‘Build to Scale’ program awards grants to TechTown Detroit, Automation Alley – CBS Detroit

(CBS DETROIT)– Huge federal grants have been awarded to programs that fuel innovation. One of the winners is Techtown, right here in Midtown Detroit.

The visit on Thursday by U.S. Assistant Commerce Secretary for Economic Development Alejandra Castillo brought great news for tech entrepreneurs.

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“50 organizations from 26 states will receive grants totaling $ 36.5 million as part of the 2021 Large-Scale Construction Challenge,” US Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Alejandra Castillo said.

The grants that are administered annually by the EDA aim to accelerate technological entrepreneurship by increasing inclusive access to business support.

This year, TechTown Detroit received a Capital Challenge grant of $ 400,000 which aims to increase capital and start-up in under-represented communities.

“Especially for a predominantly African American city, having this kind of support is crucial,” said Marlo Rencher, director of technology-based programs at TechTown Detroit.

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“This grant aims to identify, train and support 200 new angel investors who are women and people from black and brown communities, because we know that if we can increase their networks, this capital will go to the entrepreneurs who need it most.” , TechTown said. CEO Ned Staebler

Staebler says minorities and aspiring women entrepreneurs often don’t receive the same investment opportunities as other groups, so this grant that will expand the angel investor base is essential.

“It’s really essential because it lets us know that our voices have been heard,” Rencher said.

Automation Alley in Troy received the Venture Challenge grant, which will be used to digitize manufacturing in Michigan

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