Comcast RISE Awards More Than 50 Small Black-Owned Chicago-Area Businesses with Marketing and Technology Resources

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Multi-year Program Opens Eligibility to Small Businesses Owned by Black, Indigenous and People of Color

Comcast announced on January 17, 2020, more than 50 Black-owned small businesses in the Chicago area have been selected among the first round of Comcast RISE award recipients. The Chicago-area recipients are among more than 700 businesses nationally that will receive consulting, media and creative production services from Effectv, the advertising sales division of Comcast Cable, or technology upgrades from Comcast Business, based on their specific needs.

Comcast RISE, which stands for “Representation, Investment, Strength and Empowerment,” is a multi-year, multi-faceted initiative launched in October to help strengthen small businesses hard hit by COVID-19. The first phase of Comcast RISE focused on U.S. Black-owned small businesses, those hardest hit by the pandemic, according to a recent study from the National Bureau of Economic Research. Comcast RISE brings together two of the company’s brands — Comcast Business and Effectv, both with expertise in the small business space — to empower business owners with the expertise and resources needed to navigate the economic effects of the pandemic.

“What a pleasant surprise to be chosen as not only a finalist, but one of the first Comcast RISE winners!” said Alicia Goodwin, founder and owner of Chicago-based Lingua Nigra, which makes jewelry using rich textures, vibrant colors and meaningful design. “With Comcast’s help, my hope is to be able to increase visibility of the Lingua Nigra jewelry brand and attract more jewelry lovers!”

Goodwin recently appeared on The Kelly Clarkson Show with three other Comcast RISE winners.

The next phase of Comcast RISE opens up eligibility to include Black as well as other BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color)-owned, small businesses. They can apply through February 7, 2021, at www.ComcastRISE.com.

“We created Comcast RISE to partner with small businesses and give them access to tools to help them survive the pandemic and thrive. As we’ve gone through the selection process, it’s been so powerful to hear these business owners’ stories and see the tangible ways that we can help grow their businesses and impact their communities,” said Teresa Ward-Maupin, SVP for Digital and Customer Experience at Comcast Business. “I could not be more pleased to open this program to the entire BIPOC community and continue this positive momentum.”

“Fueling the success of small businesses is what our business is all about. We partner with them to better understand their needs and what we can do to help them grow. Our success is their success,” said James Lavallee, Vice President, Sales Marketing, Effectv. “That’s why, at a time when so many in our small business communities are struggling, it’s incredibly humbling to be able to give back and share our knowledge and resources with those hardest hit by the pandemic. We want to help our partners and communities rise.”

Comcast RISE consists of the following components:

A media and technology resources program: This pillar combines Effectv’s renowned media platform and marketing expertise, its award-winning creative agency, Mnemonic, and state-of-the-art technical support from Comcast Business to help small businesses foster and elevate growth. Recipients will receive help with their marketing, media campaigns and creation of 30-second commercials, as well as equipment and technology upgrades, including:

  • Consulting: Advertising and marketing consultations with local Effectv marketing, research and creative teams to gain insights on how to grow your business.
  • Media: A linear TV media campaign to run over a 90-day period.
  • Creative Production: Turnkey :30 TV commercial production for their businesses.
  • Technology Makeovers: Computer equipment and Internet, Voice and Cybersecurity services for up to a 12-month period. (Taxes and other fees may still apply for tech makeover services.)
  • Business resources to help with curated content: Comcast has launched the Comcast RISE destination complete with aggregated small business news, tips, insights and more on the X1 platform. The destination is designed to help businesses grow by empowering them through education, inspiration and entertainment. Just say “Comcast RISE” into the X1 voice remote.
  • Grants: In 2021, Comcast will be awarding monetary grants for U.S.-based small and diverse businesses that have been in operations for three to five years.
  • Comcast RISE is part of a larger $100 million Diversity, Equity and Inclusion initiative that Comcast  launched this summer. In June, Comcast NBCUniversal announced the development of a comprehensive, multiyear plan to allocate $75 million in cash and $25 million in media over the next three years to fight injustice and inequality against any race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation or ability.

Visit  www.ComcastRISE.com to apply, for more information and the latest updates.

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