FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, March 25, 2021
CITY OF NEW YORK PARTNERS WITH MASTERCARD TO HIGHLIGHT BLACK WOMEN-OWNED SMALL BUSINESSES ACROSS THE CITY
NEW YORK - Today, the NYC Department of Small Business Services (SBS) Commissioner Jonnel Doris and Mastercard announced “NYC | In Solidarity", a new campaign that will enable New Yorkers to virtually shop, share, and support Black women-owned small businesses across New York City.
“NYC | In Solidarity” aims to elevate the visibility of these businesses through videos and editorial content highlighting NYC manufacturers, creators, artists, and service providers. Select businesses’ products will also be featured on Mastercard’s Priceless® platform, where consumers can explore and purchase local experiences, products, and services provided by Black women-owned small businesses.
This campaign builds on Mastercard’s support of SBS’s Black Entrepreneurs NYC (BE NYC) and Women Entrepreneurs NYC (WE NYC) initiatives, which provide the resources and support unique to Black and women entrepreneurs respectively, as they start and grow thriving businesses.
“Now more than ever, it is critical to support our women-owned businesses recover from the pandemic," said J. Philip Thompson, Deputy Mayor for Strategic Policy Initiatives. "The “NYC | In Solidarity” campaign will provide visibility for these Black women-owned businesses and serve as inspiration for future women entrepreneurs.”
“Black-owned businesses and small businesses add to our city’s diversity, dynamism, and economic strength, and we launched BE NYC to provide them with the resources they need to navigate the challenges they face,” said Jonnel Doris, Commissioner of the NYC Department of Small Business Services. “These businesses chose to invest in our city and create jobs here. Now, it’s our turn to support them.”
While Black women are the fastest-growing demographic of entrepreneurs, only 0.5% own their own businesses, representing a rate that is 24 times lower than white male founders. For this reason, SBS and Mastercard have partnered on this campaign to support and highlight these inspirational and successful Black women entrepreneurs.
“Black women have been among the most industrious, resourceful, and successful business owners for generations,” said Kenneth Ebie, Executive Director of Black Entrepreneurs NYC. “We are excited to partner with Mastercard through this campaign to support Black-women-owned businesses and help tell a more inclusive story about what a successful entrepreneur looks like.”
“Black women are the fastest-growing demographic of entrepreneurs, but face systemic barriers when starting and operating a business,” said Diana Franco, Executive Director of Women Entrepreneurs NYC. “The NYC | In Solidarity campaign provides a platform to share inspiring stories of Black women entrepreneurs, who despite these barriers, have started successful small businesses.”
“The past year has cast a much-needed spotlight on the lack of digitization, slow and inefficient payment methods, and limited access to working capital that many Black-owned businesses struggle with within the U.S.,” said Miguel Gamino, Executive Vice President, Enterprise Partnerships and Head of Global Cities, Mastercard. “This campaign aims to elevate Black female small business owners who are overcoming disparate obstacles to maintain and grow their businesses in an era of increased online commerce.”
“Now more than ever, having a digital presence is critical for small business owners. Mastercard’s Digital Doors program was developed to address this need and provide the resources to help businesses get online and securely digitally transform their business,” said Ginger Siegel, North America Small Business Lead at Mastercard. “Through an interactive Digital Doors webinar series, we are joining BE NYC in its efforts to help ensure that Black business leaders have access to digital tools needed to sustain and grow their business.”
“Women are the economic pulse of New York City and the key to lifting thousands of families out of poverty. More women need to feel confident that their next career can be a thriving business venture and the gateway to intergenerational wealth,” said Tamecca Seril, Chief Executive Officer, FOLKUS. “SBS's WE NYC is helping to make this a reality for women at every stage of the entrepreneurial journey -- from business formation to business expansion. WE NYC -- is filling in the resource gap, connecting women to priceless resources and mentors and shifting the paradigm of "learning on the job".
"I have utilized almost every SBS service offered," said Roniesia Godfrey, founder, and CEO of Ethos21. "They have a plethora of resources and programs that you can take for free that have been instrumental in starting and growing my business."
The “NYC | In Solidarity” campaign was produced and directed by New York-based content creator and certified M/WBE, Marcus K. Jones, who was sourced and funded by Mastercard.
To learn more about the campaign, visit priceless.com/nyc-small-biz.
About BE NYC
BE NYC, launched by the NYC Department of Small Business Services in 2019, is a first-of-its-kind model in a major American city to help address the racial wealth gap by empowering Black entrepreneurs. Through strategic public-private partnerships and innovative programs, BE NYC provides pathways to achieve systemic change by providing equitable access to financing, strengthening professional networks and advice, scaling Black businesses for long-term success, and preparing Black entrepreneurs for opportunities in high-growth industries. For more information, visit nyc.gov/benyc.
About WE NYC
WE NYC, launched by the NYC Department of Small Business Services in 2015, delivers tailored, research-based programs for women entrepreneurs to better connect them to the resources, education, and community they need to flourish. WE NYC services are at no-cost and open to all women throughout the five boroughs. Since its launch, WE NYC has provided over 28,000 services to more than 16,000 women entrepreneurs in NYC. For more information, visit we.nyc.
Mastercard is a global technology company in the payments industry. Our mission is to connect and power an inclusive, digital economy that benefits everyone, everywhere by making transactions safe, simple, smart, and accessible. Using secure data and networks, partnerships, and passion, our innovations and solutions help individuals, financial institutions, governments, and businesses realize their greatest potential. Our decency quotient, or DQ, drives our culture and everything we do inside and outside of our company. With connections across more than 210 countries and territories, we are building a sustainable world that unlocks priceless possibilities for all. Visit www.mastercard.com for more information.
About the NYC Department of Small Business Services (SBS)
SBS helps unlock economic potential and create economic security for all New Yorkers by connecting New Yorkers to good jobs, creating stronger businesses, and building vibrant neighborhoods across the five boroughs. For more information on all SBS services, go to nyc.gov/sbs, call 311, and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.