You are using an outdated browser. Please upgrade your browser to use this site.

CIT and Operation HOPE Celebrate National Small Business Week and Introduce Launch and Grow
A HOPE Inside Program Presented by CIT to Empower Women Entrepreneurs
Thursday, May 2, 2019 12:00 PM

NEW YORK, May 2, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- CIT Group Inc. (NYSE: CIT), in partnership with the nonprofit Operation HOPE, today introduced the next facet of its Launch and Grow initiative, a 12-week HOPE Inside program aimed at empowering women small business owners in New York City and Los Angeles.   

(PRNewsfoto/CIT Group Inc.)

Building upon last year's ten-part small business educational video series, the 2019 Launch and Grow program kicks off during National Small Business Week and includes a series of in-person workshops and classes for small business owners. Classes will focus on key topics such as maintaining strong personal credit, accessing capital, and managing budgets. 

"Empowering businesses is at the core of our mission, and the Launch and Grow HOPE Inside program is designed to provide small business owners with the training and coaching they need to bring their ideas to fruition," said CIT Chairwoman and Chief Executive Officer Ellen Alemany. "We're pleased to provide participating women the opportunity to grow, develop and pursue their passions through this rewarding program."

"We are pleased to expand our partnership with CIT to help women entrepreneurs to achieve sustainable success," said Operation HOPE's Founder, Chairman and CEO, John Hope Bryant. "Our collaborative efforts will arm participants with the tools they need to thrive. Building and maintaining good credit is an absolute essential in this process so that the 'woman behind the business' is truly empowered."

The Launch and Grow initiative is a HOPE Inside programming model created by Operation HOPE to provide no-cost financial empowerment coaching and education to small businesses.

Throughout the next 18 months, the program will provide over 400 women with tools and resources to cultivate their small businesses. In addition, the New York program will include a network of program partners to include Mastercard, the Francine A. LeFrak Foundation, STRIVE, and the Mayor's Fund to Advance New York City. These partners, along with CIT representatives, will provide their expertise and insights along the journey. The Los Angeles program is expected to begin in the summer.

The New York and Los Angeles cohorts will culminate with an "Ideas into Outcomes" business plan competition that will provide participants with the opportunity to showcase their plans and skillsets before a panel of distinguished judges. CIT will award the top three winners seed money to advance their business goals.

Individuals can access the content and resources by visiting and engage on social media by following #LaunchAndGrow.

About CIT
CIT is a leading national bank focused on empowering businesses and personal savers with the financial agility to navigate their goals. CIT Group Inc. (NYSE: CIT) is a financial holding company with over a century of experience, approximately $50 billion in assets as of March 31, 2019, and operates a principal bank subsidiary, CIT Bank, N.A. (Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender). The company's commercial banking segment includes commercial financing, real estate financing, equipment financing, factoring and railcar financing. CIT's consumer banking segment includes its national online bank, CIT Bank, and a Southern California branch bank, OneWest Bank. Discover more at

About Operation HOPE
Since 1992, Operation HOPE has been moving America from civil rights to "silver rights" with the mission of making free enterprise and capitalism work for the underserved—disrupting poverty for millions of low and moderate-income families across the nation. Through our community uplift model, HOPE Inside, which received the 2016 Innovator of the Year recognition by American Banker magazine, Operation HOPE has served more than 4 million individuals and directed more than $3.2 billion in economic activity into disenfranchised communities—turning check cashing customers into banking customers, renters into homeowners, small business dreamers into small business owners, minimum wage workers into living wage consumers, and uncertain disaster victims into financially empowered disaster survivors. Project 5117 is our multi-year four-pronged approach to combating economic inequality that aims to improve financial literacy, increase business role models and business internships for youth in underserved communities, and stabilize the American dream by boosting FICO scores. Operation HOPE recently received its fourth consecutive 4-star charity rating for fiscal management and commitment to transparency and accountability by the prestigious non-profit evaluator, Charity Navigator. For more information: Follow Operation HOPE on Twitter and Facebook @operationhope.

Olivia Weiss

Shalon Bell



Cision View original content to download multimedia: