COVID-19 is stressing the global economy. On Friday March 27, 2020 mandatory lockdowns and shelter-in-place orders shuttered small businesses across the nation. Foot traffic is gone, but payroll and rent are not. Small businesses face mass extinction.
That night, the CARES Act was signed into law, designating $350B for small business emergency relief funds — still unclear was how to operationalize the distribution of these funds. The SBA had never disbursed more than $7.5B in a year and the average time to approval was ~ 2 months, but there remained concerns about efficient and fair implementation.
Technologists want to make a difference. Over that weekend, AIR hosted a hackathon with 60 hackers from 20+ fintechs and financial institutions to create scalable solutions for onboarding, underwriting, and disbursement of SBA funds. The teams demonstrated their prototypes on Sunday, March 29th which were packaged and forwarded to the SBA. Read the report here.
Watch our opening Kick-Off video here: Hackathon Kick-Off 3/27/2020
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