January 10, 2018, 10:07 AM EST
Synchrony Financial Awards Program Helps Small Businesses Improve Customer Experiences and Strengthen Communities
Working Forward Small Business Awards recognize 10 companies; Winners receive $20,000 each to drive business growth and community involvement
Synchrony Financial will award $20,000 to each winner – $10,000 to improve their business and $10,000 to invest in local community projects and charities of their choosing.
“Small businesses are at the heart of every community,” said Neeraj Mehta, CEO Payment Solutions, Synchrony Financial. “Synchrony Financial helps them address challenges ranging from the rate and speed of digital transformation to funding the addition of skilled talent. To help our partners modernize and grow their business we offer payments, marketing expertise and financing options. The Working Forward Awards program helps businesses advance in their industry and give back to their community.”
Since 2016, Synchrony Financial has awarded $300,000 to winners in 15 cities across the U.S., chosen from more than 2,600 applicants. Each small business has fewer than 30 full-time employees.
The award submissions were evaluated by a panel of experts who weighed the clarity, level of overall business impact, how the community plan would impact the local neighborhood and align with Synchrony’s mission, and the passion that was reflected in each personal story.
“We’re excited to receive this honor,” said Jennifer Lantz, co-founder of Bandwagon Music and Repair. “Being a small business owner is one of the most scary and challenging experiences of your life, but also the most rewarding. We’re thrilled to be recognized for our hard work and have a partner like Synchrony to help us invest in our technology, stay up-to-date on business trends and support community initiatives.”
The 2017 Synchrony Financial Working Forward Award winners are:
- Bandwagon Music & Repair of Nashville, Tennessee plans to invest in additional staff and expand their product offerings to maintain the customer experience for band students, directors and families, as well as provide funding to local music programs.
- C & M Equipment of Gold Beach, Oregon caters to the power equipment needs of the Gold Beach community. C & M will restore their storefront to benefit both their business and the neighborhood, as well as donate to local music programs.
- Clark’s Car Care of Naperville, Illinois will invest in staff training to continue to provide top-quality car maintenance for their customers. They will donate to Cares for Cars which provides low cost auto-repairs to those in need.
- Home Exterior Systems, LLC. of Tomball, Texas plans to expand their current offerings to include residential flood recovery stemming from the devastation of Hurricane Harvey, as well as contribute to their non-profit, Institute for Renovation Contractors, to educate local labor workers.
- Laws Flooring and Rugs of Jonesboro, Arkansas will improve their showroom by investing in upgraded vinyl printing technology, as well as donate to Habitat for Humanity in their community.
- MAE Power Equipment of Mission, Texas and led by the tenacious 87-year-old Ben Cavazos, will invest in a delivery and on-site training program to cater to their customer’s needs, as well as fund a technology upgrade for the Boys and Girls Club of Mission.
- Mattress For Less of Peoria, Illinois plans to invest in a new location, as well as hire additional experienced staff to execute on its hybrid philanthropy-business model. In the community they will further their commitment to the Peoria Jobs Partnership to prepare prisoners to join the workforce.
- Midas of Sarasota-Bradenton , Florida is a full-service automotive repair and maintenance business. They will upgrade their diagnostic equipment to stay at the forefront of the changing technology landscape and will increase their marketing initiatives. They will also donate to the Pints for Play blood drive in their community.
- Sawyers Jewelers of Fenton, Michigan will invest in equipment to streamline their custom jewelry offering, helping them compete against the mounting pressures of online retailers. Additionally, they will donate to their organization, GEM Charities, to benefit local children fighting terminal illness and women affected by domestic violence.
- Super Stitch Inc. of North East, Pennsylvania will enhance their sewing learning-center experience by updating their parking accommodations, as well as donate their funds to the local North East Fire Department.
For more information on this year’s winners, visit https://synchronybusiness.com/awards
About Synchrony Financial
Synchrony Financial (NYSE:SYF) is one of the nation’s premier consumer financial services companies. Our roots in consumer finance trace back to 1932, and today we are the largest provider of private label credit cards in the United States based on purchase volume and receivables.* We provide a range of credit products through programs we have established with a diverse group of national and regional retailers, local merchants, manufacturers, buying groups, industry associations and healthcare service providers to help generate growth for our partners and offer financial flexibility to our customers. Through our partners’ over 365,000 locations across the United States and Canada, and their websites and mobile applications, we offer our customers a variety of credit products to finance the purchase of goods and services. Synchrony Financial offers private label credit cards, Dual Card™, and general purpose co-branded credit cards, promotional financing and installment lending, loyalty programs and FDIC-insured savings products through Synchrony Bank. More information can be found at www.synchronyfinancial.com, www.facebook.com/SynchronyFinancial, www.linkedin.com/company/synchrony-financial and www.twitter.com/SYFNews.
*Source: The Nilson Report (June 2017, Issue # 1112) - based on 2016 data.