Small businesses across the country are teetering on the edge of collapse because of the novel coronavirus, and Facebook is stepping in to help.
The social network will spend $100 million on grants to support over 30,000 small businesses in 30 countries, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg announced Tuesday. The funds will be paid out in a combination of cash and advertising credits to businesses that need help covering operational expenses and in paying rent or their employees, Business Insider‘s Dominic Reuter reported.
Restaurants, coffee shops, gyms, fitness studios, and cultural institutions across the United States have closed as authorities urge Americans to practice social distancing to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus that has already killed more than 20,000 people across the globe. Some cities forced the closures, while others shuttered voluntarily as customers embraced social distancing in an attempt to slow the virus’ spread.
“We’ve heard loud and clear that financial support could enable them to keep the lights on and pay people who can’t come to work,” Sandberg wrote on Facebook Tuesday. “Whatever happens next, we will be working to help businesses weather this storm.”
Here’s how you can get a grant from Facebook for your business.
First, make sure your business qualifies for Facebook’s Small Business Grants program.
Facebook has yet to announce the program’s application criteria, but it will likely include a measure of a business-size similar to that of the Small Business Administration. The SBA’s size standards tool can be found here.
Next, head to the program’s official website: Facebook.com/Business.
Here is a link to the Small Business Grants page.
The application has yet to open, but business owners can sign up for updates near the bottom of the page.
Business Insider will update this article as Facebook releases more information about the program.
Facebook says they will “begin taking applications in the coming weeks.”
In the meantime, Facebook recommends that business owners explore its Business Resource Hub for additional resources to help them through the pandemic.
Facebook’s Business Resource Hub has information on how you can stay informed on your options and in touch with customers during the coronavirus crisis.
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