ACE partners with Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses and the City of Atlanta to provide more capital to Main Street Businesses 

Grace Fricks, ACE Founder and CEO, is pictured with Cristina Shapiro (left), Vice President of Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses, and Theia Washington Smith (right), Director for the City of Atlanta's Women's Entrepreneurship Initiative.


Pictured are Ed Baker, Atlanta Business Chronicle Publisher, Grace Fricks and David Fox, Managing Director of Goldman Sachs in Atlanta.
Grace Fricks and Mayor Kasim Reed

It is a great time for entrepreneurs in the City of Atlanta. Mayor Kasim Reed announced the launch of  the City of Atlanta's Women's Entrepreneurship Initiative (WEI) and David Fox, Managing Director, Goldman Sach's Atlanta office, announced a $3MM investment to ACE
at a press conference held Tuesday. WEI, which will be housed in the city's iconic flatiron building, is an incubator designed to help accelerate and grow women owned small businesses. The program will accept 15 women annually. Theia Washington Smith is the Director for WEI and board members include Carol Tome', Home Depot CFO; Kat Cole, Cinnabon President; Claire "Yum" Arnold, Leapfrog Services CEO; and Grace Fricks, founder and CEO of ACE who is working with both programs. 

Through the investment of $3MM in ACE, by Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses (10KSB), more Main Street businesses will have access to much needed and hard to come by capital. Fricks also announced ACE's commitment to provide each of the women accepted into the WEI program capital for their business needs. For the full article published by the AJC, please click here.

Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses and ACE host luncheon and lending opportunity conversation 

Ed Baker, Publisher of Atlanta Business Chronicle, moderates the luncheon conversation with Mayor Kasim Reed, Grace Fricks, and ACE Borrower/Goldman Sachs 10KSB Scholar Carla Carson, owner of Anytime Fitness in Decatur.

Immediately following Tuesday's press conference, ACE and Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses hosted a Luncheon and Conversation at the Commerce Club. Ed Baker, publisher of the Atlanta Business Chronicle moderated the discussion with remarks by the Honorable Mayor Kasim Reed. Participating in the discussion were Grace Fricks, who explained how ACE is currently meeting the needs of small businesses that cannot access traditional forms of capital; ACE borrower, Carla Carson, who shared her story of success after receiving capital from ACE- once she had someone believe in her; and Mayor Kasim Reed. 

Baker asked Mayor Reed "Why now? Why the emphasis on women entrepreneurs? Is it because you have your own daughter?" Mayor Reed replied, "Absolutely- my daughter is making me a better man. When I look at her, I think about her future." 
Carla Carson, ACE borrower and Goldman Sachs 10KSB scholar, is the owner of Anytime Fitness in Decatur. She is pictured here with her husband, General Carson, and Mayor Kasim Reed.

Carson, owner of Anytime Fitness in Decatur, is also a 10,000 Small Businesses Scholar of the 12-week Babson College curriculum. Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses is an initiative designed to help small businesses create jobs and economic growth by providing entrepreneurs with business support and access to capital. Small businesses in Atlanta, and all of Georgia, have the opportunity to apply to the Babson College education program. So far, six Georgia business owners have completed the program. 


*10,000 Small Businesses at Babson College is accepting applications on a rolling basis. 


*To apply for a loan through ACE, and to find out more information about ACE's Business Advisory Services, please visit our website at 


More conversations: 

10KSB Scholars Ralph Herrera, owner of Lanza Group LLC; Carla Carson, owner of Anytime Fitness; and Ted Cummings, owner of Onyx MMS Group

Rodney Sampson, OHUB Founder, and David Lightburn, Atlanta Tech Village Co-Founder

Carrie Conway, Senior Program Officer,Woodruff Foundation; David Eidson, President, Coxe Curry & Associates; and Dorothy Yates Kirkley, immediate past chair of ACE Board of Directors.  

Theia Washington Smith, Director of the Women's Entrepreneurship Initiative and  Bradley Jensen, Principal Partner of Microsoft Business Emporium

David Lightburn; Cristina Shapiro, Vice President of Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses; and David Nethero, Managing Director, Golden Seeds; and Susan Nethero, Managing Director of Golden Seeds and ACE Advisory Council Chair 

ACE Board Chair Courtney I. Smith, Vice President of Community Development, PNC Bank and Gerard Gibbons, UPS President, US Sales 

Martha Zoller, State Policy Director, Office of United States Senator David Perdue, and Lynn Thogersen, CFO, Georgia Mental Health Consumer Network, ACE Board of Directors

Candy Moore, Senior Vice President/SE Community Development Manager, Wells Fargo, and Nzinga Shaw, Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer, Atlanta Hawks and Philips Arena, WEI Board of Directors

David Fox, Managing Director, Goldman Sachs Atlanta office, and Stephanie Blank