The Results are In!

Congratulations to our top 100 finalists! Each will be awarded $1,000 to begin preparing for Demo day on September 18, 2024.



September 18, 2024

Join us at Calder Plaza to support our top 100 finalists as they compete for the $20,000 grand prize!


Anyone from anywhere in any language can submit an idea—and it only takes 100 seconds! You can submit more than one idea.
  • Ideas can be submitted from May 3, 2024 until 11:59pm on July 8, 2024
  • On July 15, 2024, the 100 finalists are announced
  • $1,000 is awarded to each of the 100 to prepare for Demo Day
  • Demo Day takes place on September 18 at Calder Plaza
  • $20,000 is awarded to the winners of Demo Day

“I’m always grateful for Start Garden’s support early on in my founder journey. As you go through the founder’s ups and downs, you learn quickly that community is everything and there are people rooting for you. To the next generation of 100 who will continue to raise the bar for our ecosystem – know that we are here rooting for you to win.”

– Darren Riley, JustAir

“Nadia and I are grateful for the work Start Garden is doing around entrepreneurial development. The resources we received from Start Garden assisted GRNoir Wine & Jazz to become what we envisioned it would be.”

– Shatawn Brigham, GRNoir

“We won the Start Garden 100 in 2022. At the time, we were getting ready to start an accelerator, but didn’t have any capital to work with. Winning the 100 allowed us to be able to buy licenses to some much needed software and cover some travel expenses to get to SXSW where we already had a partnership with Midwest House.”

– Andrea Wallace

“Being the only Latina person to win the Start Garden 100 in 2021, I took advantage of the $20,000 and expanded my sweets business into importing unique coffee products from Colombia to the US. Thanks to Start Garden and their connections I have my imported Colombian products in all 258 Meijer stores and has enabled me to fulfill my mission of helping single mothers head of households with employment in Colombia!”

– Paola Carlson, Pochis Sweet Designs

Start Garden and Northern Initiatives have partnered to increase the startup funds for the annual 100 competition!

An option for the 10 finalists to receive loans from Northern Initiatives brings the total in startup awards for the Start Garden 100 to $500,000. Northern Initiatives, a community development financial institution, has been providing capital and support to small businesses across Michigan for 30 years.

Each of the 10 winners will be offered up to $20,000 as a loan from Northern Initiatives in addition to the $20,000 no-strings-attached grant that Start Garden awards. It will be up to each individual entrepreneur to decide if they want to accept the $20,000 loan according to where their business is at the time. This is potentially up to $40,000 to put into your business!