DETROIT— LaunchDETROIT, a micro-loan program developed by Rotary District 6400, will host an informational open house for Detroit entrepreneurs and small businesses on July 29. The event will be held at Saint Gabriel Catholic Church, 8118 W. Vernor Ave. in Detroit.
LaunchDETROIT is a multi-pronged program that offers qualifying entrepreneurs a combination of free business training, micro loans of $1,000 to $2,500, assigned business mentors and networking opportunities.
“We awarded our first micro-loans to 13 entrepreneurs in January, and we are currently accepting online applications to select the next group of entrepreneurs,” said Rotarian Lawrence Wright, president of LaunchDETROIT. “Our mission is to support and develop small businesses in under-resourced communities in the Detroit region.”
Wright says LaunchDETROIT has received national attention and is being documented by Rotary International, the world’s largest service organization headquartered in Evanston, Illinois.
Qualifying applicants receive business training provided by instructors from Baker College during six three-hour classes, held once a week. Upon completion of business training and business plan presentations, the LaunchDETROIT selection committee interviews candidates for the micro-loans and assigns a business mentor to each.
Successful candidates must have a business product or service that will enable them to repay their loan within one year through weekly installments.
Additional information will be provided at the open house go be held from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Guests will also have an opportunity to talk with some of the entrepreneurs currently participating in the program. The online application is available at LaunchDetroit.org, and the deadline to apply is August 22.