BALTIMORE, May 31, 2023 — M&T Bank launched today a new small business initiative inside its Federal Hill branch in downtown Baltimore, where a pop-up shop will feature a rotating lineup of minority- and women-owned retailers through mid-August. Through Aug. 18, seven different Baltimore-area small business customers of M&T Bank will occupy the free space inside the Federal Hill branch to showcase their brands, reach different audiences and expand their customer base.

The first business to occupy the space is Queen’s Temple Handmade, a body care business specializing in eco-conscious handmade bar soaps, raw shea body butters, sugar scrubs, hair growth elixir, and aromatherapy products. Queen’s Temple Handmade will be in the Federal Hill Spotlight Shop through June 9, 2023.

Other Federal Hill Spotlight Shop occupants will include:

  • Sweet Fortune’s Unlimited (June 12-16 and Aug. 14-18)
  • Hon’s Honey (June 19-23)
  • Kiki Thunda Cosmetics (June 26-30 and July 5-7)
  • AppleCore Bake Shoppe (July 10-14 and July 17-21)
  • Sunday Morning Roasting Company (July 24-28 and July 31-Aug. 4)
  • Althea’s Almost Famous (Aug. 7-11)

This is not the first time M&T Bank offered its Spotlight Shop concept to its small business customers in Greater Baltimore. M&T initially launched its Spotlight Shop in 2019 in a mobile retail kiosk located along Pratt Street in the Inner Harbor. Twelve different businesses rotated through that shop over six months. 

(l-r) Charlyn Nater-Severino, Director, Baltimore Main Streets, Mayor’s Office of Small, Minority and Women Business, City of Baltimore and Richelle Johnson, Owner, Queen’s Temple Hand, and M&T Spotlight Business

Photos: Paris Brown

In addition to the Federal Hill Spotlight Shop, M&T’s mobile kiosk also will be in Baltimore on June 3 for the Charles Street Promenade Pedestrian Takeover.

The launch of M&T’s in-branch Spotlight Shop comes during National Small Business Month, a time to celebrate and support small businesses locally and across the U.S. As the top small-business lender in Baltimore and one of the top 10 nationwide, M&T created this new initiative as part of its efforts to amplify the economic impact of small businesses. Over the past 25 years, small businesses have generated about two-thirds of all jobs added to the national economy.

Several Baltimore-area businesses also are part of M&T’s online Spotlight Shop. The Spotlight Shop online platform promotes more than 170 small businesses across M&T’s footprint, drives traffic to their website, and celebrates them on social media and through blog content. The expansion of the Spotlight Shop program reinforces M&T’s longstanding commitment to small businesses. 

Small businesses interested in being featured in the M&T Spotlight Shop can learn more and apply at

Baltimore Times
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