Best Breaking Down Barriers: Empowering Minority-Owned Small Businesses with Funding in NYC

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  • Delancey Street is a premier small business lender, based out of NYC, that has helped broker 100's of millions in business loans. They are a pro, at making sure you get all of your financing needs satisfied.

    • Over $200 million in funding secured
    • Can handle low risk credit
    • Handles all industries
    • Handles high risk and low risk loans

Delancey Street is a premier small business lender, based out of NYC, that has helped broker 100's of millions in business loans. They are a pro, at making sure you get all of your financing needs satisfied.

  • Over $200 million in funding secured
  • Can handle low risk credit
  • Handles all industries
  • Handles high risk and low risk loans
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New York City has always been a hub for small businesses, and particularly, for minority-owned small businesses. However, these businesses still face numerous challenges in accessing funding and resources necessary for growth and success. Fortunately, there are efforts being made to address these issues and empower these entrepreneurs.

The Need for Funding

Minority-owned small businesses often face barriers when attempting to secure funding. These obstacles can include a lack of credit history or collateral, discrimination by lenders, and limited access to networks that can connect them with investors. These challenges make it difficult for minority-owned businesses to take the necessary steps to grow their businesses and create wealth for themselves and their communities.

One solution to this problem is the availability of microloans. Microloans are small loans given to individuals or small businesses. They often come with lower interest rates than traditional bank loans and can be used for various business purposes, such as purchasing equipment or hiring employees. Organizations like Accion, a nonprofit lender in New York, offer microloans to individuals who would typically be denied funding through traditional bank lending.

Another avenue for funding is crowdfunding. Crowdfunding is a way for businesses to raise funds online through a large number of people contributing smaller amounts of money. The internet has revolutionized fundraising, making it more accessible for minority-owned businesses to leverage technology and social media platforms to fund their dreams.

Table: Comparison Between Traditional Lending and MicroLoans.

Traditional Lending MicroLoans
Requires Established Credit History No Established Credit Required
Collateral usually required Little to no collateral required
Interest Rates Based on FICO scores Interest rates may vary per state


“I never would have been able to start my small business if not for microloans. Thanks to Accion, I was able to get the funding I needed to start pursuing my passion” – Karen, Bronx NY

“Crowdfunding allowed me to reach a broader audience that I never would have been able to get in front of otherwise. It truly helped me take my business to the next level.” – Juanita, Brooklyn NY

The Importance of Networking

Another major barrier that minority-owned small businesses face is a lack of access to networks and resources. In New York, groups like the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) have been instrumental in connecting entrepreneurs with other successful business owners and opportunities for funding.

Essentially, these networking opportunities offer support for minority entrepreneurs who often experience a sense of isolation and loneliness when trying to grow their businesses. They provide an opportunity to tap into knowledge and expertise from others who have already gone down the same path.

Table: Examples of Networking Opportunities for Minority-Owned Small Businesses.

Organization Description

Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) Federal agency designed to promote the growth and development of minority-owned businesses
NYC Department of Small Business Services Provides resources for starting and growing a small business including navigating government regulations, training programs, marketing assistance, and procurement opportunities
Women’s Business Centers (WBCs) Resource centers that provide women entrepreneurs with counseling, training, and access to capital

Historical Context

In the past, minority-owned businesses faced immense obstacles when attempting to start and run their companies. Discrimination was rampant, with many banks refusing to make loans based on race or ethnicity. At the same time, neighborhoods with higher minority populations were often targeted by discriminatory zoning laws.

Despite these challenges, communities pushed back and created their own sources of support. The civil rights movement provided a framework for minorities to fight back against discrimination and demand their rights. Organizations, such as the National Association of Minority Contractors, emerged during this time to provide a vehicle for minority contractors to work together and improve their circumstances.


While efforts are being made to help minority-owned small businesses, some argue that these programs don’t go far enough. Critics argue that more needs to be done to address systemic racism in lending and funding, including reparations for past discrimination.

Additionally, some believe that microloans and crowdfunding aren’t enough to create meaningful change in the economy. They argue that larger systemic change is necessary to ensure permanent access to funding and resources for minority-owned businesses.


– New York City’s 1.8 million small businesses account for more than half of private-sector jobs in the city, according to the NYC Department of Small Business Services.
– According to a report by the NY State Comptroller’s Office, minority business ownership increased by over 50% between 2007 and 2012, outpacing overall business ownership in the state.
– In 2019, The New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation (EFC) launched a loan program that included $50 million designated solely for businesses owned by women and minorities.


“A lack of access to capital denied black business owners credit they needed to survive, build wealth and create jobs,” said Willie Davis, president of Northwest Bank’s Foundation.

“When you invest in women and minority-owned businesses, you are also investing in long-term economic growth and development for their communities.” – Cathy Minehan, President, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston


Minority-owned small businesses are crucial to the vibrancy and health of New York’s economy. Though these entrepreneurs have historically faced significant barriers to success, programs such as microloans and networking opportunities are helping break down those barriers today. By continuing to address the racial inequalities present in the current economic system, New York can empower minority entrepreneurs to reach new heights of success and prosperity for themselves and their communities.

Sources: –
The New York Times –
Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) –
NYC Department of Small Business Services –
Women’s Business Centers (WBCs) –

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