Supporting Atlanta’s Minority-Owned Businesses For Future Growth

Supporting Atlanta’s Minority-Owned Businesses For Future Growth

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Interise partners with The Partnership for Southern Equity to launch Scale Accelerator ATL

Boston, Massachusetts – Interise, a Boston-based national nonprofit, and The Partnership for Southern Equity launched Scale Accelerator ATL, an innovative business education program designed to grow established black and brown owned small businesses within the city of Atlanta. The program is made possible with funding from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation’s initiative for commitment to drive equitable access to opportunity through advancements in racial equity and is part of a larger strategy to build out programming for minority-owned small businesses in the metro Atlanta area and in urban communities throughout the Southeast. The program is part of The Partnership for Southern Equity’s Just Opportunity “equity agenda” which promotes the freedom and liberation of Black, Brown and other historically disinvested communities of color through economic inclusion.

Interise’s StreetWise ‘MBA’™, a nationally recognized, award-winning curriculum designed to accelerate the growth of existing small businesses, is the foundation of the program. The StreetWise ‘MBA’™ uses a peer-learning method to provide small business owners with the knowledge, know-how, and networks necessary to grow and scale. Industry experts, business peers, and the program’s instructor provide insights, strategies, motivation, and accountability. At the end of the program, participants walk away with a three-year Strategic Growth Action Plan outlining the action steps required to achieve their business goals.

“We’re proud to partner with The Partnership for Southern Equity to support these local small businesses as they scale and grow. Scale Accelerator ATL business owners will drive their companies to new heights within the city of Atlanta.” said Darrell Byers, CEO of Interise. Our research shows that when small minority-owned businesses increase their proficiency, the community grows stronger, and we can expect impressive results in terms of job creation and revenue growth.”

Historically, post-StreetWise ‘MBA’ program, Interise companies’ nationwide increased revenue by 38% on average and create new jobs at 4x the rate of the private sector; and 96% of participants are likely to recommend the program.  Most alumni from Interise also become contract-ready, and the number one reason these companies experience such high growth is by successfully securing procurement opportunities in the public, private and non-profit sectors.

“Access to equitable supports is needed to advance economic inclusion,” said Nathaniel Smith, founder and Chief Equity Officer of the Partnership for Southern Equity.  “When given the right access to resources, support and investment, minority-owned businesses can be positioned to build wealth for themselves and their families. Through our partnership with Interise, Scale Accelerator ATL will provide a much-needed pathway and pipeline to success by dismantling the barriers that have kept Black entrepreneurs from succeeding, bridging these gaps by expanding economic pathways, and advancing efforts to ensure that they will thrive in our new economic reality.”

The first cohort of Scale Accelerator ATL will run from March 8th, 2023, to October 23rd, 2023. For more information about Scale Accelerator ATL or the eligibility requirements and application information visit


About Interise

Interise ( builds diverse and inclusive local economies through small business development, supporting the growth of minority-owned small businesses and small businesses located in low-wealth communities. Interise contributes to inclusive economic development through its national research on the growth of established small businesses and its award-winning business development programs. As Interise companies grow, they contribute to local job creation and build community wealth. Interise companies historically create new jobs at 5x the rate of the private sector and are responsible for the creation of over 30,000 new jobs. Interise partners with government agencies, anchor institutions, and business associations to offer the StreetWise ‘MBA’™ program in 80+ cities nationwide. Strategic Growth Partners include the Kauffman Foundation, the TD Bank Foundation, the Wells Fargo Foundation and the Prudential Foundation.

About The Partnership for Southern Equity:

Based in Atlanta, PSE is a nonprofit organization that advances policies and institutional actions that promote racial equity and shared prosperity for all in the growth of metropolitan Atlanta and the American South. Through forums, research, and organizing efforts, PSE brings together the regional community to lift up and encourage just, sustainable, and civic practices for balanced growth and opportunity.

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