Excluded entrepreneurs—small business owners of color—run into roadblocks trying to obtain conventional loans, and that drives them to seek predatory loans. Rende Progress Capital, a racial equity loan fund in Grand Rapids, has received $500,000 from Meijer Inc. to help address this problem.

The Meijer investment is intended to help close the racial wealth gap and eliminate the barriers to obtaining conventional loans—which, by some estimates, result in 36% more loan denials than their white counterparts experience.