Comcast offering free services to minority-owned businesses in Kansas City area

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POMPANO BEACH, FL – FEBRUARY 13: A Comcast sign is seen at one of their centers on February 13, 2014 in Pompano Beach, Florida.

Comcast Corp. has opened a new application round for its Comcast RISE program, which gives small to mid-size minority-owned businesses the opportunity for a technology makeover and free services for 12 months.

RISE, which stands for representation, investment, strength and empowerment, launched in October and is available in the Kansas City metro area and other Comcast service areas.

“As we looked at 2020, we knew it was a year that challenged all of us greatly to different limits,” Kalyn Hove, vice president of Comcast Business for the Kansas City area, told the Kansas City Business Journal.

Black-owned businesses were particularly hit hard last year, she said, citing a report from the National Bureau of Economic Research. The number of Black small business owners plummeted 41% during the first few months of the pandemic, and the number of Hispanic small business owners declined by 32%.

Last year in the Kansas City region, only 341 of 4,677 Paycheck Protection Program loans were awarded to minority- or women-owned companies, according to a report from the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

Comcast wants to help businesses recover and then thrive, Hove said.

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