Supporting small businesses. Strengthening communities.
Our mission is to provide the capital, coaching, and connections entrepreneurs need to grow great businesses that create jobs and wealth in their communities.
We seek to support small business owners over the long term, from idea to maturity. How can we help your business?
We provide loans up to $100K and grants as available
We provide 1:1 and group coaching opportunities to grow your business
We can provide kitchen space, licensing, procurement services to support your business
We believe that entrepreneurs from any background can start and grow businesses that create generational wealth for their families and communities.
We eagerly serve small business owners throughout Chicagoland and beyond. But we prioritize working with entrepreneurs that have been traditionally underserved: Black and Latinx, women, or low-income.Our Clients
DLV Printing Vernita Johnson
We called Allies for Community Business and they provided us with our first loanRead Story ›
Core Juice Bar Patricia Medina
They helped me think about different ways to pivot and bring in revenueRead Story ›
Viet Nom Nom Alan Moy
Being at The Hatchery doesn’t just mean you have a kitchen, it means you are part of a communityRead Story ›
Legendary Art Gallery Felipe Funderburg
A4CB was really interested in helping me out, even with my damaged credit.Read Story ›
We seek to support small business owners over the long term, from idea to maturity. How can we partner with you to help more businesses?Our Partnerships
City of Chicago
In 2023 we continue to serve as one of eight Chicago Business Centers that provide free coaching on licensing and other topics. In 2020 and 2021, with the Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection and a number of other nonprofits, we administered the Microbusiness Recovery grant, Together Now grant, Hospitality grant, Small Business Resiliency Fund, Chi Biz Strong grant, and Outdoor Dining grant programs. Through these pandemic response programs we provided over 8,500 small businesses with over $69M in grants and loans to help stabilize their businesses.
In 2022 and 2023, we continue to serve as a program administrator for the Cook County Small Business Source Grow Grant in partnership with the Women’s Business Development Center, and we continue to provide free coaching to county businesses. In 2021, we worked with Cook County to provide coaching to Back to Business Grant applicants. In 2020, with the Bureau of Economic Development and a number of other nonprofits, we supported the Resiliency Fund and Coaching/TA programs. Through these pandemic response programs we provided over 200 small businesses with approximately $3 million in grants and loans to help stabilize their businesses.
State of Illinois
In 2020, 2021, and 2022, with the Department of Commerce and Economic Development and a number of other nonprofits, we administered the Hospitality grant, Illinois Small Business Emergency Loan, Business Interruption Grant, and Back to Business grant programs. Through these pandemic response programs we provided 12,500 small businesses with nearly $400M in grants and loans to help stabilize their businesses.
Chicago Inclusive Growth Coalition
The Chicago Inclusive Growth Coalition is a collaboration of more than 50 business support organizations working together to help entrepreneurs grow. Our mission is to work together to 1) match diverse entrepreneurs to the community-based organizations that can serve them best and 2) serve those entrepreneurs well.
West Side United
A collaboration of more than 30 organizations led by six hospital sponsors in Chicago, West Side United has partnered with JPMorgan Chase to support Chicago businesses on the West Side through a small business accelerator grants program. Allies for Community Business serves as the fiscal agent for the grant pool, and we have collectively provided grants totaling over $1.8M to over 160 West Side businesses through the first four years of the program.
Microfinance Impact Collaborative
The Microfinance Impact Collaborative works to inform, strengthen, and accelerate the efforts of US microenterprise finance organizations that are committed to significantly increasing the impact of their work. Led by the Aspen Institute and comprised of several leading microlenders from across the United States, including Allies for Community Business, Ascendus, DreamSpring, Justine PETERSEN, LiftFund, and Opportunity Fund, the collaborative provides participating organizations with a venue and mechanism for collective learning and action.