Targeted support to small businesses in Greater Kalamazoo

Opening New Doors capital campaign

The Can-Do Kitchen's Opening New Doors capital campaign will assist CDK in relocating to a larger, more central location and allow for the addition of mixed-use incubator resources beyond CDK’s current food business program. Can-Do Kitchen is changing its name to Can-Do Kalamazoo and quadrupling its commercial kitchen in a new location, where it will also host a co-working space, offices for tenants, classrooms, and events.
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SBA Small Business Awards

Do you or someone you know have what it takes to become America’s “Small Business Person of the Year” for 2022? If so, the U.S. Small Business Administration wants to hear from you. 

The SBA’s Michigan District Office is accepting nominations for its 2022 National and Michigan Small Business Week Awards, including the annual Small Business Person of the Year award. Nominate someone you know before Jan. 11, 2022.

The awards will be presented at the Annual Michigan Celebrates Small Business gala on May 2, 2022, in East Lansing. For more information: Catherine.gase@sba.gov.

MRLA Launches Relief Grants

The Michigan Restaurant & Lodging Association (MRLA) has created a $409 million fund in the Michigan Treasury to aid businesses that were severely impacted by pandemic related restrictions and closures. To qualify for a grant, an afflicted business must demonstrate a decline in total sales in 2020 in relation to their 2019 sales, including any revenue received via forgiven Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans or Restaurant Revitalization Funds.

What businesses qualify?

An afflicted business is any business that is not tax exempt under that Internal Revenue Code, is not a government entity, and is one of the following:

  • A food service establishment
  • A hotel or bed and breakfast
  • An entertainment venue
  • An exercise facility
  • A recreation facility or place of public amusement
  • A cosmetologist, barber, cosmetology shop or barber shop
  • A nursery or nursery dealer
  • An athletic trainer

The Michigan Department of Treasury must post applications by March 1, 2022 and all applications must be received by April 1, 2022.

Get Into the New Year’s Spirit with All This Good News

Interested in taking your own business idea to the next level? Apply for the February cohort of First Path!

This program is for you if you fit at least one of the following descriptions:

  • I am someone who has a business ideaeither fully formed or just starting to take shapeand want to…
    • have accountability to get my idea launched.
    • brainstorm my idea and see if it is the path I should follow.
    • define and/or redefine my business idea.
  • I am someone who already has a business and want to…
    • take the next step in my start-up business journey.
    • pivot and shift my focus into other avenues.
    • expand my current offerings and try something new.

City of Kalamazoo programs through the United Way

The City of Kalamazoo is still offering programs through United Way for small business owners. Click the buttons below to learn more about the programs and their eligibility requirements.

Small businesses in the City of Kalamazoo area may be eligible for reimbursement of up to $2,500 for health and human safety costs associated with COVID-19. Applications have reopened and grant funds can be used for COVID-19 related costs. For more information, contact Molly Trueblood.

S.T.E.M program

Michigan STEM Forward, a statewide program that matches students attending Michigan colleges with internship opportunities, is now accepting applications from companies & students to participate!

  • Up to 50% of the intern’s wages are matched
  • Company can be in any industry but all internships must be STEM-focused.

Southwest Michigan PTAC 2022 Class Schedule

The Southwest Michigan PTAC team is ready to assist you with your government contracting needs.

This training is available to businesses in Berrien, Branch, Calhoun, Cass, Kalamazoo, St. Joseph, and Van Buren counties of Southwest Michigan.

Make Connections

Find local business owners and resources that will help you advance your business.

Fund

Find capital resources for new, growing, or troubled businesses.

Grow

How to take your business to the next level. Learn how to grow your business.

Mentoring

Free advice for business owners. Find your mentor through our network.

Plan

Resources to help you develop a business and marketing plan.

Research

Sources for primary and secondary research about your business market.

Start

Get solid advice for launching a new business or idea.