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WJR Business Beat with Jeff Sloan: Raising Money from Grant and Contest Programs (Episode 175)

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StartupNation inspires, educates and consistently attracts entrepreneurs and small business owners from Main Street America who want to be their own bosses and live the American Dream.
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For those of us in the entrepreneurial community trying to take a swing at creating and growing a successful new startup company, we know all too well how hard it is to raise the necessary early funding required to get a business off the ground.

On this morning’s WJR Business beat, Jeff discusses grant and contest opportunities available to entrepreneurs in the state of Michigan who are looking for funding.

Tune in below to learn more about these grant and contest opportunities!

Tune in to News/Talk 760 AM WJR weekday mornings at 7:11 a.m. for the WJR Business Beat. Listeners outside of the Detroit area can listen live HERE.

Are you an entrepreneur with a great story to share? If so, contact us at [email protected] and we’ll feature you on an upcoming segment of the WJR Business Beat!

Good morning!

For those of us in the entrepreneurial community trying to take a swing at creating and growing a successful new startup company, we know all too well how hard it is to raise the necessary early funding required to get a business off the ground.

Look, let’s face it: it’s hard to get a bank loan if you’re a startup. Maybe you don’t qualify because you don’t have the ability to show financial performance yet for your business because it’s simply too early. And you need that bank loan to pay for the marketing to kickstart the business and then drive the financial performance that would allow you to demonstrate to the bank that you qualify.

Well, it can be maddening.

How about raising angel funding? My favorite way to finance a startup, again while it’s the best source in my view, funding goes only to a few businesses specifically to those that are fast growth in nature, and for which an exit event is required in order to drive a return back to investors.

Again, businesses that qualify for this type of funding, while it’s a great source of funding for those that do, only a small percentage of the overall startup population even qualifies. So where to turn. Well, if you aren’t in position to get a bank loan or qualify for angel investment, how about trying some of the grant and contest opportunities available to entrepreneurs in the state of Michigan and across the country?

For example, one such opportunity right here in our region going on now, check out the Lansing Mainstreet Program Open for Business contest. It was launched in 2015 and has been run every year since. It offers businesses in this case, those based in the designated Lansing Main Street District, a chance to compete and win up to $28,000 per company in grants to assist with business development or expansion.

And of course, that’s just one example. There are others: the MADC just did an elevator pitch competition in December, where they handed out $425,000 to businesses in the state of Michigan.

Now look, one key hallmark of successful entrepreneurs is that we are resourceful. Can’t get a bank loan? Don’t qualify for angel or venture investment? Try something else. Try entering a grant program or a contest that offers cash rewards as a source to kickstart your great business idea.

I’m Jeff Sloan, founder and CEO of StartupNation.com, and that’s today’s Business Beat on the Great Voice of the Great Lakes, WJR.

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