Restaurant Revitalization Fund gets 186K+ applications in 1st days


People drink outdoors on the patio of Big Dean’s Ocean Front Cafe in Santa Monica, Calif. in March. Thousands of restaurants and bars decimated by COVID-19 have a better chance at survival as the government begins handing out $28.6 billion in grants – money to help these businesses stay afloat while they wait for customers to return. The Small Business Administration is accepting applications for grants from the Restaurant Revitalization Fund as of Monday, May 3. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)

WASHINGTON, D.C. (WWTI) — The first day and a half of the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Restaurant Revitalization Fund saw a need for support. According to the SBA, in the first 36 hours, 186,200 restaurants, bars, and other eligible businesses applied for the program. That’s above 50 per second.

More than half of those applications were from businesses owned by women, veterans, or individuals from historically disadvantaged backgrounds. Check out the demographic breakdown of applicants:

  • 97,600 applications from women-owned businesses
  • 46,4000 applications from veteran-owned businesses
  • 30,8000 applications from those who are historically socially and economically disadvantaged
  • 16,2000 a combination of the three

The SBA also reported that 61,700 applications were sent in from businesses with under $500,000 in annual pre-pandemic revenue. This represents some of the smallest restaurants and bars, the SBA stated.

The Restaurant Revitalization Fund launched at noon on Monday after opening the portal to registrations on April 30.

The fund was established through the American Rescue Plan. It is set to award $28.6 billion to bars, restaurants, food trucks, and other food and drinking establishments. They’re eligible for grants equal to their pandemic-related revenue loss, with a maximum of $10 million per business and $5 million per location.

All businesses can now apply for the funding, but for the first 21 days, the SBA is prioritizing applications from small businesses owned and controlled by women, veterans, and socially and economically disadvantaged individuals. Applications will be funded on a first-come, first-served basis.

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