Wells Fargo’s Online Resource Helps Support Small Businesses Through the COVID-19 Pandemic and Beyond

Originally published at newsroom.wf.com. Wells Fargo ranked No. 25 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2021.

 

On August 5, Wells Fargo received the 2021 Apex Award and the 2021 Gramercy Banking and Credit Union Award in recognition of its online Small Business Resource Center. The website was launched in July 2020 to help small business owners during the beginning few months of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Since launching the Small Business Resource Center, the website has helped nearly 900,00 small businesses with access to tools, resources and financial assistance to help weather one of the largest economic downturns in history.

By delivering timely, actionable information through articles, webinars, and videos, the website helps small business owners adapt and pivot their business models, keeping their employees paid and their doors open during the pandemic.

“When the pandemic hit, we knew our small business customers needed us more than ever,” said Mary Mack, CEO of Consumer and Small Business Banking at Wells Fargo. “In addition to capital assistance, we recognized the vital need to provide small business owners with actionable, practical, and empathetic support and advice so they could take immediate steps to adapt to the crisis and build their businesses. We put ourselves in the shoes of small business owners to ensure we were providing them some of what they needed to not only get through each day but to help get through the many months of the pandemic and beyond.”

Centered on five key themes — business strategy, capital considerations, connections, insights, and marketing — the Small Business Resource Center provides information in a variety of formats to help small business owners. The site offers clear actionable steps and provides worksheets that owners can take to develop action plans that help them adapt or pivot their businesses in a time of crisis. It also helps small business owners learn how to find mentors and create networks, discover insights into big-picture trends in business and the economy, and learn how to create a marketing message that speaks to where their customers are now.

The Apex Awards are an annual competition developed by Communication Concepts for corporate and nonprofit publishers, editors, writers, and designers who create print, web, electronic, and social media. This year featured a special COVID-19 media category for organizations that went above and beyond to provide information to help customers weather the pandemic.

The Gramercy Institute invites the world’s leading banks and credit unions to enter their very best marketing work for the Gramercy Banking and Credit Union Marketing Awards Program. The program exclusively evaluates banking and credit union marketing work according to creative excellence, media planning, marketing strategy, experiential marketing, public relations, and other benchmarks of banks and credit union marketing success.

 

Fostering an inclusive recovery

The Small Business Resource Center builds on Wells Fargo’s strong history of innovative support to small businesses through programs like the Wells Fargo Diverse Community Capital Program (DCC). The DCC is a $175 million program that empowers diverse and women-owned small business owners by collaborating with Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) on capital and training across all 50 states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico. The DCC has contributed $1.6 billion in financing and 1.8 million hours of technical support to diverse entrepreneurs, enabling them to sustain 195,000 jobs in rural and urban markets nationwide.

Wells Fargo also invested $50 million to enable Minority Depository Institutions (MDIs) to stimulate economic growth in Black and African American communities in 2020 and 2021 as a part of the bank’s larger commitment to foster an inclusive recovery. Since that time, 13 MDIs have been named to receive equity investments. Likewise, Wells Fargo and the Black Economic Alliance launched the Black Economic Alliance Entrepreneurs Fund (BEA Fund) to accelerate the growth of Black entrepreneurs and business owners. Wells Fargo has committed to investing $20 million over the next five years and will also contribute its expertise as the BEA Entrepreneur Fund begins working with small business owners and start-ups.

Additionally, Wells Fargo played a huge role in the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) providing approximately 282,000 PPP loans through its 2020 and 2021 lending to support small businesses trying to survive the COVID-19 pandemic. Total lending was nearly $14 billion, helping to keep 1,739,000 Americans employed. The average loan amount for customers was $50,000, the lowest among all large financial institutions*, and 42% of loans were for small businesses in low-to-moderate income neighborhoods, or those historically underserved. To learn more, visit www.wellsfargo.com/together.

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