Detroit's new biz accelerator focuses on creative sector

Jul 11, 2011

A unique business accelerator opens today in Detroit. 

A lot of business accelerators, generally speaking, focus on internet startups and biotech companies. But with the new Creative Ventures Acceleration Program in Detroit, the spotlight is on creative industries:

"The industrial design world, the interior design world, fashion design, music production, video production and architecture."

That’s Matt Clayson, director of the Detroit Creative Corridor Center, the group behind the new accelerator.

The one-year program will provide training, mentorship, software and low-cost workspaces to 17 Detroit area creative businesses including Detroit Lives!, a multi-media company. Philip Lauri, the company's director, says he's excited to get "specific mentoring and advice" during the pilot program. "I think that’s always valuable, just to have a second set of fresh business eyes on what you’re doing," explains Lauri.

The grand opening is scheduled Tuesday at 5 p.m. at the A. Alfred Taubman Center at the College for Creative Studies.

Here's a list of the 17 companies participating in the new creative accelerator:

1.    First Element Entertainment, a full-service film and video production house

2.    Homeslice, a for-profit apparel design and manufacturing house striving to utilize methods that make a humanistic and ecological impact

3.    coG-studio, an architectural design and service firm

4.    PASSENGER Center for Contemporary Art, a creative cultural center, exhibition venue, and studio/residency program for artists

5.    PTD Design, an architectural design firm

6.    Left Bank Creative, which specializes in identity management, digital animation, web development and branding services

7.    People of Detroit, whose mission it is to give voice to the positive, dynamic individuals that live in or have relationships with the city of Detroit

8.    Detroit Lives!, a developer of engaging multimedia products and projects that push a new image of the city of Detroit

9.    GAS Afterhours Productions, a film production company

10.Publicity Ink, a developer of ad copy, web content, press releases, newsletters and bios

11.Detroit Big F Deal, a crowd-funding platform that facilitates financial and volunteer contributions toward areas of social and civic need

12.Rippid, a source for helping businesses find freelance support and other resources

13.Will Do Designs, which provides public relations and image management consulting

The following firms have been chosen to participate in the virtual program:

1.    Centric Design Studio, an organization that merges architecture and graphic design practices

2.    Detroit Design Center, designers of sculpture and functional art

3.    MASH, a media and lifestyle branding company with an emphasis on fusing  fashion and design