June 24, 2009
The Kauffman Foundation is pleased to be working in cooperation with Dr. Ed Montgomery, named this week as executive director of the White House Council on Automotive Communities and Workers. The White House is showing its support for Kauffman programs in Detroit that are expected to create 1,200 new companies and nearly 5,000 new jobs in the next three years, as well as save as many as 20,000 existing jobs in minority-owned companies that supply products and services to the automotive and other industries. The Kauffman entrepreneurial training programs in Detroit are being funded by the New Economy Initiative, which consists of a consortium of ten foundations in southeast Michigan. Dr. Montgomery has released the following statement in recognition of today's "FastTrac to the Future" event in Detroit, where more than 500 aspiring entrepreneurs will begin a new journey to take charge of their own economic destinies:
"During these tough economic times, we must come together to find new, innovative ways to save and create jobs while transforming our economy for the long term. As part of this effort the President is committed to building partnerships with and engaging foundations, NGOs and the public in ways that leverage federal efforts and will strengthen our economy and society for generations to come. This event today has brought together a unique alliance of foundations determined to build on the spirit of American innovation and committed to transforming our manufacturing sector to create new opportunities for the people and communities in the region. This program has the potential to create thousands of jobs, spur growth of small businesses, help auto suppliers diversify and make sure minority businesses fully participate in the new green economy. I want to commend and personally thank the foundations, local officials, and individuals who have come together to form this alliance, and I look forward to working with them in the months ahead."
Revitalizing Detroit One New Business at a Time
Kauffman Foundation helps displaced workers start new careers as entrepreneurs
Joy Torchia, Kauffman Foundation
(816) 932-1045 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Kelly Rohrs, Edelman
(212) 819-4852 or email@example.com
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (June 24, 2009) — The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation today launched a groundbreaking economic revitalization initiative with a free, daylong training program to assist former auto workers and advance entrepreneurship in Detroit. "FastTrac to the Future" is the first step of a $9.5 million program funded by the New Economy Initiative for Southeast Michigan (NEI) to reenergize and revitalize Detroit's crippled economy.
Through a series of entrepreneurial training and learning programs, the Kauffman Foundation is guiding and leading displaced workers as they recover and rebound from the challenging economy. Over the next three years, the Kauffman-run programs are expected to help save 20,000 jobs, assist in the creation of roughly 1,200 new small businesses that create nearly 5,000 new jobs, and generate almost $300 million in spending power for the local economy.
"The goal of this partnership is to help communities in southeast Michigan make fundamentally important changes to restart and reinvigorate the economy," said Carl Schramm, Kauffman Foundation president and CEO. "With guidance from our Foundation and from our partners with the New Economy Initiative, these communities will be well-positioned to respond to and serve tomorrow’s market needs, advance new industries, compete globally and create new jobs."
More than 4,650 people in the Detroit area are expected to participate in the Kauffman programs, which prepare individuals to build successful businesses in the new economy. All programs are being funded through NEI, a consortium of ten Michigan foundations to fuel the state's economy.
"This event today has brought together a unique alliance of foundations determined to build on the spirit of American innovation and committed to transforming our manufacturing sector to create new opportunities for the people and communities in the region," said Dr. Ed Montgomery, director of Recovery for Auto Communities and Workers for the White House. "The President is committed to building partnerships with and engaging foundations, NGOs and the public in ways that leverage federal efforts and will strengthen our economy and society for generations to come."
In addition to Detroit, the Kauffman Foundation is partnering with the Michigan’s Small Business and Technology Development Center (SBTDC) to help retrain displaced workers across the state of Michigan.
Some of the programs and services Kauffman is offering in Michigan include:
FastTrac® is a practical hands-on business development program designed to help entrepreneurs hone the skills needed to create, manage and grow a successful business.
Several FastTrac programs are being offered as part of this initiative:
- FirstStep FastTrac focuses on starting a microenterprise or small, home-based business.
- FastTrac NewVentureTM is designed for individuals who want to start a new business.
- FastTrac GrowthVentureTM is a program for existing business owners who want to stabilize their business during a challenging economy and position it for growth.
- FastTrac TechVentureTM is a course designed specifically for individuals and business owners who are pursuing a venture in a technology industry, such as information technology, biotechnology, life sciences, etc.
Urban Entrepreneur Partnership (UEP)
UEP targets displaced, minority workers and assists them in retooling and readapting their skills to explore opportunities in their industries.
The UEP Entrepreneurial Education model distinguishes itself from other programs through it comprehensive approach that combines one-to-one coaching with customized intensive business education, along with a "real time" data collection process. The data collected allows the UEP to assess business strengths and challenges, monitor business growth and developments, track outcomes, and report "real time" trends.
The iBridgeSM Network is an online community for sharing ideas, research and knowledge. The network provides a public, centralized source for unbiased information about early-stage technologies and inventions. Currently more than 77 universities are involved in the network and are learning about innovations being developed around the world.
Entrepreneur Postdoctoral Fellows
The Kauffman Foundation’s Postdoctoral Fellows program works with top postdoctoral researchers to create innovative technology companies. Selected candidates are mentored by entrepreneurs with science backgrounds, along with experts from the legal, business and financial communities to develop and commercialize the technologies in their laboratories.