Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month

by | May 19, 2022 | Resources | 0 comments

In May, we mark Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month. This is a month during which we recognize the amazing contributions of Asian Americans in Pacific Islander Americans to this country. Asian Americans and Pacific Islander Americans have helped make this nation what it is today in all facets of life- from culture to history to politics and beyond. This is why we take the time to celebrate their incredible achievements in May.

One company takes explicitly it a step further. This Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month, UPS will go above and beyond to help promote AAPI-owned businesses. Their initiative, called Proudly Unstoppable, seeks to offer eligible businesses grants for up to $5000. There is a total of $150,000 being disbursed to various AAPI-owned businesses throughout the United States. The grant program runs throughout May.

Eligibility for Proudly Unstoppable Grants

So how can Asian American businesses and Pacific Islander American businesses take advantage of this UPS program? First off, they must meet specific eligibility criteria. They have to be a for-profit-owned business located in the US. At least 51% of the company has to be AAPI-owned. They cannot have more than three locations associated with their national brand. Finally, UPS wants to help those businesses that were negatively impacted during the pandemic and seemingly continue to struggle.

Beyond assisting Asian American-owned and Pacific Islander-owned businesses with this grant program, UPS also spotlights AAPI-owned businesses during Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month. If you go on the UPS website, you will find inspiring stories and motivational highlights.

How Did the UPS AAPI Owned Business Program Get Started?

In 2021, UPS launched this program for the first time. During this inaugural year, they awarded 27 $5000 grants. The winning businesses included health and wellness brands, electrical companies, pet-based companies, artists, and those in the food and beverage industry. As long as a business meets the criteria, they are eligible to apply for this UPS grant program, regardless of industry.

How did COVID impact AAPI Owned Businesses?

Those companies owned and operated by Asian Americans and Pacific Islander Americans were the hardest hit during the pandemic. Because of hate crimes and volatile rhetoric, these business owners face challenges that entrepreneurs should not have to face.

A recent survey suggests that AAPI-owned businesses are having a more difficult time recovering than those owned by white, Hispanic, or black business owners. This is another reason we need programs such as the Proudly Unstoppable initiative. And particularly right now, with inflation rates going through the roof and other such issues plaguing smaller companies, this program is essential.

First Union Lending Helps Small Businesses

We have worked with numerous small business owners from every walk of life. We understand how difficult things are right now. And we are invested in offering the type of support that will enable small companies throughout the United States to get back on their feet and even potentially grow.

Loan Products We Offer

  • Short-term loans. As the name suggests, these lump-sum loans are repayable within a three-month to two-year period. So, for example, if your business needs cash for something unexpected, a short-term loan might be the way to go.
  • Lines of credit. Among the most popular financing options, business lines of credit enable companies to access money as they need it. You only pay interest on the sum you draw from the line of credit, not on the approved total amount. And once you do pay that money back, it is again there for you to use.
  • Merchant cash advances. Using your projected future sales as a benchmark, these loans give you the money you need from those sales upfront. Then, you will pay it back with a percentage of all credit card sales. You will pay more than if sales are slower when sales are up.
  • Equipment loans. Another prevalent form of commercial funding, equipment loans, can be used to buy any type of equipment necessary for you to run your business. We give you money for what you need, from heavy machinery to IT equipment to manufacturing equipment.

Even if your credit score is less than ideal, we might still have a financing option for you. That is because we take a big-picture approach to business lending. You are more than just one score or one number. First Union Lending wants to know about you and what value you bring. We want to establish long-term relationships with the companies we partner with. Let us help you make your business dream a reality! Call today.