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Honeywell Launches $2 million Fund to Help Charlotte Small Businesses Adapt to COVID-19

Priority given to minority-, women- and veteran-owned businesses seeking grants 

As COVID-19 continues to prompt sweeping changes to the ways we live and work, Honeywell is propelling a new program designed to help Charlotte small business owners make the changes they need to thrive.

Charlotte’s Center City neighborhoods are filled with storefront businesses that make it a vibrant locale – and an essential part of the city’s economy.

The Charlotte Center City Small Business Innovation Fund will provide grants of up to $40,000 to small businesses to help them innovate in the face of social distancing and other changes.

Here are three things to know about the fund:

1. Who is making the grants?

The fund is a partnership between Honeywell, Charlotte Center City Partners, and Foundation For The Carolinas. Honeywell is investing $2 million in seed money to get the program started.

2. Who is eligible for a grant?

Owners of businesses with fewer than 50 employees and a physical storefront within a two-mile radius from the intersection of Trade St. and Tryon St. are eligible to apply.

Priority will be given to minority-, women- and veteran-owned businesses seeking grants.

3. What kind of ideas are most likely to merit a grant from the fund?

Applicants will outline proposed innovations that will enable them to adapt their business to new realities shaped by COVID-19. For some, it may mean altering the layout of their store to accommodate social distancing. For others, a grant could help with procuring equipment for mobile checkout or marketing expertise for a new service or line of products.

Applicants will detail costs and their readiness to implement the ideas, as well as agree to share their lessons so others may learn from their experience.

“Small businesses contribute greatly to Charlotte’s growth and vibrancy, and Honeywell is proud to support them in overcoming the challenges posed by the COVID-19 crisis,” said Honeywell Chairman and CEO Darius Adamczyk.

Learn more about the fund, visit www.charlottecentercity.org/innovationfund.