City Spotlight


Small business: Access to capital and resources for Black-owned businesses


Over the past two decades, Atlanta has emerged as a financial powerhouse and technology hub, but the growth and innovation for which it is synonymous has been unevenly spread across the region. Communities of color make up less than 19% of total business ownership and women constitute approximately 21% of business owners.   

mastercard solutions & initiatives

Mastercard has joined Operation HOPE’s Coalition of the Willing to support its goal of helping one million Black-owned small businesses launch and grow by 2030. By connecting aspiring and current small business owners to tailored financial coaching, capital, and digital products and tools, HOPE’s human-centered coaching is a scalable model with immense potential for impact with small business in Atlanta and beyond. 

We’ve also partnered with Atlanta’s Russell Innovation Center for Entrepreneurship (RICE) to support small businesses with the greatest potential to create jobs and best positioned to do business with the growing number of Fortune 500 companies located in Atlanta. With our help, RICE is scaling their Big IDEAS curriculum for small businesses. 

Financial security: Affordable financial tools and services


Atlanta has an abundance of strong educational institutions, including HBCUs, that have contributed to the city’s ability to attract and retain skilled talent and rich history of Black entrepreneurship. With the ever-evolving landscape of both global and local economies, we must continue to expand access to education and mentorship to Atlanta’s current and next generation of Black entrepreneurs. 

Mastercard Solutions & Initiatives

With Mastercard’s support, the Black Economic Alliance (BEA) launched the Center for Black Entrepreneurship (CBE) in partnership with Morehouse College and Spelman College. The Center for Black Entrepreneurship is the first-of-its-kind academic center created to assemble, educate, and empower a new class of Black entrepreneurial talent. The CBE seeks to eliminate barriers among Black entrepreneurs, professional investors and business builders by leveraging education, mentorship, access to capital and opportunity.  

Government engagement: Expanding city programs to support Black communities


The Atlanta area has a high level of racial inequity in income, and disparities in wealth and access to capital contribute to disparate outcomes in resident quality of life, financial security and educational opportunities.  

The Moving Atlanta Forward strategic plan presents an opportunity for the city to make significant investments in system and infrastructure improvements including education, workforce development, building and transportation construction and repair, and sustainable industry development. City leaders recognize the historical and present-day racial inequities and want to use data tools to target key resources to marginalized communities.  

Mastercard Solutions & Initiatives

Leveraging Mastercard’s Data for Equity program, the city leaders identified an array of data tools to support their specific needs, and as a result established an Equity Data Council. Mastercard’s Data for Equity program brought together a cohort of city officials leading city-wide technology and data science initiatives and other equity and inclusion, civil rights, economic development, and innovation leaders to gain access to timely, place-based data tools and resources. Atlanta’s Equity Data Council includes Data for Equity participants and other relevant staff from across city government and is currently working to design a citywide Strategic Equity Plan.  


Stories, blogs, articles and more


A can-‘do’ attitude made the difference for this wig and hair-loss entrepreneur



Smoke on the green: A pitmaster takes her shot



How I became the investor of my dreams



Elevating Atlanta’s Black entrepreneurs takes a ‘Village’



How eye-popping Black brands are shaking up luxury fashion


Event Recap

In Solidarity with Atlanta

Watch on Demand

Work and wealth In Black America

A virtual event hosted by Mastercard and Blavity explored ways to confront a financial system that has systemically disadvantaged and excluded Black communities and has exacerbated the racial wealth and opportunity gap in Atlanta. 



Read about our work in Atlanta in the media


Learn how Mastercard is collaborating with leaders across these cities to help close the racial wealth and opportunity gap

New York City 

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St. Louis

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Los Angeles

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