During the holidays, it's more important than ever to shop mindfully—particularly by supporting small businesses in person and online. Not only can your purchases help entrepreneurs in different industries, but they can also reinvigorate local economies and give much-needed attention to stores in the community.
Bank of America, the number one lender for small businesses, has worked with entrepreneurs of all types in the face of ongoing business challenges, including the pandemic and economic instability. In their Small Business Gift Guide, they've highlighted small business clients that are worth your notice—from handcrafted glassware to fresh plant-based food, these small, local businesses deserve your time, attention, and money.
If you're a small business owner hoping to take advantage of Bank of America's resources and expertise, you can schedule an appointment with a banker here.
Chicago Raw - Bliss Bar
This health-food restaurant makes fresh, raw vegan food to-go (including meals, salads, and desserts) and also offers dehydrated snacks and sweets you can buy online—including this scrumptious combo of walnuts, pecans, almonds, bananas, raisins, and pumpkin seeds. Raw also stands for Raising Awareness Worldwide, and the business aims to popularize plant-based food. Buying from Chicago Raw this holiday season is buying "the gift of health—with products for your body, skin, and soul," explains owner and operator Polly Gaza. For her, Bank of America's help with a business loan and PPP "allowed us to go from a little market to a standalone retail location and standalone commercial kitchen. The staff was always there for me to answer questions and get funded in a timely manner."
fferrone design - Margot Decanter + Dearborn Mini Set
This glassware and furniture company features award-winning creations by designer and founder Felicia Ferrone. From this hand-formed fluted decanter and mini shot glass set to bookcases and magazine tables, items aim to elevate the everyday. Ferrone explains that beyond the ease of collaborating with her business banker, the Bank of America Business Advantage 360 online portal is the best part of her experience (and one that exceeds that of other institutions she's worked with): "I can even set a notification to send me an email or text for any credit to or draft from the account, over whatever limit I choose," she says.
Yes She May - Mini Bridge Bag
Yes She May, a community and marketplace for women entrepreneurs, is on a mission to elevate women-owned businesses. Their timeless, elevated pieces include this mini bridge handbag from Double X, created by Beijing native Xie Xiaofen and featuring gorgeous, architectural purses at reasonable price points. Yes She May founder Mei Xu, who also launched Chesapeake Bay Candle, filled a need in the fragrance market with chic candles—and, with a loan of $500,000 from Bank of America, went from making candles in her basement to selling her multi-million dollar business in 2017. "The line of credit [was] really a lifeline,” Xu said in an interview with Marie Claire. “I feel we are growing with Bank of America. It feels like you’re not working with a big institution, you’re working with people just like you.” She then pivoted to working with entrepreneurs during the pandemic in 2020, and with Bank of America's ongoing help, Yes She May now spotlights dozens of brands from more than 25 countries.
JLux - Buttercream Nadira Asymmetrical Dress
A clothing label that aims to give a dose of luxury to all their customers, JLUXLABEL offers clothes and accessories in chic silhouettes and inclusive sizing (and their clients include none other than Kim Kardashian). Their offerings include eye-catching prints and colors, alongside more classic, everyday looks like this bodycon off-the-shoulder midi dress. Christina Boyd, co-founder, says her Bank of America small business banker is an essential part of the business, "meeting with us monthly to go over forecasting and assist with daily, monthly, and yearly financial planning." Bank of America has also offered value "through offering unbeatable discounted interest rates, rewards bonuses, along with constant professional advice. It truly feels like they are a partner that is invested in the success and growth of our business."
Women face unique challenges and barriers as they work to pursue their dreams. That’s why Bank of America is dedicated to supporting women business owners every day with powerful digital tools, access to capital, industry partnerships and more.
© 2022 Bank of America Corporation. All rights reserved.
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