Debra Torres, Debra Torres LLC, Miami, FL >

our impact

Entrepreneurs build communities, improving their lives as well as those around them. In fact, small businesses employ 6 out of 10 people and account for 75% of all new jobs created in the US.

Hardworking and innovative, these small business owners are passionate about the services they provide and the neighborhoods they serve, yet one third rely on credit for financing. At Ascendus, we’re committed to empowering these local heroes with the loans and resources they need to compete and thrive.

2021 in numbers

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small businesses supported, nationwide


dollars in loan
capital provided


hours of direct counseling

In the three decades since our founding, we have lent $297 million to 35,890 small businesses nationwide. Read more in our Annual Report.

addressing the need

Our work is focused on addressing systemic challenges to entrepreneurs of color and women.



54% of Black and 41% of Latinx individuals have low to no credit scores, compared to 37% of their white counterparts – impacting their ability to access credit.

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Only 26% of Black business owners and 32% of Latinx business owners receive the full amount of financing sought, compared to 54% for their white counterparts – impacting their ability to launch and grow.

game play


92% of small business owners say mentorship is invaluable to small business success, however less than 40% of Black owned businesses and less than 34% of Latinx owned businesses have access to mentorship – impacting their financial health and ability to stay open.

see how we're addressing this need in our

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