FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Grants are the first in a series of efforts as part of Lowe’s $25 million community commitment to help minority-, veteran- and women-owned small businesses reopen and stay open.
NEW YORK (June 10, 2020)— Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE: LOW) today announced $5 million of its previously announced donation will be distributed by the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), the nation’s largest community development organization, to help minority-, women- and veteran-led, small businesses sustain operations and protect jobs impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The funding is part of Lowe’s more than $50 million in relief efforts since the pandemic began, including a $25 million community donation for small businesses throughout the country previously announced in May. Lowe’s donation through LISC will fuel emergency grants of up to $10,000 in historically undeserved communities, as well as other assistance, to help owners navigate business challenges during the pandemic.
“Lowe’s has been committed to helping minority small business owners – the very backbone of our economy – rebound from the COVID-19 pandemic’s devastating impact,” said Lowe’s President and CEO Marvin R. Ellison. “Helping people make their homes better extends beyond our walls and into our neighborhoods, communities and country. We’re proud these grants will be a first step in helping minority-, veteran- and women-led, small businesses, many of which have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.”
LISC CEO Maurice A. Jones applauded Lowe’s ongoing commitment, noting that it will take a robust investment of public and private resources to spur economic recovery and bridge opportunity gaps that affect the well-being of millions of Americans.
“The need for this kind of relief is overwhelming,” said Jones. He noted that when LISC began offering small business rapid relief grants in April, it saw more than 50,000 applications in just the first four days, and another 200,000 for subsequent funding. Two-thirds of the initial applicants are businesses owned by minorities, veterans and women. Forty percent are in distressed locations, and nearly half have been in business for more than 10 years.
“Too many of our country’s small businesses have not been able to access conventional relief programs,” Jones said. “They need capital, right now, if they are to continue to provide vital goods and services to their communities and help drive long-term recovery and growth. We are grateful to Lowe’s for their strong commitment to doing just that.”
Today’s announcement is the next step of Lowe’s ongoing support of communities during the pandemic, including providing more than $10 million in essential protective products for medical workers, purchasing $1 million worth of flowers from small business growers to be donated and delivered to senior living facilities for Mother’s Day, and providing personal protective equipment (PPE) to minority businesses reopening.
To date, LISC has raised more than $17 million for COVID-19 rapid relief grants and helped 955 organizations access $91 million in federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans—including nearly 200 PPP loans funded by LISC. LISC’s COVID-19 efforts continue to focus on support for small businesses and nonprofits led by women and minorities in economically vulnerable communities.
For more on the LISC-Lowe’s partnership or to apply for a grant, visit (www.LISC.org/lowes).
With residents and partners, LISC forges resilient and inclusive communities of opportunity across America – great places to live, work, visit, do business and raise families. Since 1979, LISC has invested $22 billion to build or rehab more than 419,000 affordable homes and apartments and develop 70.3 million square feet of retail, community and educational space. For more, visit www.lisc.org.
Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE: LOW) is a FORTUNE® 50 home improvement company serving approximately 18 million customers a week in the United States and Canada. With fiscal year 2019 sales of $72.1 billion, Lowe’s and its related businesses operate or service more than 2,200 home improvement and hardware stores and employ approximately 300,000 associates. Based in Mooresville, N.C., Lowe’s supports the communities it serves through programs focused on creating safe, affordable housing and helping to develop the next generation of skilled trade experts. For more information, visit Lowes.com.