Motor City Match awards over $1.2 Million in grants to further success of Detroit small businesses

  • Round 23 recipients include 19 new businesses and 8 existing businesses.
  • Motor City Match fuels new Detroit ventures, from a community-owned grocery store to the city’s only indoor playground and multiple health and wellness establishments.
  • In Round 23, 83% are minority-owned businesses; 70% are women-owned businesses; and 81% are businesses owned by Detroit residents.
  • One year ago, Motor City Match doubled its impact each round due to an influx of funding from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA)
  • Since receiving additional ARPA funding, more than $5.1 million in grants have been awarded through the program to new and existing businesses.


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Motor City Match Round 23 cash grant awardees with Mayor Duggan, City Council President Mary Sheffield, City Council Member Fred Durhal III and DEGC officials.


Mayor Mike Duggan and the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation (DEGC) awarded more than $1.2 million in grants to 27 Detroit businesses selected as recipients of Motor City Match’s Round 23 awards. The funding from this latest round will serve as a catalyst for business owners, enabling them to embark on exciting journeys with new brick-and-mortar storefronts and undergo essential physical improvements.

Nineteen new businesses will be located across 16 Detroit neighborhoods, including Cadillac Heights, Franklin Park, Milwaukee-Junction, Bagley and New Center. Among the new ventures are a community-owned grocery cooperative, Detroit’s only indoor playground, a general interest bookstore and multiple health and wellness storefronts, cafes and restaurants.

"When we started Motor City Match in 2015, a lot of people said we'd never find enough businesses wanting to open in Detroit to justify the program. Today, we have 150 that have opened, there are dozens more under construction and we've doubled the grants we give each quarter to meet demand,” said Duggan. “I'm so proud of today's recipients for chasing their dream of opening their own business in Detroit and of the work the Motor City Match team is doing to support them."

This funding cycle culminated in awarding $1,050,000 in grants to 19 promising new businesses, helping business owners achieve their dreams of establishing a physical presence within the city. The City’s commitment to supporting established businesses has been further evidenced by the allocation of $155,000 in grants to eight deserving enterprises for renovations.

It’s been nearly one year since Motor City Match doubled its grant pool from $500,000 to $1 million, starting with Round 20. The additional funds, made possible through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), allow business owners to embark on vital renovations and breathe new life into their current spaces. Since Round 20, Motor City Match has awarded over $5.1 million to Detroit entrepreneurs.

"Over the years I have witnessed firsthand the impact Motor City Match has had on the business community and entrepreneurship within the City of Detroit,” said Council President Mary Sheffield. “Not only are we creating a sustainable economy, but we are encouraging and supporting residents of our city to pursue their dreams while creating generational wealth and ownership for their families."

The program also offered awards to 49 more entrepreneurs in its Business Plan, Develop and Design tracks in addition to the grants. These awards offer essential support for Detroit businesses still working on their projects, including business services, training and one-on-one advising.

In total, 76 Detroit businesses representing all seven council districts received support from Motor City Match’s 23rd round.

“Motor City Match provides Detroit small businesses with essential resources that are an investment in our city’s economic future and testament to our belief in the untapped potential of every visionary entrepreneur,” said DEGC President and CEO Kevin Johnson, whose organization manages the Motor City Match program. “We are cultivating a thriving small business ecosystem that will help elevate our communities and solidify Detroit’s position in entrepreneurial excellence.”

Since 2015, Motor City Match has awarded more than 1,800 businesses, resulting in 150 new brick & mortar businesses currently operating throughout the city.

Motor City Match continues to grow Detroit’s small-business landscape

Combined with its other small business programming, DEGC is creating a sustainable small business environment that nurtures new concepts and ideas. Motor City Match offers business owners a wide range of assistance in five tracks Plan, Develop, Design, Cash and Restore. The program helps Detroit entrepreneurs plan, formalize, and launch their business by providing business planning classes, site-selection assistance, financial planning, legal aid, design services and gap funding.

Through 23 rounds of the program:

  • Total business open: 150
  • Total businesses under construction: 77
  • Total cash grants: $14.3 million
  • Total leveraged investment: $73.6 million
  • 82 percent are minority-owned businesses
  • 71 percent are women-owned businesses
  • 67 percent are businesses owned by Detroit residents
  • 1,846 total business served


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Mayor Duggan remarked how he remembers being at Round 1 of Motor City Match, and the fact that he looks forward to the Motor City Match Awards Ceremony each quarter.


Motor City Match Round 23 Cash awardees:  

  • Alagi Property LLC – $50,000
    • Fast casual Mediterranean infusion restaurant
    • 2801 E. McNichols
    • Cadillac Heights, District 3
  • Alexander Nicole Nail Lounge – $15,000
    • Provides a luxurious yet affordable beauty experience
    • 19323 Livernois
    • Bagley, District 2
  • BFame Boutique – $45,000
    • Fashionable retail clothing store
    • 10545 Joy
    • Aviation Sub, District 7
  • Beauti Kafe – $65,000
    • Innovative salon that combines a classically authenticated methodology of hair management with an opportunity to cultivate a new generation of hair specialists
    • 7446 Woodward, Suite 107
    • North End, District 5
  •  Dera Lee Productions – $35,000
    • Award-winning event production and design agency
    • 1312 Mt. Elliot
    • Islandview, District 5
  • Detroit People's Food Coop – $100,000
    • African American led, community-owned grocery cooperative
    • 8324 Woodward
    • North End, District 5
  • El Tijerazo, Co.– $60,000
    • Full-service salon for women–including nails, makeup, and hair fixtures.
    • 1515 Springwells
    • Springwells, District 6
  • Iyemoja – $45,000
    • Property acquisition company offering affordable housing through refurbished homes
    • 17602 Trinity
    • Holcomb, District 1
  • Kidz Kingdom – $85,000
    • Child care and party center; Detroit’s only indoor playground
    • 20035 Plymouth
    • Franklin Park, District 7
  • Maniac Mechanic – $65,000
    • An organization dedicated to teaching inner-city youth and adults the fundamentals of construction skilled trades
    • 13126 Harper
    • Outer Drive-Hayes, District 4
  • Michigan & Trumbull Pizza – $55,000
    • Detroit-style pizzeria serving unique, flavor-focused, pizzas using homemade, local and seasonal ingredients
    • 1331 Holden
    • Elijah McCoy, District 5
  • Next Chapter Books – $50,000
    • A general-interest new and secondhand bookstore
    • 16551 E. Warren
    • East English Village, District 4
  • Vamonos! – $55,000
    • Healthy eatery and creative space that’s committed to making healthy food accessible, affordable and sustainable
    • 4444 W. Vernor Hwy.
    • Central Southwest, District 6
  • The Backyard Beer Garden – $65,000
    • All-in-one beer garden, eatery and dog park
    • 2732 Chene
    • McDougall-Hunt, District 5
  • The Kitchen by Cooking with Que II – $50,000
    • Healthy food haven encouraging patrons to eat to live
    • 6329 W. 7 Mile
    • Bagley, District 2
  • Thompson Management Group of Michigan – $65,000
    • A full-service juice bar, community hub and event center
    • 10240 Whittier
    • Yorkshire Woods, District 4
  • Vibe Spa – $65,000
    • One-stop shop for self-therapy and beauty skincare needs
    • 7446 Woodward, Suite 109
    • North End, District 5
  • Wellness on the Rise – $30,000
    • Health and wellness spa to support mental health and medical issues
    • 3031 W. Grand, Suite 445
    • New Center, District 5
  • Morningside Café – $50,000
    • Coffee and entertainment cafe
    • 16369 E. Warren Avenue, Suite C
    • Morningside, District 4

Motor City Match Round 23 Restore awardees:  

  • Dexter Quality Cleaners – $25,000
    • 13201 Dexter Ave
    • Russell Woods, District 7
  • FAIRCLOTH boutique – $9,000
    • 8001 Kercheval Avenue Suite 101
    • West Village, District 5
  • Feline Curves – $8,000
    • 20411 Van Dyke
    • Sherwood, District 3
  • Harper Upholstery Workroom – $25,000
    • 14534 Harper Ave
    • Outer Drive-Hayes, District 4
  • Be Her – $25,000
    • 15715 East Warren Ave
    • Morningside, District 4
  • Krispy Addicts Clothing Boutique – $13,000
    • 19434 Livernois Ave
    • Sherwood Forest, District 2
  • Mix Bricktown – $25,000
    • 641 Beaubien Street
    • Downtown, District 5
    • 16800 West Warren Ave
    • Warren Ave. Community, District 7


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City Council Member Fred Durhal III, City Council President Mary Sheffield, Kidz Kingdom owner Danielle North, Mayor Mike Duggan and Sean Gray, DEGC VP of Small Business Services celebrating her $85,000 cash grant award to create Detroit's first indoor playground for children.


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Motor City Match Round 23 cash grant winners Denisse and Carlos Lopez, owners of Vamanos!, an eatery in Southwest Detroit with a focus on health and wellness.


About Motor City Match

Motor City Match is a unique partnership between the City of Detroit, the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation (DEGC), the Economic Development Corporation of the City of Detroit (EDC) and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Competitive financial assistance is supported by a broad partnership of Southeast Michigan community development financial institutions and corporations including, Bank of America, Fifth Third Bank, Ford Foundation, Hudson Webber Foundation, JPMorgan Chase & Co., Knight Foundation, The Kresge Foundation, New Economy Initiative and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. Motor City Match applications are available quarterly. More information is available at