Truist has committed $7 million to support BIPOC- and women-led businesses

Locus, formerly Virginia Community Capital (VCC), has received a $7 million investment from Truist to support VCC’s Economic Equity Fund, a loan fund expanding access to capital and technical assistance for small business owners who are women and/or Black, Indigenous, or People of Color (BIPOC). The fund is a statewide resource, available to eligible borrowers in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

VCC is a statewide community development financial institution (CDFI) that serves low-to-moderate-income communities in Virginia. VCC’s Economic Equity Fund was launched in 2021 in response to the disproportionate impact of the coronavirus pandemic on women- and BIPOC-owned businesses in the Commonwealth. The investment from Truist will allow VCC to significantly enhance the Fund’s mission to drive equitable economic growth in underserved communities across Virginia. VCC has deployed over $6.1 million to borrowers through the Fund so far, with a healthy pipeline of additional loans in underwriting and the closing process.

“Truist’s significant investment in the Economic Equity Fund shows their commitment to our shared mission of increasing access to capital and resources for Virginia’s historically underestimated small business owners,” said Amir Kirkwood, President and CEO of VCC Social Enterprises. “We are grateful for their partnership, and we look forward to further supporting the aspirations of the Commonwealth’s women- and BIPOC-led small businesses together.”

The investment in VCC’s Economic Equity Fund is part of Truist and Truist Foundation’s $120 million joint commitment to strengthening and supporting small businesses nationwide, focusing on Black-, Latine-, and women-owned businesses. The commitment includes $30 million in philanthropic grants to support nonprofits who assist small businesses and diverse entrepreneurs and $5 million in philanthropic grants to support technical assistance, small businesses, and volunteerism. In addition, $85 million in investments support debt and equity. Truist is especially focused on partnering with CDFIs, as they are uniquely centered around providing credit and financial services to underserved populations.

“This investment will provide women- and minority-owned businesses with access to capital and training that can be used to inspire and build better lives and communities,” said Thomas Ransom, Virginia regional president for Truist. “Our partnership with VCC will support entrepreneurs and help unlock new opportunities for growth in communities across the Commonwealth.”

The partnership with Truist is helping to power VCC’s increased impact in economically excluded and historically underestimated communities in Virginia. VCC has helped drive over $1.9 billion in total impact in the Commonwealth since its launch in 2006. This includes 14,000 jobs created or retained and over 11,000 affordable housing units financed.

Media inquiries: Please contact Valerie Lee, Locus Director of Brand Strategy.

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