Invest Detroit and Detroit Economic Growth Corporation (DEGC) announced the details surrounding PowerMoves@Detroit, a competitive business event that runs April 13-15 which will introduce local and nationally recruited minority entrepreneurs competing in pitch events and vying for $100,000 in direct prizes. This is a great opportunity for these business owners to increase their visibility among investors.

“Morgan Stanley is proud to sponsor this innovative program that will showcase the talent of minority entrepreneurs and present dynamic opportunities to investors,” said Carla Harris, Vice Chairman, Global Wealth Management, Managing Director and Senior Client Advisor at Morgan Stanley.  “The firm has a track record of introducing leading companies to both the public and private markets, and it is our privilege to support the participants in PowerMoves@Detroit and help them get exposure to a more robust investment environment.”

“There is nothing anywhere like what is going on right now in the city of Detroit. We have an explosion of activity from entrepreneurs here, some local and some coming in from around the world to take part in the unique opportunities we have here,” said Mayor Mike Duggan. “We will be rooting for our Detroit companies and will welcome those from New York, Boston, San Francisco and other places, inviting them to take a look around, and grow their firms here.”

PowerMoves@Detroit is part of a national effort by PowerMoves.NOLA, a national initiative of the New Orleans Startup Fund designed to increase the number of venture-backed minority businesses locally and nationally. The event is designed to address the under-representation of venture-backed minority startups.

Here is a little info on the competitions.

Morgan Stanley Power Pitch Competitions
Two pitch competitions will each feature five companies competing for a total of $80,000 in cash prizes in a Seed Round and a Series A Round. Two firms with Detroit connections are entered in these events.

PowerUp Boot Camp
Additional early-stage entrepreneurs of color have been receiving help for several months developing viable and fundable business models with advice from successful entrepreneur and investor mentors. PowerUp will culminate with a Demo Day presentation where companies will pitch their ideas to a panel of judges to compete for a $20,000 cash prize and potential capital from investors.

Uber, in partnership with PowerMoves@Detroit, will sponsor free rides for account holders to the PowerUp Boot Camp Demo Day Presentation. On Wednesday, April 14th between 8:30 and 12 noon, Uber users can get free rides from anywhere in Detroit to the One Woodward building, located at 1 Woodward Avenue Detroit, MI 48226.

Companies included in the PowerUp boot camp include:

  • Evolve — Learning support systems for high school students
  • FlashDelivery — Restaurant and grocery delivery service
  • Guidesmob — Interactive city guides
  • Networkingout — Virtual workout club
  • Paralee Boyd Salon — Timely, affordable hair car
  • Warranty Ninja — Simplified warranty management for consumer products

“With all the enthusiasm for entrepreneurs in Detroit, and our city’s great legacy for providing opportunities for African Americans, this seemed like the perfect time and place for PowerMoves@Detroit,” said Rodrick Miller, President and CEO of Detroit Economic Growth Corporation, one of the co-hosts for the event. “This event fills an important niche in the broad spectrum of activities that DEGC, Invest Detroit and others undertake to support entrepreneurship in Detroit.”

Other events include a dinner pitch by a medical technology startup and an “Art of the Exit” panel and luncheon.

The Morgan Stanley Power Pitch Competition sessions, PowerUp Boot Camp Demo Day, and “The Art of the Exit” Panel and Luncheon are free and open to the public. The venues have limited seating, so pre-registration is strongly encouraged.

The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and the New Economy Initiative are underwriting the event. The event is sponsored by Morgan Stanley and aims to support minority-owned companies seeking venture-backed funding.

To register, visit: On site registrations will only be accepted if space permits.

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