DoorDash recently announced the start of its Main Street Strong initiative, an educational program to support minority entrepreneurs.
The DoorDash Accelerator for Local Goods, in partnership with Next Street, a small business solutions firm, will help women, transgender, immigrants, or people of color empower them by giving them resources, education and funding to produce and distribute their products via DashMart.
The educational program will offer a self-guided six-week course that will cover topics like supply chain management, vendor relationship, managing cash flow and more.
“Local businesses generate a substantial amount of economic return for the communities they thrive within, while also creating notable job opportunities for residents,” Tasia Hawkins, Social Impact Program Lead at DoorDash, said. “By developing the DoorDash Accelerator for Local Goods, we are equipping aspiring entrepreneurs with the educational and financial capital to become wholesale-ready and create an even stronger relationship between local businesses and consumers residing in the community.”
Aside from the educational aspect, participants will receive a $5,000 grant to support their business and various other resources provided for the company.
“Before assuming the role of Chief Restaurant Advisor, I partnered with DoorDash to offer my line of This Little Goat sauces and spices in many DashMart locations across the country,” said Chef Stephanie Izard, Chief Restaurant Advisor at DoorDash. “This is a full-circle moment where I was able to help shape the curriculum for this inaugural cohort, especially as I’ve experienced the challenges of launching a packaged product firsthand – including creating a distribution plan and coordinating with manufacturers.”
Entrepreneurs speak to their experience with DoorDash’s new initiative. Ariel Barbouth, Founder and CEO of Nuchas, said, “By partnering with DoorDash to sell our empanadas through DashMart, we’re able to reach new customers and diversify our revenue streams in an effective way. We’re happy that DoorDash is creating the DoorDash Accelerator for Local Goods to help entrepreneurs and assist them in reaching their goals.”
To apply for the DoorDash Accelerator for Local Goods, you must be a registered operating packaged food local business in New York City, Chicago, or the greater Washington DC area. Have twenty or fewer employees, generate less than $1M in revenue in the fiscal year 2021, and be in business for at least two years.
“To support the fair and equitable distribution of resources, it’s crucial that we remove barriers for minority and women-owned businesses in New York City and beyond,” New York State Assemblywoman Rodneyse Bichotte Hermelyn said. “It’s incredible to see DoorDash creating the Accelerator for Local Goods to help remove some of those barriers by providing a cohesive six-week business curriculum, in addition to a cash grant and support with marketing and sales to help local entrepreneurs reach their full potential.”
Eligible businesses can apply for the DoorDash Accelerator for Local Goods till April 1 and learn more about the program here.