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Entrepreneurship : Featured Stories

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Immigration: An Old Solution for the New Economy

Yousif Ghafari is the living embodiment of the American immigrant success story. He was born in Lebanon, earned multiple college degrees in the U.S., and spent decades building a business from scratch. The result has been wealth, community status, political connections, and a reputation for philanthropy. Needless to say, Ghafari has some strong opinions about the role of immigrants in our region's success. Dennis Archambault gets the story.

Has Fido Got Beer Bones?

Sometimes entrepreneurial success is a matter of being in the right place at the right time and recognizing an opportunity when you see one. In the case of Cohiba's Beer Bones it meant letting the family dog chow down on some accidentally spilled home brewery ingredients.

Tinker, Invent, Innovate - TechShop Comes To Metro Detroit

Laser cutters, 3D printers and CNC routers at gym membership prices. TechShop Detroit is a playground for do-it-yourself entrepreneurs, a workshop and makerspace that democratizes industrial fabrication.

Birmingham Welcomes Its Lego Robot Masters

Anyone with kids knows that Legos are more than just a toy, they are a multi-colored, foot-impaling lifestyle... and the addiction of many a child. Meet Jonathan and Sarah Jacobs, the ultimate pushers. Realizing that kids need a makerspace of their own, the couple opened Birmingham's Robot Garage, a Lego and handmade robotics wonderland.

Craftwork: Pursuing Passion To Make Things By Hand

Blame it on the recession or chalk it up to a growing subculture of people who prefer vinyl records to MP3s, but the trend toward creative entrepreneurship is real and rising. With a growing appreciation for authenticity, usually in the form of a handmade object with pedigree or a good story, folks have traded in their "day jobs" to pursue their passion for making things by hand.

Michigan-made Ambassador: Achatz Pie Co.

In 19 years the Achatz Pie Co. has gone from family kitchen to farmer's market to over 100 grocery stores, including Whole Foods. But co-founder and co-owner Wendy Achatz is more than just an all-natural sweet treat peddler, she's an enthusiastic cheerleader for Michigan-made products.

StartGarden Sows the Seeds of Entrepreneurship

From ArtPrize to the seed accelerator Momentum to the web business incubator Pomegranate Studios, Grand Rapids-based Rick Devos has created an impressive farm team of entrepreneurial enterprises focused on strengthening Michigan's economic ecosystem. His latest creation, StartGarden, gets both professionals and the public behind projects with the potential to blossom into successful businesses.

A Cupcake Supreme

Chocolate Salted Caramel cupcakes. French toast and bacon cupcakes. Are you salivating like Homer Simpson yet? Royal Oak's Taste Love Cupcakes (TLC) was just another Metro Detroit cupcakery ...until it proved it wasn't. Now it's a "Cupcake Wars" champion. And the hungry masses are coming.

Mount Clemens Takes All Kinds

Diane Kubik could be a poster child for urban advocates. Six years ago she moved from the sprawl of the suburbs to open Max And Ollie's in downtown Mt Clemens, just six blocks from her new home. Since then, much happiness has ensued. Not only has her shop found success, she's become an enthusiastic booster in her community - part of the reason the 'Clem is making a name for itself.

Montee Holland: Building a Fashion Empire from Metro Detroit

When most people think about the fashion industry they think New York, Milan, Paris and, inevitably, women. Montee Holland is changing that mindset with his successful men's fashion line and a company that calls Metro Detroit home.

5 Years and 250 Issues Later

This past January Metromode turned five years old. Over the course of 250 issues we've really gotten to know metro Detroit ... and yet we're constantly surprised by the stories we dig up. Managing editor Jeff Meyers, a transplant to the region, reflects on what he's learned about SE Michigan.

The Art of Destination Dining

Every year lots of restaurants open in metro Detroit but few are able to distinguish themselves as dining destinations. What does it take to create an eatery that has its own sense of place? Metromode's Nicole Rupersburg chats with Hubert Yaro, co-owner of the iconoclastic Ronin and Commonwealth about the art of pioneering a stand-out business.

Shifting Gears: A Conversation with Sean Simpson

Sean Simpson isn't just the co-founder of a lean, mean start-up, he lives his life like his start-up. As one of the brains behind Autobike, a company working to make a smarter, more intuitive gear shifter, Simpson chucked the 9-5 grind of corporate engineering to enter the burn-the-candle-from-both-ends world of entrepreneurship. He couldn't be happier.

Our Pop-Up Kitchen Scene

They're like the Brigadoons of cuisine, restaurants that appear for one night then vanish into the ether, leaving their fans hungry for their next appearance (which is usually far less than 100 years). Pop-up kitchens are... well... popping up around Metro Detroit, giving budding restaurateurs their first taste of what it's like to run an eatery.

Metromode Speaker Event: Growing Companies

Join Metromode and Model D Feb. 29 at the newly renovated M@dison Building, home to Detroit Venture Partners and a growing family of companies, for a conversation about getting from startup to second stage. Registration begins now.
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