Millennium Post

Facebook offers $4.3 mn in grants to Indian small businesses across 5 cities

New Delhi: Social media giant Facebook on Tuesday said it will offer grants totalling $4.3 million (Rs 32 crore) to more than 3,000 small businesses across five Indian cities, including Delhi and Mumbai, to help them grow their operations amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

This is part of Facebook's $100 million grant, announced in March, to help small businesses in 30 countries cope with the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

"As part of our $100 million global grant for small businesses announced back in March, today (Tuesday) we are announcing a grant of $4.3 million (Rs 32 crore) for more than 3,000 small businesses across Delhi, Gurgaon, Mumbai, Hyderabad and Bengaluru, where Facebook has offices," Facebook India MD and Vice-President Ajit Mohan said in a blogpost.

The grant includes both cash and ad credits, with cash constituting a larger share, he added.

He said the grant programme is open to small businesses from all industries and verticals, and businesses do not need to have a Facebook family of apps presence in order to apply. Also, they would be free to do what they wish to do with this grant.

Mohan noted that earlier this year, Facebook underlined its commitment to India and especially to small businesses through its $5.7-billion investment and partnership with Jio Platforms.

"Small businesses are a big priority for Facebook. Every month, 180 million small businesses globally use the Facebook family of apps to reach potential customers and build their business.

"It means that for every 45 people in the world, there is a small business present on the Facebook family of apps," he said.

Mohan said that as more small businesses come online in India over the next decade fuelled by the rapid adoption of digital technologies, Facebook can play a material role in enabling new opportunities for them. As per the India findings of the State of Small Business Report, more than a third of operational small and medium businesses (SMBs) on Facebook India expect cash flow to be a challenge in the next few months.

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