Store card provider Synchrony Financial on Wednesday launched a program that offers small businesses grants through community organizations and includes access to digital payment tools and consulting services.
The initiative comes as many small businesses struggle with the economic disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic as well as closures and damage caused by rioting in many cities in the wake of the May 25 killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police.
“We are heartbroken over the multiple crises that have recently hit small businesses across the country,” Neeraj Mehta, chief executive of Synchrony Payment Solutions, said in a statement. “At Synchrony, we realized we needed to do even more to support one another during this time and stand united in support of humanity.”
The company’s Synchrony Foundation has committed $5 million to community-development organizations, $2 million of which will be distributed through the Local Initiatives Support Corp., a national organization that will provide emergency grants to minority- and women-owned businesses. The other $3 million will go to as yet unnamed local organizations “to support long-term small-business recovery over the next three years,” Synchrony said.
Stamford, Conn.-based Synchrony also said its Synchrony Connect for Small Business Web site is offering free advice and expanding its digital capabilities, including e-commerce tools and application programming interfaces. Synchrony’s CareCredit financing service for patients and customers of 180,000 health-care providers and veterinary practices now offers QR-code technology for contactless payments, Synchrony said.