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Small Business Relief Fund

Small Business Relief Fund

Funding opportunities to support businesses impacted by COVID-19

Small business and nonprofit relief application period closed

There are no current opportunities for Hennepin County Small Business Relief funds available at this time. 

 
The application period for the Small Business and Nonprofit Relief Fund (Round 5) closed on January 14, 2021 at noon.
 

An interactive tool that displays the impacts of small business relief funding through March 5, including 5,980 small business relief grants totaling more than $62.3 million can be found on Hennepin County’s Small Business Relief Fund impacts page.

On this page: 

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Small Business and Nonprofit Relief Fund (Round 5) update

The application period for the Hennepin County Small Businesses and Nonprofit Relief Fund (Round 5) closed on January 14, 2021 at noon.  Processing of applications for Round 5 is now complete and all funds have been committed.  

In total, Round 5 provided 1832 grants totaling $24,635,000 million to Hennepin County Small Businesses and Nonprofits. 

The total funding allocated for Round 5 by the Minnesota Legislature for Hennepin County businesses and nonprofits was approximately $24.6 million. In total, $44 million was requested from small business and nonprofit applicants during Round 5. With the funding available, all eligible first-time Hennepin County grant recipients received funds, and approximately 20% of prior Hennepin County grant recipients received additional funds. Over 1,400 businesses that had received a prior Hennepin County grant were not funded in Round 5. 

In Round 4, held in November and December 2020, federal CARES resources were sufficient to fund 76% of eligible applicant businesses by end of 2020. The additional $24.6 million in state funding made it possible for 100% of businesses that met eligibility criteria in Round 4 to receive funds by end of January 2021.

If you applied for Round 5 by the deadline of January 14, 2021 at noon, and cannot find a record of communication from Hennepin County or Round 5 grant administrator, NextStage, please contact economic.development@hennepin.us

Small business relief funding and selection process

The Hennepin County Board of Commissioners committed CARES Act and state resources to provide sufficient funding for at least one grant to all eligible businesses who completed applications and required paperwork for Hennepin County's five rounds of small business relief funding between May 2020 and March 2021.

In all application rounds, businesses were eligible based on criteria such as business size, revenue impacts due to COVID-19, and eligible expenses. Eligible businesses for each round were processed in randomized order to ensure fair access. In some rounds, priority was given to applicants that had not received funding through a prior Hennepin County SBR round. Geographic location within the county, race, ethnicity, and gender identity were not factors in determining eligibility or prioritization.

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Prior rounds of Hennepin County Small Business Relief funding 

Since May 2020, Hennepin County has approved $69.4 million in small business relief grants through five funding rounds:

  • Round 1 (April 27-May 8): Grants up to $10,000 for businesses with 1-20 employees
  • Round 2 (May 19-29): Grants up to $5,000 for self-employed entrepreneurs
  • Round 3 (July 30-August 12): Grants up to $15,000 for businesses with 1-50 employees
  • Round 4 (November 23-December 1): Grants up to $15,000 for restaurants, bars, fitness, and entertainment venues with up to 100 employees
  • Round 5 (January 4-14): Grants up to $15,000 for small businesses and nonprofits that earn revenue similar to businesses with up to 150 employees

Connecting to resources, interpreter services

Connect with a small business consultant at elevatebusinesshc.com. 

To learn more about other resources and initiatives in Hennepin County, please visit the Hennepin County’s resources for small businesses impacted by COVID-19 page.

To receive additional updates, sign up for our Community and Economic Development: Business Support newsletter.

Hennepin County offers free interpreter services upon request. Please email economic.development@hennepin.us.

Para asistencia / economic.development@hennepin.us / Yog xav tau kev pab / economic.development@hennepin.us / Hadii aad Caawimaad u baahantahay / economic.development@hennepin.us