More than 100 Atlanta entrepreneurs have received grants from the city to help their businesses recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Mayor’s Office of Film and Entertainment and Invest Atlanta announced Friday a joint program to provide $725,000 in grants to support creative industries. They awarded 128 grants, ranging from $5,000 to $20,000.
Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens said the program, called the Creative Industries Grant Fund, was designed to boost the city’s burgeoning film and entertainment sectors, which were among the sectors hardest hit by the pandemic.
“The Creative Industries Grant Fund gave us an additional tool to support a large and growing sector of jobs and talent to further strengthen Atlanta’s burgeoning reputation as a global entertainment hub,” Dickens said in a news release.
The grant fund is a rebranding and a refocusing of a loan program the city launched in 2017 to assist creative industries. The previous program provided entrepreneurs with nearly $520,000 in loans, the release said.
To qualify, applicants had to verify their businesses are located in the city, provide other financial documentation and list which active or future projects would be supported by the grant funds. Applications were vetted by the Creative Industries Advisory Board and Invest Atlanta.
Grant recipients can use the funds for production, post-production, distribution, marketing outreach, touring, prototype development and other uses for creative projects. In a 2020 Invest Atlanta survey, 84% of respondents who work in creative fields said their incomes fell.
“Creatives have been hit particularly hard by the pandemic as performing arts centers closed, events were called off, and studios were temporarily shuttered,” Eloisa Klementich, president and CEO of Invest Atlanta, said in the release. “... We recognize that many are still working to regain their footing, which makes this round of funding especially impactful.”
Credit: Steve Schaefer
Credit: Steve Schaefer
The grant recipients varied from independent content creators, record and management labels, musicians and businesses that provide educational resources and platforms to creative entrepreneurs.
More information is available at investatlanta.com/businesses/startups-creatives/creative-industries-grant-fund.
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