Hundreds of entrepreneurs in South Los Angeles will have free access to online tools and services through VEDC and Macedonia CDC partnership.

Watts Entrepreneur Business Accelerator (WEBA) today announced the opening of its Computer Lab to residents of Watts, Los Angeles and surrounding communities intended to provide online assistance and training to entrepreneurs seeking to expand their businesses through the internet. The Computer Lab is funded through VEDC’s partnership with the Macedonia Community Development Corporation (CDC), and will provide workstations and online services for entrepreneurs’ use.

The WEBA Computer Lab is part of a three-year grant intended to create a minimum of 40 new jobs and decrease unemployment and poverty rates in the economically distressed community of Los Angeles. Along with the new Computer Lab, WEBA provides technical assistance to small business owners in the form of free workshops, site visits, business plan creation, and financial education. Since its creation in November 2016, the accelerator has assisted 33 businesses and created 10 stable jobs for residents.

WEBA also provides affordable financing through the Watts Small Business Loan Fund, a $2 million loan fund which to date has lent more than $50,000 to entrepreneurs and small business owners in Watts. Powered by VEDC, the loan fund is focused on raising economic standards by assisting with job creation and workforce development, as well as creating and growing new businesses.

“The computers will benefit these underserved communities, providing local entrepreneurs access to the information superhighway, training resources, and interaction with their clients that in many cases hasn’t been possible.” said Alex Guerrero, Chief Development Officer at VEDC.

“The new computer lab is another step towards stronger financial health for Watts residents.”

“The new computer lab is another step towards stronger financial health for Watts residents,” said Shane B. Scott, who serves as Chairman of the Macedonia CDC, as well as Lead Pastor of Macedonia Baptist Church. WEBA is currently located on Macedonia Baptist Church’s campus as a professional meeting space and entrepreneur resource center.

“VEDC is proud to be partnering with Macedonia CDC in such an important launch that will connect entrepreneurs in Watts and surrounding areas to unlimited possibilities and access to the internet with the new Watts Entrepreneur Businesses Accelerator Computer Lab,” said Nishen Radia, Chairman of VEDC’s Board of Directors.

The WEBA Computer Lab opens on October 15th, 2017, and will be available to individuals planning to start a new business as well as existing businesses participating in WEBA’s programs and services. In addition to the Computer Lab, VEDC and Macedonia CDC have announced a series of new workshops for WEBA which will begin in October 2017 shortly after the opening of the Computer Lab. One-on-one Counseling will continue to be available as well.

WEBA serves as an innovative business hub specifically focusing on the needs of small business owners, entrepreneurs, and people in historically challenged communities who are looking to participate in emerging industries. The program provides financial literacy to individuals with the inspiration, drive, and organizational framework required to build sustainable businesses and promote economic development within depressed communities.

For more information about the Watts Entrepreneur Business Accelerator, please contact the office at (323) 566-2959, or visit elevatewatts.org.