Supporting small businesses during the holidays
Wells Fargo is encouraging everyone to shop local this holiday season and is deploying more than $50 million from its Open for Business Fund to help small businesses.
Small businesses are the backbone of the U.S. economy, and many have experienced significant challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic this year. Some have had to close their doors temporarily or permanently, and those who remain open are grappling with complying with new and evolving health and safety regulations, finding alternate ways to meet their customers’ needs, and retaining their employees.
“Small businesses need our support more than ever, and we’ve been inspired by the determination, resilience, and creativity so many have shown throughout 2020,” said Jenny Flores, head of small business growth philanthropy for Wells Fargo. “That’s why we’re encouraging everyone to shop local this holiday season — whether that’s making room in the menu for takeout from a neighborhood restaurant, purchasing a gift card for future use, or supporting a favorite neighborhood shop online.”
To further shine a spotlight on small businesses that need sustained support from their communities, we asked small business owners Wells Fargo has worked with this year to reflect on the season and year — and share their thoughts around community, gratitude, and perseverance.
Click the arrows to read their stories
A commitment to help
In addition, this holiday season, $50 million from the Wells Fargo Open for Business Fund will be deployed to nonprofit Community Development Financial Institutions across 32 states to help the small businesses they serve. The Open for Business Fund was created to reinvest about $400 million in gross processing fees the bank would have received from the federal government for lending through the Paycheck Protection Program — a government stimulus program providing small businesses with short-term cash flow assistance — to further help entrepreneurs recover and rebuild.
Wells Fargo funded loans under the Paycheck Protection Program for approximately 194,000 small business customers, totaling $10.5 billion. The company rolled all gross processing fees it would have received from these loans and created the Open for Business Fund, which supports nonprofit Community Development Financial Institutions that provide needed capital, technical support, and long-term resiliency programs for small businesses. Additional awards will continue to be announced through 2021.
Many hearts. One community.
This holiday season, Wells Fargo is saluting those who have been working tirelessly for their communities during the pandemic. We’re proud to:
- Extend our relationship with Feeding America member food banks to help combat the sharp rise in food insecurity and ensure families have holiday meals on the table. By year-end, Wells Fargo will have helped provide 82 million meals* to families in need in 2020. Wells Fargo will also contribute $250,000 to nonprofits feeding families in need in countries across the company’s global footprint.
- Raise up to $1 million for the American Red Cross by encouraging everyone to shower frontline workers and military personnel with gratitude. For each digital holiday note of thanks with the hashtag #WFGivesThanks**, Wells Fargo will donate $5. We will also bring joy to military families by helping them reunite for the holidays.
- Help small businesses hardest hit this year by deploying approximately $50 million of the Wells Fargo Open For Business Fund to nonprofits that help them to stay open, and use social media and other marketing platforms to encourage people to “shop local” and shine a light on these vital businesses.
* 82 million meals calculation is based on 1) Actual number of meals distributed through Wells Fargo Drive-Up Food Bank events and 2) Wells Fargo’s financial contributions to support Feeding America food banks 7/20/20-12/31/20. $1 helps provide at least 10 meals secured by Feeding America on behalf of local member food banks.
** From 11/23/20 to 12/27/20, for every Wells Fargo card retweeted or shared on Twitter In-Feed, Instagram In-Feed, and/or Facebook In-Feed that includes the #WFGivesThanks hashtag, Wells Fargo will donate $5 to American Red Cross. (Maximum donation of $1,000,000; Wells Fargo is also guaranteeing a minimum donation of $500,000.) Social media user’s profile must be set to public in order for # share to count.