AltCap’s ARTcap microloan is designed to help creatives pursue their passions, grow their businesses and drive impact in our communities.
Etsy, a global marketplace that connects millions of passionate and creative buyers and sellers, and AltCap are launching a new partnership to provide microloans to artists and creative entrepreneurs in America’s Heartland.
Etsy has awarded AltCap, an impact-focused small business lender, a $500,000 grant to provide $1,000 to $10,000 loans through the ARTcap Microloan Fund to artists and creative entrepreneurs in Kansas, Missouri, and Texas. This investment in the creative economy through the Etsy Uplift Fund will help lower barriers to entrepreneurship for creatives and provide more opportunities for economically-disenfranchised communities.
Artists and creatives serve vital roles in our communities but have historically lacked access to flexible, patient capital, which has limited the growth of small businesses in the arts and culture sectors.
As an experienced Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), AltCap increases the flow of capital to communities and businesses not adequately served by mainstream financial institutions. Since 2005, AltCap has deployed nearly $300 million to small businesses and real estate development projects in socially and economically disenfranchised communities.
“When AltCap created the ARTCap Microloan Fund in 2016, we wanted to show we were committed to helping artists and creatives fund their passion,” said Ruben Alonso, CEO of AltCap. “We’re honored that Etsy has chosen to help us deepen that commitment with this investment in AltCap and acknowledge the importance of arts and the creative community to the cultural and economic vitality of a city.”
The ARTcap Microloan Fund for Artists will provide small business loans to fuel the passion of visual artists, musicians, photographers, actors, dancers, and creatives from every discipline. Funds may be used for working capital, such as equipment and materials, startup costs, or to support other growth opportunities.
“We’ve learned from our previous work that when people have access to the resources they need to thrive, they are able to not only uplift themselves, but their families, the communities they live in, and their local economies with them,” shared Chelsey Mozen, Senior Director of Impact & Sustainability at Etsy. ”We are partnering with AltCap to provide artists and entrepreneurs in America’s heartland an opportunity to apply for microloans that can help their businesses grow.”
Etsy’s contribution specifically supports loans to artists in Missouri, Kansas, and Texas in amounts ranging from $1,000 to $10,000. Applications for these loans will open May 1.
AltCap’s grant is part of the Etsy Uplift Fund, which supports nonprofits working to dismantle barriers to entrepreneurship. In 2023, Etsy deepened its impact by partnering with four organizations, including AltCap, that are focused on connecting creative entrepreneurs with tools and resources that will help their businesses thrive.
Through this partnership, Etsy and AltCap are helping to advance the creative economy by securing a vibrant, inclusive economy for generations to come.
To learn more about AltCap or apply for the ARTcap Microloan Fund for Artists, visit www.altcap.org/artcap.