Detroit, Mar. 9, 2023 – Aspiring entrepreneurs have submitted their businesses to compete in the 2023 Comerica Hatch Detroit Contest by TechTown, and the process to narrow down the top applicants is now underway! It will soon be the public’s turn to participate and support entrepreneurs seeking to open their own brick-and-mortar retail businesses in Detroit, Hamtramck or Highland Park.
Today, TechTown announced that tickets are now available for two key contest events: the Top 10 Reveal and the Comerica Hatch Detroit Contest Hatch Off. Tickets and details for each event can be found at HatchDetroit.com. The Top 10 Reveal will be held at TechTown Detroit on April 4, while the Hatch Off will take place at the Wayne State Industry Innovation Center on April 26.
“This is the chance for our community to get a glimpse at what the future of the city’s small business landscape could look like,” said Christianne Malone, assistant vice president for economic development at Wayne State University and chief program officer of TechTown Detroit. “We’ve reimagined the Top 10 Reveal event and are excited to showcase these incredible entrepreneurs, then let the community decide which business they want to see open in Detroit, Hamtramck or Highland Park.”
The four-month contest, which kicked off in early January, includes two rounds of public voting – Top 10 and Top 4 – allowing the community to vote for their favorite business to win the $100,000 grand prize from Comerica Bank, as well as a package of accounting, legal, IT and public relations support from TechTown and their partners.
“At this stage in the contest, it’s vital for these budding entrepreneurs to debut their business concepts in front of the community that could potentially be frequenting their businesses once they open,” said Linda Nosegbe, Comerica Bank National Community Impact Manager. “These two events give our top candidates the chance to debut their business plans while also providing the greatest opportunity for the public’s voice to be heard in which business they want to see join their community.”
TOP 10 REVEAL
April 4; 5-8 p.m.; TechTown Detroit
Over 150 applications were submitted to the Comerica Hatch Detroit Contest, and on April 4 the Top 10 business concepts will be revealed.
Attendees of the Top 10 Reveal will get to know the 10 semifinalists via a fireside chat from 5-5:45 p.m. followed by an open house from 6-8 p.m. where they can mix and mingle with the entrepreneurs. The event will feature a cash bar with complimentary small bites provided by Hatch alumni businesses. Tickets are free at HatchDetroit.com with a suggested donation to support Hatch Detroit and TechTown.
Public voting to narrow down the semifinalists from 10 to four will begin April 5 at noon and run through April 12 at noon. Community members can vote for their favorite businesses once per day by visiting HatchDetroit.com. Additional opportunities to vote in person will be announced at a later date.
COMERICA HATCH DETROIT CONTEST HATCH OFF
April 26; 6-9 p.m.; Wayne State Industry Innovation Center
The final four contestants will have a chance to make one last pitch, “Shark Tank-style,” in front of a panel of judges and attendees at the Comerica Hatch Detroit Contest Hatch Off. A winner will be crowned and receive the $100,000 grand prize, courtesy of Comerica Bank. The event will feature a cash bar with complimentary small bites provided by Hatch alumni businesses. Tickets cost $25 and can be purchased at HatchDetroit.com.
Public voting for the Top 4 will begin April 24 at noon and run through the completion of the pitch competition at the Hatch Off. Community members can vote for the business they want to see win it all once per day at HatchDetroit.com. New this year, the Hatch Off will be live streamed at HatchDetroit.com and the Hatch Detroit Facebook page, so that those unable to attend in person can still participate in crowning the winner.
KEY COMERICA HATCH DETROIT DATES:
April 4: Top 10 Reveal
April 5: Top 10 voting begins at noon
April 12: Top 10 voting ends at noon
April 13: Top 4 announced
April 24: Top 4 voting begins at noon
April 26: Hatch Off with winner announcement
Comerica Bank, a subsidiary of Comerica Incorporated, has served Michigan longer than any other bank with a continuous presence dating back over 173 years to its Detroit founding in 1849. It is the largest bank employer in metro Detroit and has approximately 4,500 employees (FTE) statewide. With one of the largest banking center networks in Michigan, Comerica nurtures lifelong relationships with unwavering integrity and financial prudence. Comerica positively impacts the lives of Michigan residents by helping customers be successful, providing financial support that assists hundreds of charitable organizations, and actively participating in Detroit’s downtown revitalization. Comerica Incorporated (NYSE: CMA) is a financial services company strategically aligned by three business segments: The Commercial Bank, The Retail Bank, and Wealth Management. Follow on Facebook: www.facebook.com/Comerica, Twitter: @ComericaBank and Instagram: @comerica_bank. Download new Comerica Bank corporate logo.
TechTown is a nonprofit business service organization that provides programs, education and resources for early- to growth-stage small businesses and tech entrepreneurs. By building bridges for entrepreneurs to succeed, TechTown is accelerating an inclusive economy for Detroit and Southeast Michigan. Since 2007, TechTown has supported 5,371 companies, which created 2,277 jobs and raised more than $385 million in startup and growth capital. For more information, visit techtowndetroit.org.
Hatch Detroit supports both existing and new retail initiatives in the cities of Detroit, Highland Park and Hamtramck. Hatch Detroit, now part of TechTown Detroit’s small business services programming, was founded in 2011 to give residents and aspiring entrepreneurs an opportunity to have a voice in neighborhood retail development and joined TechTown in 2022. Hatch Detroit provides funding, exposure and mentoring in support of its alumni entrepreneurs. With support from Hatch Detroit, 50 alumni have opened businesses. They employ over 500 people and have invested over $13 million in economic development. To learn more, visit hatchdetroit.com.
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Franco: Christina Quirk; (248) 342-9530; firstname.lastname@example.org
Comerica Bank: Matt Barnhart; (313) 222-3694; email@example.com
TechTown Detroit: Kimberly Palter; (313) 483-1326; firstname.lastname@example.org