Resource Summary: Harbor Bank and Cerebro Capital have $50 million in loans for small businesses in Baltimore

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Fintech company from Baltimore Cerebro capital cooperates with the Port Bank of Maryland Provided $50 million in a special loan program for minority-owned small businesses in the Baltimore area.

Using Cerebro’s digital loan matching platform, Harbor Bank aims to make up to $2 million in loans available to small businesses that apply through the Cerebro Capital program. Companies that qualify can expect term sheets within 24 business hours and other free perks. The benefit of going through Cerebro is streamlining the process and getting capital faster to minority entrepreneurs who have traditionally been underserved by the commercial credit market.

“Partnering with Cerebro will allow us to leverage Cerebro’s technology and processes, making it easier and faster to inject capital into the minority business community,” said Harbor Bank SVP and Chief Lending Officer Stanley Arnold said in a statement.

Apply for a loan

Cerebro released a report last year showing commercial lending picking up during the pandemic. This week’s loan announcement also follows the company’s hiring of two new directors of operations.

GoDaddy’s Empower program

Go Daddy does its part to help Baltimore’s micro businesses: The New Web Hosting Company Authorize program is coming Impact Hub Baltimore this month. Expect five cohorts throughout the year for these six-week, in-person learning cohorts focused on web and digital presence.

Micro businesses are the people selling food platters on Instagram, soliciting commissions for art or styling hair, and using a website to book appointments—a hustler by any other name. In the summer of 2021, there were 192,000 online micro businesses in the Baltimore area.

The Empower program offers participants a free GoDaddy domain alongside GoDaddy technical support and expertise. You can register for the free launch event, which will take place at the Impact Hub on the evening of February 17th. Although the first Empower cohort is full, the second cohort is open for registration.

Register for the second cohort

Baltimore Artist Navigator

Artists in Baltimore trying to book venues, find experts in various disciplines, or obtain grants to fund their projects now have an opportunity Baltimore Artist Navigator as a resource.

Supported by non-profit organization for social change Baltimore Corps and designed by EcoMap Technologiesthe platform also offers free one-to-one consultations on available Baltimore resources, connections to organizing partners and other creatives.

Listen

28 days black future

The Baltimore-based organization for social change TOGETHER is running a month-long campaign called 28 days black future, highlighting Black-led groups serving the greater Baltimore area. Its goal is to raise $100,000 to support organizations that have historically been underfunded.

Whether you donate or not, the 28-day campaign is a chance to find 28 black organizations working to transform the lives and outcomes of people in Baltimore every day. You might even learn about a program or mission championed by local Black leaders and social impact entrepreneurs who could either support or inspire your own journey.

Listen

FastForward Resources

John Hopkins University program FastForward offers local entrepreneurs a variety of resources.

  • the ignite fund for Student Entrepreneurs, Hopkins offers students $500 to $1,000 to advance projects throughout the year.
  • the FastForward U summer incubator for students accepting admissions until March 1st. Participants will receive free accommodation and a $1,250 stipend for additional support.
  • the Challenge innovation & entrepreneurship for alumni and students offers multiple awards ranging from $10,000 or more for projects applying by March 1st.
  • HopStart: Hopkins New Venture Challenge is looking for the best business plan. Student companies have the opportunity to win up to $5,000 in prize money.

Donte Kirby is a 2020-2022 corps member for Report for America, an initiative of the Groundtruth Project that connects young journalists with local newsrooms. This position is supported by the Robert W. Deutsch Foundation. -30-
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