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Verizon’s Small Business Digital Ready program reaches 300K businesses with free, online resources

2024-05-08 09:00 ET - News Release

NEW YORK, May 08, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Verizon’s Small Business Digital Ready Program, a free resource for small businesses to access over 50 courses, expert-led workshops, in-person and virtual networking and incentives, such as grants, celebrates today having reached 300,000 businesses across the US. This milestone marks critical progress towards Verizon’s goal to reach 1 million small businesses by 2030.

Of the 300,000 businesses Small Business Digital Ready has reached, 51% are women-owned, 62% are Black-owned or Hispanic-owned businesses, and 40% have been in business for 2 years or less - often the most precarious time for new small businesses.

Active users of Small Business Digital Ready, defined as those who have completed at least two resources on the platform this year, are also eligible to apply for the program’s national $10K grants, which are awarded to select applicants. The latest national grant cycle is now open until June 28, 2024 at 11:59pm PT.

Rose Stuckey Kirk, Verizon’s Chief Corporate Social Responsibility Officer, said, “Verizon is leveraging its technology and innovation to promote economic empowerment and enable communities to thrive through Small Business Digital Ready. This program is part of our responsible business plan, Citizen Verizon, which has an ambitious goal to support 1 million small businesses by 2030, and today we are excited to celebrate our significant milestone.

"It's critical that we've reached 300,000 businesses, but it’s important to say that that’s not all we have done. Small businesses that use Digital Ready are reporting real value. In fact, 77% of respondents to a Small Business Digital Ready survey** said that the platform had some effect on increasing their revenue or profitability, and 78% said the platform had an effect on increasing customers. When small businesses thrive, their communities thrive."

Verizon Small Business Digital Ready provides personalized tools and resources in partnership with Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) and Next Street. Popular courses include building a brand, building a communications strategy, financing your business and cybersecurity.

The platform also has a dedicated Spanish-language site, with courses exclusively in Spanish. Verizon Business learned from its 2024 Latino Small Business Survey that 82% of Latino small business owners surveyed are currently looking for external support to adapt to changing customer needs. They also continue seeking support in other areas, such as finance, cybersecurity, and marketing, to name a few.

Small Business Digital Ready is part of Citizen Verizon, the company’s responsible business plan for economic, environmental and social advancement. Citizen Verizon empowers Verizon to deliver on its mission to move the world forward through action by expanding digital access and resources, protecting the climate, and ensuring people have the skills needed for in-demand jobs. Through Citizen Verizon, and the key pillars of Digital Inclusion, Climate Protection and Human Prosperity, the company's responsible business goals include providing 10 million youths with digital skills training by 2030, supporting 1 million small businesses with resources to help them thrive in the digital economy by 2030, achieving net zero emissions in its operations by 2035, and preparing 500,000 individuals for jobs of the future by 2030. Learn more at CitizenVerizon.com.

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, Nasdaq: VZ) was formed in 2000 and is one of the world’s leading providers of technology and communications services. Headquartered in New York City and with a presence around the world, Verizon generated revenues of $134.0 billion in 2023. The company offers data, video and voice services and solutions on its award-winning networks and platforms, delivering on customers’ demand for mobility, reliable network connectivity, and security.

**Based on 2,009 survey respondents of Small Business Digital Ready users

VERIZON’S ONLINE MEDIA CENTER: News releases, stories, media contacts and other resources are available at verizon.com/news. News releases are also available through an RSS feed. To subscribe, visit www.verizon.com/about/rss-feeds/.

Media contact:
Hope Arcuri Armanus 
hope.arcuri.armanus@verizon.com


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