Print Friendly and PDF

July 15: Detroit ‘10,000 Small Businesses’ Participants Outpacing National Economy, Driving Regional Job Growth

Detroit ‘10,000 Small Businesses’ Participants Outpacing National Economy, Driving Regional Job Growth

Revenue and job creation among Detroit businesses that participated in the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Initiative is outpacing the national average, according to a new study released by Babson College. The study surveyed 2,300 of the nearly 5,000 small businesses across the country that participated in the program.

In metro Detroit, 125 small businesses have completed the program through Wayne State University. Of those, more than 70 percent reported increased revenue six months after graduating from the program, compared to 67 percent nationally. In addition, over 50 percent of survey participants said they created new jobs six months after graduating, compared to 46 percent of program participants nationally, demonstrating the program’s critical importance in strengthening the state and region’s economy.

As part of its effort to support local businesses, the Detroit Regional Chamber served as a regional launch partner of the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC) and Goldman Sachs in 2013, promoting the initiative and recruiting local businesses to apply. To read the full report, click here.

FirstMerit Bank Receives Presidential Award for Work in Advancing U.S. Exports

The Detroit Regional Chamber congratulates Chamber member FirstMerit Bank as a recipient of the President’s “E” Award, the highest recognition a U.S. company can receive for contributing to the expansion of U.S. exports. In presenting the award, U.S. Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker said FirstMerit played a significant role in helping the United States reach an all-time high in exports last year through its international banking division, spurring economic growth and job creation.

A key partner in supporting regional business growth, FirstMerit Bank’s financial services provide the necessary tools for businesses looking to expand in new markets, creating jobs in Southeast Michigan and solidifying the state and the region’s economic leadership across the globe. Click here to read the full release. FirstMerit Michigan is led by chairman and CEO Sandy Pierce, a former chair of the Chamber’s Board of Directors and current Chamber Board member.

Deadline Approaching for Hatch Detroit Business Contest, July 24

Hatch Detroit’s deadline to apply for a $50,000 grant to help launch a new business in Detroit, Highland Park or Hamtramck is quickly approaching. Participants in the Comerica Bank Hatch Detroit contest must download and fill out an application before July 24. The goal of the contest is to inspire local entrepreneurs and support the regional economy through business development. The top 10 semifinalists will be announced on Aug. 13. For more information, visit

Inforum’s Rachele Downs on Startgrid: Great Leadership Can Inspire Innovation

Fostering a culture of innovation sets great leaders apart from the pack, according to Rachele Downs, vice president of entrepreneurial strategies for Detroit-based Inforum. Downs is sharing her secrets for business success with local entrepreneurs as part of Startgrid Detroit’sAsk Me Anything” video series. Check out Downs’ segment as she explains how investing in professional development and self-awareness are critical components to an organization’s cohesion.

Downs’ segment is the second in a series of informational videos filmed earlier this year after entrepreneurs submitted questions to regional thought leaders on myriad topics via the Detroit Regional Chamber’s online community platform this past January.

Click here to view additional “Ask Me Anything” videos, or visit