Comcast Corporation on Tuesday launched Comcast RISE, an initiative created to help strengthen and empower small businesses hard hit by COVID-19.

Comcast RISE stands for “Representation, Investment, Strength and Empowerment.”

The multi-faceted program will help thousands of small businesses over the next three years. It offers grants, marketing and technology upgrades, including media campaigns and connectivity, computer and voice equipment, as well as free marketing insights to all applicants.

A recent study from the National Bureau of Economic Research found that the number of U.S. active business owners dropped from 15 million to 11.7 million from February to April. It also cited that Black-owned small businesses were hardest hit, suffering the steepest decline at 41%, followed by Hispanic and Asian American-owned small businesses.

The program will roll out in waves, and starting Tuesday, U.S.-based Black-owned small businesses can apply for marketing and technology support and equipment to jumpstart and help them sustain business operations. In addition, all small businesses are able to sign up for free marketing insights and resources. The next wave of the program open up eligibility to include Black, Indigenous and People of Color, those next hit hardest by the effects of the pandemic.

For more information, visit www.ComcastRISE.com.

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