The New Economy Initiative, a special project of the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan, is the largest economic development initiative of its kind working to build a network of support for entrepreneurs and small businesses. It was built in the face of a market failure not seen in our lifetime and a culture that had either forgotten or lost faith in its ability to generate the ideas and businesses of tomorrow. Through smart investments, NEI has continued to narrow its focus towards the Greater Downtown 3.5 mile corridor that can service entrepreneurs, while benefiting people throughout the region.

That means supporting the service providers – from those providing technical assistance like business planning and concept testing, to those providing capital and beyond – that help businesses grow and thrive, while connecting them to each other and the people they serve. That means creating new companies, jobs and additional dollars of investment along the way. Ultimately, that means building a more diverse economy where jobs and prosperity are available for all.

Our Mission

The mission of the New Economy Initiative (NEI) is to create an inclusive, innovative regional culture by reawakening and leveraging Detroit’s creative entrepreneurial drive. Our overarching goal is to establish a more diverse economy where opportunity, wealth and prosperity are available for all.

Our Goals

With intensive focus and inspired collaboration, the New Economy Initiative intends to stimulate the Detroit region to achieve the following bold goals over the next five years:

  • 1,000 new or renewed enterprises
  • 20,000 new jobs
  • $1 billion invested into the entrepreneurial ecosystem
  • Build a dense, vibrant and connected Urban Innovation District that attracts diverse resources and talent