Charter Communications and Hope Credit Union Announce $3 Million Investment to Help Small Businesses Whose Goods and Services Meet Core Needs in Underserved Communities
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Charter Communications, Inc., which operates the Spectrum brand, today announced its Spectrum Community Investment Loan Fund will invest $3 million in the Hope Enterprise Corporation (HOPE), a certified community development financial institution (CDFI) which will provide loans to local businesses that provide goods and services meeting the core needs of financially underserved areas in Kentucky, Tennessee and Alabama. One million dollars of the investment is dedicated for Kentucky communities within Charter’s footprint.
“Spectrum is an important part of every community we serve, and we are invested in the continued success of those communities across our footprint,” said David Ellen, Charter Senior Executive Vice President. “Small business ownership and growth are fundamental to developing and sustaining economic strength and our support to local businesses will provide access to much-needed capital allowing them to thrive. We are excited to be partnering with HOPE and investing in these Kentucky, Tennessee and Alabama communities,” said Ellen.
Charter is also providing a grant to support technical assistance for small business owners and other program costs. Charter’s investment is expected to be combined with additional capital from other sources and to lead to the creation of hundreds of new jobs in underserved communities throughout Kentucky, Tennessee and Alabama.
“Small business is a vital source of jobs and services, particularly in low-income and minority communities,” said HOPE Chief Executive Officer Bill Bynum. “Unfortunately, too often, these communities and their residents lack access to traditional financial services. Charter’s investment in HOPE represents a welcome step towards closing these long standing opportunity gaps.”
Serving over 100,000 financially underserved people across in the Deep South, HOPE strengthens communities, build assets and improves lives by providing access to affordable, financial products and services in AL, AR, LA, MS and TN.
The announcement was made at an event on August 25 at the Norton Healthcare Sports and Learning Center which included several top state and federal officials including Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear who said the program will positively impact financially underserved communities by providing growth capital, creating new jobs and strengthening businesses.
“Investments in our people like the one Charter is making will help us ensure that everyone in Kentucky takes part in the amazing economic momentum we are seeing week after week,” Gov. Andy Beshear said. “Hope is the right name for this investment, as these funds help support the financially underserved by providing new opportunities that can ignite and sustain strong economic growth.”
The Spectrum Community Investment Loan Fund has committed more than $18 million to invest in CDFIs to support small and minority-owned businesses in economically underserved communities within Charter’s 41 state footprint. The Loan Fund has made commitments to CDFIs in 16 states, covering nearly 85% of its footprint. In addition to the loans, each CDFI receives a grant to fund technical assistance programs and professional training for small businesses to help establish sound business practices necessary for long-term growth and continuity. Some of these grants have recently been earmarked to support businesses impacted by COVID-19.
Charter Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ:CHTR) is a leading broadband connectivity company and cable operator serving more than 31 million customers in 41 states through its Spectrum brand. Over an advanced communications network, the company offers a full range of state-of-the-art residential and business services including Spectrum Internet®, TV, Mobile and Voice.
For small and medium-sized companies, Spectrum Business® delivers the same suite of broadband products and services coupled with special features and applications to enhance productivity, while for larger businesses and government entities, Spectrum Enterprise provides highly customized, fiber-based solutions. Spectrum Reach® delivers tailored advertising and production for the modern media landscape. The company also distributes award-winning news coverage, sports and high-quality original programming to its customers through Spectrum Networks and Spectrum Originals. More information about Charter can be found at corporate.charter.com.
About Hope Credit Union
HOPE (Hope Enterprise Corporation, Hope Credit Union and Hope Policy Institute) provides financial services; aggregates resources; and engages in advocacy to mitigate the extent to which factors such as race, gender, birthplace and wealth limit one’s ability to prosper. Since 1994, HOPE has generated more than $3.1 billion in financing that has benefitted nearly 2 million people in Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee. More information about HOPE can be found here.