Pontiac’s Big Idea Grant Program

Get up to $10,000 as a grant towards your business, or business idea.




Flagstar Bank has committed to investing $10 million into Pontiac as an economic catalyst for both downtown and Pontiac’s greater region.

Flagstar Bank has committed to investing $10 million into Pontiac as an economic catalyst for both downtown and Pontiac’s greater region.  One of the investment projects from Flagstar Bank is “Pontiac’s Big Idea Grant Program” which works with the support and partnership of Main Street Pontiac, the Build Institute and ProsperUS.  The grant program puts in $500,000 of funding into the small business community each year for 5 years, starting in 2017.  Small businesses, through a competitive application process, may receive up to $10,000 in the form of a grant.  Every year, one $50,000 to $100,000 grant may be awarded for a game-changing idea that produces a significant number of jobs or will clearly attract people to visit Pontiac. The program will come to an end in late fall/early winter 2021 as it closes out its fifth year.

The Big Idea

We believe that a great idea can become a great business or can help a good business grow. Pontiac’s Big Idea Grant Program (PBIGP) celebrates doing business in the city of Pontiac – rewarding those with the best ideas for growth. Each year, for 5 years, in addition to business support, PBIGP will provide $500,000 in support of small businesses through grants and loans. PBIGP is not interested in just giving out cash.  PBIGP is interested in inspiring and enabling your ideas. Applicants must consider the purpose of the program: to sustain businesses, strengthen neighborhoods, grow ideas, diversify economies, and grow jobs for reside



How much grant money is available?

Each year, beginning in 2017, PBIGP will provide $500,000 in grants and loans into Pontiac. Our lending partner, ProsperUS, will provide about $100,000 in small business loans and grants each year through a fund that Flagstar developed with them as a partner. In addition to the loan/grant program with ProsperUS, the PBIGP Advisory Council will provide another $350,000 each year in grants to small businesses and to fund the development of an entrepreneurial ecosystem for supporting small businesses. Each quarter of each year, the Advisory Council will review grant applications and make about $87,000 in grants to the community to support small business ideas and growth.

How big are the grants to businessnes?

Grant applicants may be awarded between $1,000 and $10,000. The PBIGP Advisory Council will determine the amount based upon the quality of your responses on the grant application, available grant dollars in the program, and how well our business meets the objectives of the PBIGP.



How do I apply for a grant?

Grant applications are to be electronically submitted through this website. The application can be completed online and will be immediately submitted to the PBIGP Advisory Council. You may not hand your application to a member of the PBIGP Advisory Council, Main Street Pontiac, Build Institute, ProsperUS, or anyone associated with the PBIGP.

Deadlines & Notification Timing

  • $10k PBIGP Grant – Submit by September 15th by 11:59 pm, receive decision by October 31st
  • $20k PBIGP Places & Paychecks Grant – Submit by September 24th by 11:59 pm, receive decision by October 31st



2017-2018 Grant Recipients

  • Access Energy Management
  • AdLocal
  • Alley Cat Cafe
  • Boxx Boys Moving
  • Cartier Rose
  • Detroit Sewn
  • E&K Arts And More
  • Enrichment Programs
  • Epiphany Studios
  • Fillmore 13 Brewery
  • Harold’s Italian Ice
  • I Am Beauty
  • K&R Studios
  • McNeal Automotive
  • Menagerie Lounge
  • Mitten Made
  • Need to Talk
  • North End Studios (Saginaw Consignments)
  • Numbers Brothers
  • Nurish Brand
  • Paissa Wine Cellar
  • Plug N Play Studios
  • Sprout Fresh Food Store
  • The NEXT Education
  • Touchpoint for Youth
  • Upholstery With Class
  • Washington Events
  • Your World Electric

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