Editor’s note: Posts from the Community is the place for community announcements and event postings. If you have a community-oriented event you feel our readers would be interested in, please submit here.
Brew City Match, an initiative focused on catalyzing small business growth and commercial corridor revitalization in neighborhoods surrounding downtown Milwaukee, is relaunching with a streamlined application process to help small businesses gain easier access to financial and technical resources.
Applications from entrepreneurs and building owners are now being accepted through Dec. 1st. An online information session will take place Tuesday, Nov. 9th from 6 – 7pm to provide additional information about Brew City Match. To register for the information session, sign up here or call 414-930-1743. Participants are expected to be announced at a Brew City Match winner’s alumni event planned for January.
“The energy and enthusiasm of local entrepreneurs is impressive. And, when we link entrepreneurial activity with our local commercial corridors, great things occur,” Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett said. “Brew City Match can help launch a dream. When that happens, everyone in Milwaukee benefits.”
Funded by the JPMorgan Chase Foundation, Brew City Match was initially launched in 2019 with a goal of catalyzing small business growth in neighborhoods surrounding downtown Milwaukee. After pivoting this past year to support entrepreneurs with emergency COVID resources, Brew City Match is relaunching its original model to provide entrepreneurs with access to financing resources and technical support and to match qualifying businesses to vacant properties in near downtown neighborhoods.
“Brew City Match is about supporting entrepreneurs while creating vibrant commercial corridors to build a more inclusive local economy” said Celia Benton, Program Officer at LISC Milwaukee. “We look forward to supporting former winners and meeting the next round of applicants.”
In its three earlier rounds, Brew City Match has provided more than 100 entrepreneurs with small business technical assistance, more than $110k in small business grants and more than $600k in commercial property improvement grants helping to leverage more than $2.3 million in commercial property improvement projects.
“As a Brew City Match participant, I was able to take part in Start, Run, & Grow, an eight-week program that taught me how to build, manage and operate a business. It was an incredible experience, the information I learned will help long into the future. I also met and networked with other entrepreneurs, which has been priceless,” said Doris Jones, owner of D’VAXVA’s Portable Parties and a Business Plan Track winner in the first round of Brew City Match.
Another former participant, Fit4YouMKE Marketplace owner Robert Brox, said Brew City Match provided a strong foundation for his growing business. “Honestly, we would not have come this far without the knowledge gained in WWBIC’s 10-week Brew City Match business course,” he said. “As a growing company we can directly attribute some of our best business practices learned in a classroom setting with 20-30 motivated small business owners. That experience boosted our confidence and implementation of our product branding, marketing strategies, financial record keeping and much more.”
The Brew City Match program partners include LISC Milwaukee, the City of Milwaukee, Wisconsin Women’s Business Initiative Corporation (WWBIC), the Hmong Wisconsin Chamber of Commerce, Legacy Redevelopment Corporation, the Greater Milwaukee Committee/Scale Up Milwaukee, the Milwaukee Economic Development Corporation, the Clarke Square Neighborhood Association, RiverWorks Development Corporation, and the King Drive, North Ave/Fond du Lac Marketplace, Near West Side, and Historic Mitchell Business Improvement Districts. For more information visit www.brewcitymatch.com or follow Brew City Match on Instagram and Facebook.