The New Economy Initiative, Detroit Economic Growth Corporation, and the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan embarked on a bold mission three years ago when they launched NEIdeas; to help support the existing businesses of Detroit in the dramatically changing landscape. Three years later, their ground breaking competitive grant program, NEIdeas highlights the diversity of Detroit’s small businesses and their owners all while giving needed support to them. Over the last two years, the New Economy Initiative and its NEIdeas challenge has granted more than $1 million in cash awards to more than 60 existing businesses. Nearly 1,200 small businesses applied to the challenge in 2014 and 2015. Applicants have included all manner of businesses, from bakers to manufacturers. Some 70% of winners have been minority-owned businesses; 64% were women-owned businesses, and 53% were both woman- and minority-owned businesses. The businesses range in age from 3 to 93 years old.
Now is your chance to join these great community change makers and entrepreneurs. NEideas is currently accepting applications for their final round of funding now through June 1, 2016. The $10k Challenge -provides awards of $10,000 each to 30 businesses that gross under $750,000 annually with ideas to grow The $100k Challenge provides awards of $100,000 each to 2 businesses that gross over $750,000 and under $5 million annually with ideas to grow ‘big.’
What makes NEIdeas different from other programs like Hatch is that those that win and those that do not win all benefit from the NEIdeas network. In this network, every applicant is given access to further opportunities in the entrepreneurial ecosystem. NEIdeas All-Applicant Assistance offers catered matchmaking to small business service providers, workshops around business growth topics; and connections to other applicants and NEIdeas Ambassadors.
For more information on NEIdeas and to apply please visit www.neideasdetroit.org. or call (844) NEI-DEAS.