Lee to Emcee “Toast of the Town” October 12th in Detroit

Techtown Detroit’s “Toast of the Town 2017”, a celebration of Detroit’s entrepreneurial community, is fast-approaching.  Come join over 400 guests for an evening of networking, a strolling dinner and drinks while recognizing the “best of the best” within Detroit’s small business community, including the Small Business of the Year and the Business Champion, et. al….

Attracting Venture Capital to Unlock Growth

Looking for investment capital to help your business achieve financial stability?  What does it take to unlock growth?  Are you prepared and what are investors looking for?   As part of Crain’s Detroit Homecoming, these questions were discussed Friday morning at a session focused on unlocking growth and attracting capital among high-growth investors and minority…

Lee’s Thoughts on Bringing Amazon to Detroit

Amazon recently announced is seeking a second headquarters–HQ2.  It’s being reported Amazon may be investing $5 billion and potentially bringing 50,000 jobs.  Detroit’s being mentioned as a possible site–along with other cities.  What would it take to attract the company to the Detroit region? Mark S. Lee, President & CEO, The LEE Group and host,…

Chasing a Dream and Winning $50k

Imagine coming to the United States from Burundi (E. Africa) as a refugee due to political violence in 2013.  Your wife leaves to explore potential opportunities in a new country and hopefully, a new start.  Shortly after her arrival, she finds refuge at the Freedom House in Detroit–a temporary home for those seeking relief from…

Don’t Forget the Motor City – Woodward Dream Cruise Thoughts

This past weekend marked the 23rd Woodward Dream Cruise.  A weekend celebrating this region’s fascination with the automobile and reminding everyone the role Detroit had in putting the world on wheels. However, I kept asking myself one question: Why doesn’t the cruise extend down Woodward Avenue into the Motor City? Some reading this will ask,…

Comerica Hatch Detroit $50,000 Winner to be Announced

Mark S. Lee, President & CEO, The LEE Group & host, “Small Talk with Mark S. Lee”, will emcee and announce the winner of the 2017 Comerica Hatch Detroit contest on Friday, 8/25, at 2987 Franklin Street, in Detroit.  Recently four finalists, decided by community vote, advanced to the final round and are competing to…

State of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion in Business

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) are stated core beliefs many businesses value.  Since it’s been fifty years since the Detroit ’67 riots, I started to reflect on the status of DEI across the region.  While there were many ’67 discussions over the last several weeks and months regarding the potential root causes for the uprising,…

Building a Business Legacy

According to a SBA report, about two-thirds of small businesses (with employees) will survive two years.  After five years, business survivability drops to nearly half.  In Detroit, it seems new businesses are popping up weekly and the challenge centers around business growth and sustainability. Simply put, how does a new or existing business achieve longevity?…

A Detroit ’67 Perspective

“Don’t even think about leaving the front of this house…” As a youngster, my mom spoke those words to my brothers and me as a significant event in Detroit’s history was unfolding and in my opinion, forever changed the direction of this city. Detroit, July, 1967. Those words conjure up many memories for those who…

Downtown Detroit Business Progress & Challenges

With a resurgent downtown, investment opportunities and small business programs gaining more traction, Detroit is attracting start-ups locally, nationally and internationally. However, more established businesses, particularly those renting space, are feeling the pinch. According to the 2012 U.S. Census data, Detroit is home to more than 62,000 small businesses, making it the fourth-largest city in…