable business models and compound revenue. Participants will have access to working space at the Thunder Launchpad, business coaching from industry executives, investors and business leaders and weekly content with working sessions and one-on-one meetings. Once they’ve completed the program, participants will receive a $15,000 non-dilutive grant.

Selected companies must commit to having at least one founder participate in an eight-week program that will run in the spring of 2023 with weekly sessions, optional office hours and an in-person, half-day event. Additional opportunities to engage with capital providers, executives and thought leaders will be available throughout the program.

The cost of participation is underwritten by the OKC Rescue Program and paid directly to StitchCrew on behalf of qualified participants. The OKC Rescue Program was created to help individuals, entrepreneurs and small businesses in our community recover and thrive after the pandemic and is funded through an allocation of $20 million from the Oklahoma City Council using ARPA funding. As part of the federal American Rescue Plan Act, the Alliance for Economic Development of Oklahoma City administers the funding for these programs.

A key component of the OKC Rescue Program is support for minority businesses. We’ve worked to develop partnerships with existing training and coaching providers across Oklahoma City to expand what they’re doing and help them reach more people across our city with training, coaching, resources and financial support. We look forward to announcing more programs soon.

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