Energize Colorado Gap Fund Sends First Checks to Colorado Small Businesses Impacted by COVID-19

Denver, Colo. – This week, the Energize Colorado Gap Fund began awarding grants to Colorado small businesses who have been impacted by the COVID-19 public health emergency. More than 500 businesses were awarded a total of $6.7 million dollars in this first round of funding. Remaining applicants will automatically be considered for awards in the second round of funding for $19 million, which closes October 26, 2020. These awards are made possible by contributions from the CARES Act, the State of Colorado and private donors. The Gap Fund gives priority to small businesses with fewer than 25 full-time employees that owned by minority, women or veterans and those located in rural areas of the state.
“We are so excited that our first round of awards are reaching small businesses across Colorado. Our four priority populations have historically endured difficult access to business financing, and the COVID-19 crisis has expanded the gap dramatically,” said Kent Thiry, Board Chair of the Gap Fund. “The Gap Fund is focused on helping to close that gap. We are thrilled to report that 99 percent of our first-round grant recipients fall into one of those categories. Small businesses like these are the economic engines of Colorado’s economic recovery.”
After round one of applications, the request for assistance from Colorado’s small businesses totaled $135 million. The Gap Fund is continuing to fundraise and opportunities to contribute can be found on the Energize Colorado’s website. The Gap Fund is also celebrating Governor Jared Polis’s announcement of an additional $6 million dollars that have been allocated to the Gap Fund by the State of Colorado. To date the Gap Fund has raised more than $31 million for its grants and loans program and intends to offer more funding to small businesses in 2021 and the years to come.
Round two of the Gap Fund is currently open and will close at 5 p.m. on October 26, 2020 for review, applicants will need to submit before the closure to be considered for the second round of funding. Applicants may request a maximum of $15,000 in grants and $20,000 in loans for a possible combined total of $35,000 in financial assistance. The Gap Fund continues to fundraise to allow for more applicants to receive assistance in further rounds of funding, fueling Colorado’s economic engines through the COVID-19 crisis.
The Gap Fund is made possible by Energize Colorado’s partnership with the State of Colorado, including Colorado General Assembly and the Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT), the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority, community development financial institutions and regional loan fund partners. The Gap Fund’s private funders include Anchor Point Foundation, Gary Community Investments, Gates Family Foundation, Larissa Herda, Pinnacol Assurance, Thiry-O’Leary Foundation, Wendy Lea and Zoma Capital.
More information about the Energize Colorado Gap Fund can be found at www.energizecolorado.com/gap-fund.