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Spectrum officials gather for a special Small Business Week event

News and ViewsApril 29, 2024

Spectrum Small Business Support Builds Stronger Communities

This National Small Business Week, Spectrum Celebrates Local Businesses Across its Service Area

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During National Small Business Week (April 29-May 4), Spectrum is honoring the impact of small businesses as the economic backbone of the communities where its employees and customers live and work. Since 2020, Spectrum, one of the nation’s leading internet, video and voice providers, has committed $185 million to support more than 427,000 small businesses through initiatives from free advertising campaigns and capital access to meaningful partnerships with diverse-owned suppliers and vendors across its 41-state service area.

“Small businesses drive economic growth, create jobs and foster a sense of community,” said Rahman Khan, Group Vice President of Community Impact for Charter Communications, which operates the Spectrum brand. “Not only do we deliver affordable connectivity products to neighborhood coffee shops, restaurants and stores, but we also provide them with business tools and resources to help them succeed over the long term.”

National Small Business Week 2024: Bridging Gaps and Building Networks

Spectrum kicked off its National Small Business Week celebrations in Charlotte earlier this month, when the company welcomed dozens of small business owners for an evening of networking with nonprofits, local elected officials, Spectrum leadership and each other, and to learn about the different resources Spectrum offers.

Spectrum also used the occasion to announce a $10,000 donation to the National Institute of Minority Economic Development (the Institute), a nonprofit firm based in Durham, North Carolina that provides training, support and access to capital for diverse businesses.

“Our mission is to strengthen the asset base of diverse populations through policy, education and economic opportunities,” said Kevin Price, CEO of the Institute. “Spectrum’s generous donation will be used to provide scholarships for small business owners to attend our 2024 Executive Networking Conference, August 5-7 in Pinehurst, North Carolina, which will focus on how diverse businesses can use technology to stay competitive and thrive.”

Left to right: Rahman Khan, Charter Communications Group Vice President of Spectrum Community Impact, Kevin J. Price, President and CEO of the National Institute of Minority Economic Development, and Nasif Majeed, North Carolina Representative
Left to right: Rahman Khan, Charter Communications Group Vice President of Spectrum Community Impact, Kevin J. Price, President and CEO of the National Institute of Minority Economic Development, and Nasif Majeed, North Carolina State Representative.

How Spectrum’s Small Business Support Makes a Big Community Impact

  • "Pay It Forward," an initiative by Spectrum Reach – the advertising sales business of Spectrum – has helped more than 2,000 small businesses across 36 states and invested over $50 million since it began in 2021. Through the program, underserved businesses receive $15,000 worth of free advertising and creative services, which can help make or break a burgeoning small business. One recipient, GreaterHealth Pharmacy & Wellness in St. Louis, saw a 23% jump in calls from people looking to transfer their prescriptions after its free “Pay It Forward” commercial aired on local TV.
  • Spectrum’s Supplier Diversity program connects diverse-owned businesses with opportunities to work with Spectrum. Since 2023, Spectrum has spent more than $1 billion annually on supplier diversity, ensuring its network of vendors and suppliers reflects the diversity of the communities it serves. As Spectrum continues to expand and upgrade its network to bring high-speed internet to 1.3 million unserved customer locations in 24 states, it actively recruits diverse-owned suppliers to provide labor services and materials.
  • The Spectrum Community Investment Loan Fund provides loans through community development financial institutions (CDFIs) to underserved small businesses whose goods and services help meet core needs in their towns and cities. These include Raza Development Fund, which used Spectrum’s $3.2 million commitment for loans to Latino-owned local businesses in California, Florida, Ohio and Texas. To date, the loan fund has committed more than $29 million in loan capital, capacity grants and in-kind contributions to 15 CDFIs in 16 states covering nearly 85% of Charter’s footprint. This investment has helped finance $59 million in loans to more than 1,200 small businesses, creating or retaining over 5,000 jobs.
  • Spectrum Business serves more than 2.2 million small and medium-sized businesses nationally with affordable products such as Spectrum One for Business, which integrates reliable and secure Spectrum Internet, Mobile and Advanced WiFi so small businesses can connect with their customers and compete globally as well as locally. Spectrum Business’ “Let's Get Started” initiative also offers free guidance, educational resources and mentorship programs to help the next wave of small businesses turn their entrepreneurial dreams into reality.

"Local, neighborhood businesses are so important, bringing vitality to our towns and cities, but need help to succeed in a challenging and competitive market,” said Mr. Khan. “During National Small Business Week, we’re highlighting our continued support for small businesses, from capital to connectivity, to ensure they are ready for today and tomorrow."