Love, Tito’s Small Business Grant Program

Tito’s Handmade Vodka was founded by sixth-generation Texan, Bert “Tito” Beveridge. In the mid-nineties, on a plot of land in rural Austin, he built a 998 square foot shack, rigged a pot still with spare parts, and created Tito’s Handmade Vodka.

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Tito’s has grown from that small, bootstrapped operation to a fan-favorite brand known for its award-winning product, no-frills label, fair price, and widespread charitable contributions.

This year, Tito’s is celebrating its 25th anniversary. The company is passionate about entrepreneurship and wants to give back to small business owners who are following their passion and making an impact in their community – just like Tito did, and continues to do, alongside the wider Tito’s Handmade Vodka team.

Through the company’s Love, Tito’s philanthropic program, which aims to turn spirits into love and goodness, Tito’s is excited to launch the “Love, Tito’s Small Business Grant Program,” which will support 10 small business owners with $25,000 grants to support their vision for growth.

HOW IT WORKS

The “Love, Tito’s Small Business Grant Program” will provide 10 grants of $25,000 each to small business owners who best demonstrate in their application:

  • A meaningful connection to their community
  • A clear and compelling vision for their business
  • The Tito’s Handmade Vodka values of grit, love, kindness, family, meaning and purpose

Small businesses are eligible to apply for the “Love, Tito’s Small Business Grant Program,” if they meet the following criteria:

  • Be owned by the applicant
  • Business owner(s) must be at least 21 years of age or older
  • Be based in the United States
  • Have been in business for at least one year at the time of application launch (since June 2021)
  • Have earned less than $1 million in revenue in 2021
  • Have a business bank account
  • Business owner(s) must not hold an interest in an alcoholic beverage license of any kind or be employed by a business that holds an alcohol license
  • Not own a business in a restricted industry. Full list below

Here’s how this will work:

  • Interested applicants can fill out the application and provide all required documentation here when the application launches on June 1st.
  • To apply, applicants will need to sign in or create an account with Submittable, the application software that we use.
  • Applications will be accepted from June 1, 2022 8am ET to June 30, 2022 8pm ET
  • Accion Opportunity Fund will assess the grant applications against the program criteria and select 10 grantees to receive $25,000 grants each
  • Grantees will be notified in July 2022 and grants will be issued in August 2022

APPLY NOW

Frequently Asked Questions

 WHAT IS THE “LOVE, TITO’S SMALL BUSINESS” Grant?

Tito’s Handmade Vodka is celebrating its 25th anniversary by launching the “Love, Tito’s Small Business Grant Program.” This program will provide 10 grants of $25,000 to small business owners who best demonstrate the company values of grit, love, kindness, family, meaning and purpose.

WHAT ARE THE ROLES OF THE ORGANIZATIONS INVOLVED IN THIS PROGRAM?

Tito’s Handmade Vodka is the grant sponsor, and Accion Opportunity Fund is the grant fund administrator.

 WHAT ARE THE CRITERIA FOR ELIGIBLE SMALL BUSINESSES?

Eligible small businesses must:

  • Be owned by the applicant
  • Business owner(s) must be at least 21 years of age or older
  • Be based in the United States
  • Have been in business for at least one year at the time of application launch (since June 2021)
  • Have earned less than $1 million in revenue in 2021
  • Have a business bank account
  • Business owner(s) must not hold an interest in an alcoholic beverage license of any kind or be employed by a business that holds an alcohol license. As a manufacturer of a distilled spirit, Tito’s Handmade Vodka is legally prohibited from providing monetary funds to licensed accounts.
  • Not own a business in a restricted industry. Full list below

HOW MANY GRANTS WILL BE AWARDED?

10 grants of $25,000 each will be awarded to selected small business owners

HOW WILL GRANTEES BE SELECTED?

Grant applications will be scored by Accion Opportunity Fund staff against the following criteria:

  • Their connection to their community
  • Vision for their business
  • Demonstration of Tito’s company values of grit, love, kindness, family, meaning and purpose

HOW DO I APPLY?

Applications will be open Wednesday, June 1, 2022 at 8 am ET.

 WHEN IS THE DEADLINE TO APPLY?

The deadline to apply is June 30, 2022 at 8:00 pm ET.

 WHAT LANGUAGES is THE APPLICATION AVAILABLE IN?

The application is available only in English.

 CAN MY BUSINESS APPLY MORE THAN ONCE?

No, business owners can apply to the opportunity one time only. In addition, entrepreneurs who own more than one business are eligible for the opportunity for only one business. Duplicated entries will be excluded from consideration.

WHAT DOCUMENTS DO I HAVE TO SUBMIT WITH MY APPLICATION?

  • All pages of the 2021 federal business taxes OR 2020 federal business taxes with your 2021 extension. If the business files a Schedule C, please submit all pages of your 1040 personal tax return with Schedule C for business.
  • A front-and-back color copy of the business owner’s government-issued identification [Acceptable identification includes a driver’s license, federal government employee ID card, passport, permanent resident card, alien resident card, or matricula consular]
  • All pages of the most recent business bank statement (businesses that do not have a business bank account are not eligible for this opportunity)
  • A completed W9 form for the business bank account referenced above: click to download

WHY DO I HAVE TO SUBMIT MY BANK INFORMATION?

Bank information is submitted to make the deposit of grant funds via ACH if you are selected as a grantee. This information will only be used if you are selected.

 WHAT IF I AM UNABLE TO PROVIDE ALL OF THE INFORMATION REQUESTED?

You must provide all documentation requested. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

 ARE SOLE PROPRIETORS ELIGIBLE TO APPLY?

Yes, sole proprietors are eligible to apply.

 CAN BUSINESSES LOCATED IN U.S. TERRITORIES APPLY?

No, businesses located in U.S. territories are not eligible for this opportunity. A business must be located within one of the 50 United States or Washington DC to be eligible.

 WHAT IF I AM AN EMPLOYEE AT A SMALL BUSINESS OR SERVE IN A MANAGEMENT ROLE AT A SMALL BUSINESS, CAN I APPLY ON ITS BEHALF?

No, you must own a small business to be eligible. Employees of small businesses are not eligible for this grant.

 ARE NONPROFIT ORGANIZATIONS ELIGIBLE TO APPLY?

No, this opportunity is only open to owners of small businesses (for profit).

WHAT INDUSTRIES ARE ELIGIBLE TO APPLY?

Businesses can apply from any industry EXCEPT the following, which are ineligible:

  • Adult entertainment including strip clubs, escort services, adult bookstores, and businesses whose principal business is the sale of pornography
  • Tobacco stores, smoke shops, cigarette & cigar retailers and wholesalers, cigarette stands
  • Firearms sellers, merchants, retailers, or wholesalers; ammunition sales; gun clubs; shooting ranges
  • Marijuana-related businesses; cannabis dispensaries, marijuana crop farming, edibles
  • Massage parlors, saunas, or hot tub facilities
  • Illegal activities
  • Gambling and betting activities, racetracks
  • Real estate investment companies (residential and commercial), house flippers, hotels, businesses whose principal source of revenue is rental income
  • Banking and financial institutions; central banking; other monetary intermediation; trusts, funds, and similar financial entities
  • Merchant service companies, merchant sales organizations, payment services
  • Lending businesses; payday lenders, title lenders, other credit granting
  • Small Business loan brokers
  • Check cashers
  • Bail bonds
  • Pawn shops
  • Collection companies/lawyers or debt consolidation firms
  • Multi-level marketing companies or businesses based on pyramid sales plans
  • Nonprofit organizations
  • Religious organizations, churches, temples, mosques and shrines and other services provided specifically for the religious community
  • Activities of political organizations
  • Transportation of hazardous materials
  • Oil and gas exploration/securities
  • Rideshare (i.e. Uber/Lyft drivers)
  • Alcohol-licensed businesses of any kind, including producers, distributors, retailers, restaurants, and bars. As a manufacturer of a distilled spirit, Tito’s Handmade Vodka is legally prohibited from providing monetary funds to licensed accounts.
  • Businesses that conduct activities related to children/youth

 DO I HAVE TO BE A UNITED STATES CITIZEN OR LEGAL RESIDENT TO BE ELIGIBLE?

We do not request any information related to the immigration status of applicants. Applicants must answer all application questions and submit all required documentation to be eligible.

 IF I HAVE MULTIPLE BUSINESSES, CAN I APPLY MULTIPLE TIMES?

No, each individual business owner may only apply once and is only eligible to receive one grant even if they own more than one business.

 CAN I MAKE CHANGES TO MY APPLICATION AFTER SUBMISSION?

No, you may not make any changes after the application has been submitted.

 CAN I SAVE MY APPLICATION AS I AM WORKING ON IT?

Yes, you can save your application.

 WILL I RECEIVE CONFIRMATION AFTER THE APPLICATION HAS BEEN SUBMITTED?

Yes, you will receive confirmation by email.

 WHEN WILL I HEAR ABOUT THE STATUS OF MY APPLICATION?

All applicants will be notified about the status of their application, whether they received a grant or not, in July 2022.

 HOW WILL I BE NOTIFIED IF I WILL RECEIVE A GRANT?

All communications regarding the grant will be through emails from Accion Opportunity Fund, including the notification if you are selected to receive a grant.

 WHEN WILL THE GRANT FUNDS BE DISTRIBUTED?

The grant funds will be distributed in August 2022.

 HOW WILL THE GRANT MONEY BE DISBURSED?

Grant money will be transferred from Accion Opportunity Fund to the grantees’ verified business checking account.

 HOW CAN GRANT FUNDS BE USED?

Grant funds are intended to be used to as grantees see fit to support their business growth and success.

 IS THERE A FEE TO APPLY?

No, there is no fee to apply for this grant program.

IS THE GRANT AWARD CONSIDERED TAXABLE INCOME?

Yes, this grant may be subject to tax reporting based on the value of the grant received. Accion Opportunity Fund will issue 1099 tax forms to all grant recipients in early 2023 to be filed as part of the 2022 tax year. Please consult with a tax professional to learn more.

 WHAT IF I AM HAVING TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES WITH THE APPLICATION?

You must provide all documentation requested. Incomplete applications will not be considered. Visit Submittable’s Resource Page to learn how to troubleshoot this problem or reach out to Submittable’s Customer Support team with any technical questions here.

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