December 2nd, 2021 – The Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) provided small businesses with an SBA-backed loan to keep them open and keep their workforce employed during the COVID-19 crisis. Ascendus was approved as a PPP intermediary lender during both the first and second draws of the program. In total, Ascendus provided 2,300 small business owners with $33 million in PPP forgivable capital through the program.
Importantly, Ascendus’s loans went to those most in need of relief and recovery support:
- Ascendus’s average PPP loan size was just $14,000, compared with $101,000 nationally – Ascendus continues to extend critical resources to the smallest businesses nationwide. 70% of clients were self-employed individuals or independent contractors.
- 70% of Ascendus PPP borrowers were entrepreneurs of color, including 60% who are Black or Latinx – populations who have borne the brunt of COVID-19 health and economic consequences.
- Half of Ascendus PPP borrowers were immigrants or had English as a second language – individuals less likely to have access to the technical assistance and support to navigate government programming.
- Over half of Ascendus PPP loans were provided to businesses within the administrative services, transportation or childcare industries.
Ascendus will continue to support clients as they navigate loan forgiveness.
“It has definitely helped us out with our main expenses, specifically our employees. It’s given us the opportunity to provide for them in a time like this. It’s impacted lives and families.” -Martha Castillo, Diego Castillo Jr., and Diego Castillo Sr., owners of Arepasmania in Hollywood, FL.
“Ascendus helped me through each step of the application, guiding me and really helping me out.” – Anthony Acevedo, owner of Non-Medical Emergency Transportation in Cambridge, New York
“The loan literally saved us. I hadn’t been able to get any other grants. I was able to use that between payroll and getting up to date with the rent.” -Tiffany Diaz, owner of My First Steps Enrichment Program in the Bronx, NY.
Ascendus believes in the bold vision of creating financial ascension for those who have been systemically excluded from financial opportunity. For over 30 years, we’ve provided small business owners – primarily BIPOC, women and immigrants – with the tools to move up, improve their lives, care for their families, and contribute to their communities. We’ve placed over $200 million into the hands of 24,000 small businesses through our programs in New York, Massachusetts, Florida and nationally. Our history includes a long track record as an economic first responder in times of disaster, dating back to the September 11th attacks in downtown Manhattan, and continuing through Superstorm Sandy in 2012, Hurricane Irma in 2017, and most recently, the COVID-19 pandemic. More at ascendus.org.