Intuit, the company behind software products like – QuickBooks, TurboTax and Quicken – that helped revolutionize the way people manage their personal finances and run small businesses is awarding grants to businesses to help spur job creation in local communities.
The Love A Local Business competition lets fans, including customers, vendors, employees, and the community, determine who deserves some love – in the form of small business grants. These grants provide funding for small businesses through March 2012. Over the past 18 months, Intuit has been awarding hiring grants in $500 to $25,000 increments to U.S.-based small businesses. The company has pledged to bestow $1 million in grants over the course of the program, which runs in three-month increments. The program has already given away $850,000 so far. In January Inuit is giving away one $25,000 prize to a deserving local business.
Here’s how it works:
Businesses can nominate themselves, then solicit votes from customers, family, friends and others who like their business. Each vote is another chance to win. At the end of each month of the three-month contest period, one business is randomly chosen from all of the entrants in that period. At the end of the three-month period, the contest starts over with new nominees, voting and awards.
“We’ve given grants to about 125 different businesses,” says Intuit’s Laura Messerschmitt. “Some of them have used them for hiring between four and 10 employees. We’ve created more than 200 jobs through this program.”
The benefits of this program are far-reaching for an eco-entrepreneur. Apart from boosting community participation, the grant can provide valuable capital to implement an innovative green service or energy-efficient upgrades.
To enter your small business for a chance to win a grant, visit the FAQ section.