City of Charlotte Announces Partnership with Operation HOPE

Published on April 04, 2023

Opertation hope

The City of Charlotte announced today a groundbreaking partnership with Operation HOPE's 1 Million Black Businesses (1MBB) initiative. The goal of 1MBB is to start, scale, and grow one million Black businesses by 2030 across the nation. The city's commitment includes supporting its Small Business Resource Partners as it connects Black entrepreneurs to the tools and resources to start and grow a successful business, with a focus on creating a successful path to building generational wealth. Joann Massey, HOPE's Senior Vice President of 1MBB, will join distinguished leaders during the event.

Collectively, the city and Operation HOPE will work together to connect Black business owners to tools such as:

  • Financial education and 1:1 coaching to help meet personal financial goals

  • Business education & coaching services

  • Shopify and Quickbooks Subscriptions

  • Access to a pool of expert volunteers

1MBB launched in October 2020 and is largely funded through Shopify, the world's second-largest e-commerce platform. The movement is part of Operation HOPE's broader mission to promote financial inclusion and dignity, aimed at empowering the underserved in America. To date, HOPE's 1MBB initiative has supported more than 155,000 unique businesses through its HOPE Inside network and 1MBB partners, accounting for approximately 5% of all Black-owned businesses in the U.S. The program's mission aligns with the strategic goals and objectives of the city.

"Charlotte is now a major hub for finance and banking, including the presence of several HOPE partners, who are committed to empowering Black small business owners," said Operation HOPE Founder, Chairman, and CEO John Hope Bryant. "We are grateful to the Mayor and leaders throughout the City of Charlotte for taking action to help build entrepreneurship and fuel economic prosperity for every community. Together, we will support existing and aspiring entrepreneurs – through education, access to resources and capital— to reach our goal of creating one million new Black business owners by 2030."

Operation HOPE's 1MBB initiative will also provide aspiring Black business owners with top-of-the-line coaching and educational resources as well as a 120-day free trial, courtesy of Shopify. iHeartMedia affiliates will also provide social media support and advertising to a select group of entrepreneurs in the future, with additional activations to come.

"As a city, we truly believe in the power of diversity and inclusion, and fully support our small and minority-owned businesses," said Charlotte District 2 City Council Member Malcolm Graham. "We know we can do more to build up our small business climate, especially in areas that have been traditionally underrepresented by city government. In partnership with Operation HOPE, we're excited to create meaningful impact and leverage 1MBB in Charlotte."