Small businesses are the heart and soul of Detroit.

We have pulled together two lists of resources to support local businesses as we manage through these trying times together.

Small Business Resources

Small businesses are the heart and soul of Detroit. We have pulled together the below resources to help support local businesses as we manage through these trying times together. We will periodically update the site with additional relevant resources as they become available, so make sure to check back often.

Financial Resources

Programs & Resources Specific to COVID-19

  • The CARES Act has been created to help small businesses keep workers employed amid the pandemic and economic downturn. Known as the Paycheck Protection Program, the initiative provides 100% federally guaranteed loans to small businesses. Applications are now open and loans will be allocated on a first come, first serve basis. More details and the application can be found here.
    • The CARES Act created a new Employee Retention Tax Credit for employers who are closed, partially closed, or experiencing significant revenue losses as a result of COVID-19. 
  • Detroit-based, Autobooks launched its “Get Paid” campaign, providing a complimentary option for small businesses to easily accept digital payments and deposit the money directly into their current banking accounts. 
  • U.S. Small Business Administration is offering Economic Injury Disaster Loans up to $2 million in assistance for a small business. These loans can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue.
  • To help deliver the working capital that businesses need, Honeycomb is offering 45-day payment free periods, 6-month interest-only periods and reducing posting, success, and investor fees. They’re also streamlining their due diligence to connect businesses with local investors as quickly as possible. These loans are community funded via the Honeycomb crowdfunding platform.
  • The City of Cleveland has established an emergency working capital fund in order to help maintain the local business community. View the summary and application here.

General Anytime Use

  • U.S. Small Business Administration provides a number of loan resources for small businesses to utilize when starting, expanding or operating their businesses.
  • Companies can reach out directly to the Michigan Small Business Development Center for free and confidential 1:1 counseling for businesses.
  • The Michigan Economic Development Corporation works to increase the availability of capital for companies in Michigan at every stage of development. The MEDC can help connect your business with capital providers – federal grants, venture capitalists, banks, and others – as well as offer programs that can expand the reach of those capital providers.

Business Development

  • 96.3 WDVD and New Country 93.1 are offering complimentary marketing and advertising services on their stations through the We Are Open Detroit campaign. 
  • Metro Detroit’s Front Line Appreciation Group is purchasing meals from local restaurants to donate to local medical staffs. Interested restaurants can sign up here to participate. 
  • Stand for Small is a coalition comprised of more than 60 industry leaders offering educational resources, network connections, offers and mentorship opportunities to help address small business needs.
  • Airbnb recently launched Online Experiences– a new way for people to connect, travel virtually and earn income. Businesses can learn more and apply to Host here.
  • Waymark has partnered with Spectrum Reach to offer free, custom commercials to anyone in need.
  • Populace is selling bags of coffee with small businesses branded on the front. For each bag sold, they will be donating 50% of profits to the respective business.
  • Restaurants can support Detroit police, fire, EMS and healthcare workers by suppling meals while getting paid through the Feed the Frontlines program.
  • Detroit at Work has created a portal to connect temporary or long-term jobseekers with businesses that are hiring for temporary or long term team members. Businesses looking for employees can fill out this form.
  • Businesses interested in supporting FEMA’s response to COVID-19 may be eligible to join the Industry Liaison Program
  • Local news outlets are promoting businesses that remain open- submit your information to Detour Detroit, FOX 2, and WXYZ.
  • New websites including Tip Detroit and Detroit Food Updates have been created to inform the public how they can support their local favorites. If applicable, make sure to update your information on these sites.
  • Shopify is discounting their prices and making it easy for small businesses to start selling online, including selling digital gift cards and adding a local delivery option. 
  • Yelp is offering $25 million in Relief for Affected Small Businesses. Yelp will be using this money to waive advertising fees, offer free additional advertising and use of its products and services. 
  • The City of Detroit is offering free support to enable restaurants and cafés to transition to curbside pickup. Detroit restaurants can sign up to turn metered parking spaces in front of their buildings into free curbside pickup zones.
  • The City is also partnering with Forgotten Harvest to rescue and distribute excess food that meets these criteria to those experiencing food insecurity, in exchange for a tax deduction. Restaurants call fill out this form to participate. 
  • Carryout and delivery veteran Ali Beydoun of Sicily’s Pizza at 3554 Vernor Highway is personally offering restaurants assistance in learning the ropes of carryout and food delivery at (313) 554-0755.
  • Governor Whitmer signed an executive order on March 16, 2020 that expands unemployment benefits. Plain English descriptions of the changes made by the order can be found here. A fact sheet about claiming unemployment benefits can be found here.

Additional Business Counseling & Support

  • Detroit Means Business is an online resource hub created by the City of Detroit and dozens of other public and private partners to aid small businesses as they begin to reopen. 
  • Michigan Community Resources’ COVID-19 legal clinics are an opportunity for Detroit’s nonprofits, small businesses, and entrepreneurs to receive free legal advice during a 45-minute remote consultation with a volunteer attorney.
  • The Quicken Loans Community Fund Entrepreneurs in Residence are holding office hours for businesses owners to talk 1:1 and get support navigating and applying for various forms of assistance. 
  • Rapid Finance created a page to help small businesses find information about government financial relief programs, private sources of assistance, and resource guides to help navigate through the outbreak.
  • The Detroit Metro Convention & Visitors Bureau created a Facebook group to house tourism and hospitality support resources.
  • The Detroit Regional Chamber is here to help members navigate the evolving crisis with fact-based, timely information, and helpful business resources. Visit the Chamber’s COVID-19 Business Resource Center for more information. 
  • TechTown has developed and is maintaining a guide for Detroit area small businesses to navigate operations during this time. They are also offering free office hour consultations to answer specific business questions.
  • The American Society of Employers has pulled together FAQ’s for potential HR issues arising from the COVID-19.
  • OSHA has published a guidance on preparing workplaces for COVID-19.
  • U.S. Small Business Administration has organized a guidance for businesses and employers to plan and respond to COVID-19.
  • The Facebook group City of Detroit Business Owners’ Covid-19 Rapid Alerts is a great place to find latest updates and share ideas and resources.
  • Wayne County is running a survey to understand the economic impact of the virus. Please take a few minutes to fill it out.

Special thank you to our partners that have helped us compile this information including the Quicken Loans Community Fund, Visit Detroit, Hatch Detroit and the Detroit Regional Chamber.