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Impact Reports

Hello Alice Impact Report: What Military-Connected Owners Need Right Now

There are more than 2.5 million veteran-owned small businesses in the United States, employing more than 5 million workers and adding roughly $1 trillion to the economy. These triumphs are in spite of the unique barriers faced by the military community, including their spouses and family members. "Military spouses encounter more obstacles than their average civilian counterparts," explain Moni Jefferson and Flossie Hall, co-founders of the Association of Military Spouse Entrepreneurs. "The continuum of multiple relocations and work outside of their field sets them hundreds of steps behind the average citizen to build generational wealth. Requiring them to continuously pivot to create financial support, emotional stability, and military readiness, they need to remain resilient to whatever lies ahead." A new Hello Alice report, titled "The Impact of COVID-19 on Military-Connected Business Owners," outlines the unique challenges the military-connected community — including all branches of the U.S. military, active and reserve component members, military spouses, and veterans — has faced throughout 2020. This document is part of a series built on a growing dataset gathered from more than 100,000 applications to our Business for All grant program. To date, 13,103 of those are from military-connected owners primarily spread across the healthcare and wellness, arts and entertainment, and professional services sectors (with a handful of others represented). Roughly 62% of this sample identifies as women. Key data points from the report include: 67% of military-connected entrepreneurs said they were most impacted by reduced sales due to social distancing91% requested emergency grants from the government; 58% said that they needed funding immediately39% of veteran-owned businesses have closed in some capacity due to COVID-19; 83% believe their business will survive, whereas the remaining 17% are uncertain whether or not they will open again The Impact Report supplements these numbers with stories from owners who describe how this year's events have impacted their lives and businesses, including Daunya Byrd and Michael Alton of the Dallas-based Alton's Old School Barbershop. The husband-wife duo opened the business in January 2020 and looked forward to offering living wages to its staff and a great customer experience. Byrd, who joined the U.S. Army as a homeless college student, hoped to launch homeless outreach targeted at high schoolers. Instead, COVID-19 has slashed the shop's revenue to about 15% of normal levels, and every employee has felt the crunch. But that hasn't stopped Alton from using the temporary lockdown to rebrand the business and plan for the future. Bolstered by a COVID-19 Business for All Emergency Grant from Hello Alice and a healthy dose of optimism, the co-founders are forging ahead. "With more knowledge of the virus and safe practices, we are picking up and will be busy again," Alton says with confidence. Download the full Hello Alice Impact Report Here Action Plan: How We're Using This Report Since our launch in 2017, Hello Alice has hosted resources and opportunities for military connected business owners. We are and always will be committed to equal access for these business owners. Our data shows that there needs to be a specific concentrated or conscious effort to support military-connected business owners to overcome the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. We have responded with the most up-to-date opportunities, resources, and step-by-step guides to help military-connected business owners reopen safely and successfully. Together we will emerge from this crisis stronger than before. Finally, Hello Alice recommends the following actions based on our data: More loans and grants. More than half of military-connected entrepreneurs have struggled with finding loans and grantsShop local. 67% of military-connected entrepreneurs have seen a reduction in sales due to social distancingExtend government support. 91% of military-connected entrepreneurs are looking to the government to step up and provide grantsEngage with the following organizations: Association of Military Spouse Entrepreneurs, Business Beyond the Battlefield, Bunker Labs, United States Veterans Chamber of Commerce, and Veteran Women’s Enterprise Center If your company or organization is interested in supporting this important work or gaining insights into your community of business owners, please reach out to [email protected] For media inquiries or interview requests, please contact [email protected]
Nov 9, 2020 • 3 min read
Impact Reports

Hello Alice Impact Report: What COVID-19 Means for Small Business in 2021

According to a new Impact Report from Hello Alice and GGV Capital, small business owners are heading into 2021 with remarkable optimism. This follows a year marked by the coronavirus pandemic, coast-to-coast natural disasters, and extreme racial tensions that ravaged the small business community with challenges posed by a declining economy, social distancing precautions, and employee anxiety and distraction, to name just a few. Recent Hello Alice Impact Reports show that these burdens have been disproportionately felt by members of the New Majority, including Black, LGBTQ+, and Hispanic and Latinx business owners. But based on data compiled from 97,739 founders operating in all 50 states, the majority of small business owners see better days ahead. Key data points from the report include: 83% believe their business will perform better in 2021 than in 202093% plan to hire in 2021 compared to 45% that laid off employees in 202075% intend to spend more on technology in 2021 than in 2020 The Impact Report supplements these numbers with qualitative stories from individuals who describe how this year's events have impacted their lives and businesses. "Our goal is to shine a light on the extraordinary business owners that employ more than 60% of Americans and demonstrate how they are planning to survive and thrive," write the report's authors in the opening letter. "We hope the personal stories inspire optimism in what’s next, and illuminate the tremendous diversity and value found among this country’s small business owners." Download the full Hello Alice Impact Report Here If your company or organization is interested in supporting this important work or gaining insights into your community of business owners, please reach out to [email protected] For media inquiries or interview requests, please contact [email protected]
Oct 23, 2020 • < 1 min read
Impact Reports

Hello Alice Impact Report: What Hispanic and Latinx Business Owners Need Right Now

The Aspen Institute reports that if Hispanic business owners were provided the resources to scale at the same rate as white-owned businesses, “an estimated $1.47 trillion dollars could be added to the economy.” What additional challenges are these owners facing during the COVID-19 pandemic, and how can we all help? Hello Alice decided to take a look at those questions in a new report titled "The Impact of COVID-19 on Hispanic & Latinx Business Owners."   This document is part of a series built on a growing dataset gathered from more than 100,000 applications to our Business for All grant program. To date, 14,566 of those are from Hispanic and Latinx business owners primarily spread across the Professional Business Services, Food & Beverage, Beauty/Self-Care, and Consumer Goods/Retail/E-commerce sectors (with a handful of others represented). Roughly 55% of this demographic identifies as women. What did these business owners have to say? Key takeaways include: 75% of Hispanic and Latinx entrepreneurs said they were most impacted by reduced sales due to social distancing71% said they need emergency grants immediately, with 36% reporting that $10-25k grants would mean business survival after COVID-1939% of Hispanic and Latinx entrepreneurs were impacted by employee anxiety and distraction The report also includes qualitative data, showcasing the individual stories of entrepreneurs struggling to connect with emergency funding and adapting to a changing business environment. "This year we were forced to be extra creative and develop several different options to assist both teachers and families," writes Jessica Sotelo, owner Symphony Strings Music Co. in El Paso, Texas. "Our customers can now rent instruments online, follow detailed instructions on how to size their musicians at home, order accessories for curbside pickup, and schedule any needed appointments. Though technically our sales numbers are not the same as previous years, we count our blessings that we can continue operating." Finally, we gathered input from our partners at Latino Business Action Network and We Are All Human to put the data in a larger context. As Mark L. Madrid of Stanford Latino Entrepreneurship Initiative writes in the report's opening pages: "This powerful research will influence municipal, county, state and federal policy that could mean the difference between life and death of a great number of Latinx businesses across the U.S. and Puerto Rico." Download the full Hello Alice Impact Report Action Plan: How We're Using this Report Hispanic and Latinx business owners make up 13.4% of the Hello Alice community. We are and always will be committed to equal access for these business owners. Our data shows that there needs to be a concentrated and conscious effort to support Hispanic and Latinx business owners to overcome the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. Hello Alice has also launched a Hispanic Business Resource Center to compile resources, how-to guides, and a growing directory of Hispanic businesses across the United States. Finally, Hello Alice recommends the following actions based on our data: Rent relief. 54%of Hispanic and Latinx entrepreneurs have asked the government to step in and assist with rent.Emergency funding, now. 71%of Hispanic and Latinx entrepreneurs say in order for their business to survive they need emergency funding nowBusiness support. 24%of Hispanic and Latinx entrepreneurs have struggled with growing their business. If your company or organization is interested in supporting this important work or gaining insights into your community of business owners, please reach out to [email protected] For media inquiries or interview requests, please contact [email protected]
Oct 6, 2020 • 2 min read
Impact Reports

Hello Alice Impact Report: What Black Business Owners Need Right Now

Featured image: Joe and Celia Ward-Wallace are entrepreneurs who own and operate South LA Cafe in Los Angeles. Early reports estimate that more than 40% of Black-owned businesses will be shuttered due to COVID-19. What are the challenges these owners are facing, and how can we all help? That's one of the key drivers of a new Hello Alice report titled "The Impact of COVID-19 on Black Business Owners." About This Impact Report This document is part of a series built on a growing dataset gathered from more than 100,000 applications to our COVID-19 Business for All Emergency Grant program. To date, 28,995 of those are from Black business owners primarily spread across the Professional Business Services, Beauty/Self-Care, Healthcare/Wellness, and Consumer Goods/Retail/E-commerce sectors (with a handful of others represented). Roughly 69% of this demographic identifies as women. Key Takeaways What did these business owners have to say? Key takeaways include: 65% of Black entrepreneurs said they were most impacted by reduced sales due to social distancing 77% said they need emergency grants immediately, with 34% reporting that $10-25k grants would mean business survival after COVID-19 36% of Black owners reported difficulty securing capital or finding a loan The report also includes qualitative data, showcasing the individual stories of entrepreneurs. In their own words, Black business owners have told us that access to capital is their number one need right now. Finally, we gathered input from our partners at Black & Brown Founders and DivInc to put the data in a larger context. As Deldelp Medina and Aniyia L. Williams of Black & Brown Founders write in the report's opening letter: "Data is not only needed but essential to supporting business creation and success. It gives institutions accountability metrics to measure progress and make lasting structural changes. It allows us to redefine expectations, instead of leaning on antiquated assumptions that were not created for us and set us up for failure." Download the full Hello Alice Impact Report Action Plan: How We're Using this Report This kind of data is a key part of Hello Alice's support for the New Majority of small business owners. And that's why, with the generous support of Visible, UBS, and Stacy's Rise Project we've allocated a portion of emergency grant funding specifically for Black-owned businesses. Hello Alice has also launched a Black-Owned Business Resource Center to compile resources, how-to guides, and a growing directory of Black-owned businesses from across the United States. Finally, Hello Alice recommends the following actions based on our data: More loans and grants. Black business owners overwhelmingly requested access to funding in amounts between $10,000–$50,000. Extend government programs. Demand for rent relief, tax deferrals, and tax waivers was a common theme. Targeted outreach. It’s not enough to express support; industry-specific groups must actively reach out and include Black owners in their networks. Engage with the following organizations: DivInc, digitalundivided, and Black & Brown Founders. For more small business tips and inspiration create a free account on Hello Alice or subscribe to our weekly newsletter If your company or organization is interested in supporting this important work or gaining insights into your community of business owners, please reach out to [email protected] For media inquiries or interview requests, please contact [email protected]
Aug 3, 2020 • 2 min read
Impact Reports

Hello Alice Impact Report: What LGBTQ+ Business Owners Need Right Now

Featured image: Bruno Rose of Pack Leaders ATL is an LGBTQ+ business owner and recipient of the Hello Alice COVID-19 Business for All Emergency Grant. COVID-19 has scrambled all assumptions about small business in 2020. It's time to reassess what exactly small businesses need, and how can we best serve that need. That's one of the key drivers of a new Hello Alice report titled "The Impact of COVID-19 on LGBTQ+ Businesses." About this Impact Report This report, created in partnership with the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC), is part of a series built on a growing dataset gathered from more than 79,000 applications to our COVID-19 Business for All Emergency Grant program. To date, 5,201 of those are from LGBTQ+ business owners primarily spread across the Healthcare/Wellness, Arts/Entertainment/Recreation, and Food/Beverage sectors (with a handful of others represented). Roughly 60% of this applicant demographic identifies as women, 34% as men, 4% as non-binary, 2% as non-conforming, and .9% preferring not to say. Key Takeaways What did these business owners have to say? Key takeaways include: 55% of LGBTQ+ applicants have pivoted their business 59% said they need emergency grants immediately, with 34% reporting that $10-25k grants would mean business survival after COVID-19 76% of LGBTQ+ applicants said they were most impacted by reduced sales due to social distancing The report also includes qualitative data, showcasing the individual stories of grant recipients. In their own words, LGBTQ+ business owners have told us that access to capital is among their most pressing needs right now. Download the full Hello Alice Impact Report here Action Plan: How We're Using this Report This kind of data is a key part of Hello Alice's support for the New Majority of small business owners. And that's why, with the generous support of our partners, we will allocate a portion of emergency grant funding specifically for LGBTQ+ business owners. Hello Alice will also launch an LGBTQ+ Business Resource Center in the coming weeks to compile resources and how-to guides to support this community's unique business needs. Finally, Hello Alice recommends the following actions based on our data: Emphasize digital tools. Social distancing and safety concerns will linger for months. Especially in industries focused on in-person services, businesses must perfect digital sales and marketing channels. More loans and grants. As with other demographics, LGBTQ+ business owners overwhelmingly requested access to funding in amounts between $10,000–$50,000. Targeted outreach. It’s not enough to express support; industry-specific groups must seek out and integrate LGBTQ+ owners in their networks and leadership teams. Engage with the NGLCC. A leading voice in the LGBTQ+ business community, NGLCC exists to influence public policy, develop new clients, and facilitate supplier diversity goals. If your company or organization is interested in supporting this important work or gaining insights into your community of business owners, please reach out to [email protected] For media inquiries or interview requests, please contact [email protected]
Jul 1, 2020 • 2 min read
Impact Reports

Alice Impact Report: What Women-Owned Businesses Really Need

At Alice, we live and breathe data about entrepreneurs. The more Alice knows about a small business owner, the better she can curate their unique path to start and grow their company. Information, like ethnicity and goals, helps Alice to know exactly which resources and opportunities are just right for that individual business owner. The data we collect (and don't worry - we're really not into selling personal data) also allows us to see the big picture of what "New Majority" business owners need to succeed, where there are gaps, and where there are opportunities. With these insights, Alice and our partners are able to improve our programming, services, and communications to support these traditionally underrepresented, but now "New Majority," entrepreneurs: women, people of color, immigrants, LGBTQ+, people with disabilities, the military community, and those living outside of major start up hubs and small business communities. In the first of a series of impact reports, we looked at a cross-section of 10,000 Alice users to find out what women business owners really need. Download the full Alice Impact Report The key takeaways were quite clear: One size does not fit all. There isn't just one model for supporting business owners. Personalization and consideration of intersectionality are vital in designing and delivering programming to support women entrepreneurs.Make it rain. Women business owners are eager for support in marketing-related activities, raising capital, and getting their companies off the ground.Data-driven decisions are where it's at. With better insights into what specific populations of business owners need (even down to the individual level), the ecosystem can do a better job in supporting them, and, ultimately, in giving them the tools, knowledge, and connections, they need to succeed with higher revenue, more job growth, and longer business life spans. Action Plan: How to Use this Report Data without action is like mac without the cheese...and no one wants that. Here are four ways you can use the data in this Alice Impact Report to help women business owners in real life. Better programming and events. Great programs for entrepreneurs aren't one-size-fits-all. To support specific business owners, your programs and services should be designed to meet their specific needs, interests and goals.Myth bust. Don't let anyone tell you that there's a pipeline problem for women-led businesses. There are 12.3 million women-owned firms in the U.S. and everyday, more than 1,800 net new women-owned businesses are added to that list. Organizations, investors, and media can use this data to meet entrepreneurs where they are, with what they need.Targeted Marketing. Women control nearly 2/3 of global household spending, and the buying power of people of color and LGBTQ+ consumers is on the rise. Savvy companies and organizations serving business owners will pay attention to the needs and goals of women business owners, in order to fulfill a very sizable market opportunity.Spread the word and advocate. Support women business owners by sharing this data, talking about their businesses, and buying from them. Tell their stories, invest in them, and mentor them. It makes a difference. Download the full Alice Impact Report Alice is committed to reporting data on traditionally underrepresented business owners to break down barriers to their success. This report is the first of a series of insights on New Majority entrepreneurs that will be released throughout 2019. If your company or organization is interested in supporting this important work or gaining insights into your community of business owners, please reach out to [email protected] For media inquiries or interview requests, please contact [email protected]
Jan 31, 2019 • 2 min read