Hatch Detroit competition opens window for applications, doubles prize to $100K

Sister Pie. Batch Brewing Company. La Feria.

These are among a group of businesses that have opened in Detroit this past decade, often celebrated and high in name-recognition.

They also have something else in common: Each is a $50,000 grand prize winner of the annual Comerica Hatch Detroit small business contest.

Now in its ninth year, the competition has once again opened its submission window for applications. Entrepreneurs have until Wednesday, July 31, to apply.

Unlike past years however, this year’s competition will see the grand prize double from $50,000 to $100,000, due to increased investment from Hatch Detroit sponsor Comerica Bank.

Comerica is also doubling its organizational support for Hatch Detroit, increasing its donation from $20,000 to $40,000.

"The Comerica Hatch Detroit Contest is a catalyst for economic development in Detroit's neighborhoods," says Vittoria Katanski, executive director of Hatch Detroit.

"Independent retail helps define the character and personality of city neighborhoods. Together with partners such as Comerica Bank, Hatch Detroit can continue to support independent retail while introducing 10 of the year's best business concepts."

The competition is open to entrepreneurs planning on opening a brick-and-mortar business in the cities of Detroit, Hamtramck, or Highland Park.

Following the submission process, Hatch Detroit will announce a Top Ten of semifinalists which, through a process of public voting, will be winnowed to the Top Four finalists. The Top Four will then open to a second round of public voting, the results of which are taken into account during the final Shark Tank-esque Hatch Off event later this year.

In addition to the $100,000 grand prize, winners receive pro bono business services such as accounting and legal help.

Previous winners of the Comerica Hatch Detroit Contest include Hugh, La Feria, Batch Brewing Company, Sister Pie, Live Cycle Delight, Meta Physica Massage, Baobab Fare, and Toma Detroit.

Visit the Comerica Hatch Detroit Contest online to apply today.

Got a development news story to share? Email MJ Galbraith here or send him a tweet @mikegalbraith.

Read more articles by MJ Galbraith.

MJ Galbraith is Model D's development news editor. Follow him on Twitter @mikegalbraith.
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