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The Small Business Development Corporation  (SBDC) has announced that a new small business grant program is scheduled to launch Aug. 1. The Energize Colorado Gap Fund will provide more than $25 million in small business loans and grants to boost small businesses impacted by COVID-19.

Come In We are Open Sign at the Salida Fountain and Pharmacy (Photo by Taylor Sumners)

Sole proprietors, businesses, and nonprofits with less than 25 full-time employees can apply for up to a $15,000 grant and a $20,000 loan for a possible combined total of $35,000 in financial assistance.

The grant application should be ready by Aug. 1. Sign up for Energize Colorado’s email list to be alerted when the application opens.

To be eligible for the grant you must be:

  • A small business or enterprise – Colorado sole proprietors and registered small businesses including LLCs, S-Corps, and other business types.
  • A nonprofit – Colorado nonprofits whose mission and/or programs directly support economic development, small businesses, or tourism.

Two other criteria apply:

  • Your business must have fewer than 25 full-time equivalent (FTE) employees. An employer can also use its off-season employee count to qualify.
  • Your business must be able to show you have been impacted by COVID-19 and able to show the economic hardship the business is facing due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The business’s story of hardship plus documents such as bank records, point of sale receipts, profit and loss statements, or other documents can be used to show economic harm.

Any eligible Colorado small enterprise is welcome to apply, with priority given to the following applicants:

  • Majority-owned by black, indigenous, people of color, veterans, or women-owned businesses
  • Businesses in rural areas with populations of less than 50,000 people.
  • Businesses in the tourism sector, and businesses with limited or no access to capital financing or other federal, state or local grants/loans.

How to Apply

The application is being built and the hope is for it to launch around Aug. 1. Check for it in the coming weeks on the  Energize Colorado’s website.