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Russell Innovation Center for Entrepreneurs (RICE) Secures $2 Million Investment from Truist to Continue Accelerating Black Entrepreneurship in Atlanta USA – English USA – English

ATLANTA, Feb. 29, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — The Russell Innovation Center for Entrepreneurs (RICE) is thrilled to announce a $2 million grant awarded by Truist Foundation and two Truist Trusteed Foundations to advance RICE’s expansion efforts and elevate Atlanta-based Black entrepreneurs both within the RICE community and beyond. The generous support from Truist will continue to increase mentorship, deliver essential business resources, and expand access to valuable opportunities for capital and financial education.

Research conducted by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce highlights that nearly 71% of Black entrepreneurs depend on personal and family savings for financing. The disparity in access to capital is further exacerbated by the lower levels of family wealth among Black families. Through acceleration and access to tangible resources, RICE has already made strides to close this gap through Black entrepreneurship as its Stakeholders have created hundreds of jobs, generated more than $100 million in revenue and driven $450 million in total economic activity. 

“RICE is honored to receive this investment from Truist Foundation and the Truist Trusteed Foundations, which will significantly bolster our mission to support Black entrepreneurs in unprecedented ways,” said Jay Bailey, president and CEO of RICE. “Through this collaboration, we are poised to drive economic impact and growth.”

By partnering, RICE and Truist are reshaping collaboration and empowerment in the entrepreneurial realm. This joint endeavor underscores the importance of initiatives that transcend conventional boundaries to foster a more inclusive and dynamic entrepreneurial ecosystem.

“As Black History Month comes to a close, we are honored to celebrate the success of RICE and invest in a more inclusive business ecosystem in Atlanta,” said Lynette Bell, president of Truist Foundation. “RICE is known for driving entrepreneurs and small business owners to innovate, grow, create jobs and build wealth, making them an integral partner to achieving Truist Foundation’s goal of increasing economic mobility for all.”

The partnership officially kicked off at RICE today with a formal announcement from Katie Saez, Georgia regional president, Truist, followed by a panel discussion themed: “Demystifying Access to Capital for Entrepreneurs: Strategies for Success.” The panel was moderated by Bell and featured Terri Bradley, RICE stakeholder and founder and CEO of Brown Toy Box; Alphonza Gibbs, financial and business advisor, Access to Capital for Entrepreneurs (ACE); and Gayle Cabrera, director of small business, Truist as panelists.

Following the panel, entrepreneurs were able to mingle with leaders in attendance to gain expert advice on funding opportunities and avenues for growth and investment that empower small businesses to realize their full potential.

The Russell Innovation Center for Entrepreneurs (RICE) is Atlanta’s home for Black entrepreneurs. Positioned as a business generator, RICE serves as an economic mobility engine for the community: driving entrepreneurs and small business owners to innovate, grow, create jobs and build wealth. Inspired by the legacy of Herman J. Russell, one of the most successful Black entrepreneurs and civic leaders in Atlanta, RICE remains dedicated to its mission to Build. Black. Business. and stands as the largest center in the world dedicated to growing, scaling, and developing Black Entrepreneurs. For more information visit www.RussellCenter.org, download the RICE Report Volume 1, and follow @RICEAtlanta on Instagram and Twitter and @RussellCenterAtlanta on Facebook. And LinkedIn.

Truist Foundation is committed to Truist Financial Corporation’s (NYSE: TFC) purpose to inspire and build better lives and communities. The Foundation, an endowed private foundation established in 2020 whose operating budget is independent of Truist Financial Corporation, makes strategic investments in a wide variety of nonprofit organizations centered around two focus areas: building career pathways to economic mobility and strengthening small businesses to ensure all communities have an equal opportunity to thrive. Embodying these focus areas are the Foundation’s leading initiatives – the Inspire Awards and Where It Starts. Learn more at Truist.com/Foundation.

Media Contacts

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Kristen Fraser
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SOURCE Russell Innovation Center for Entrepreneurs

Originally published at https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/russell-innovation-center-for-entrepreneurs-rice-secures-2-million-investment-from-truist-to-continue-accelerating-black-entrepreneurship-in-atlanta-302076406.html
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