Business Week

Meet the Founders Behind 25 Promising Companies
By Nick Leiber, Sommer Saadi, Victoria Stilwell, Joel Stonington, John Tozzi, and Venessa Wong

When asked readers over the summer to suggest the most promising companies run by entrepreneurs 25 or younger, more than 200 people responded. We've narrowed the suggestions to 25 finalists whose stories are told here. Please take a look and then vote, through Oct. 20, for the one you think is most promising. We'll announce the top five readers' picks on Oct. 27.

Click HERE to Vote For Texts From Last Night!


Texts From Last Night
What it does: Humor blog
Founders: Lauren Leto, 24, and Ben Bator, 25
Revenue 2010: $1 million
Revenue 2011 (projected): $2 million

Intended for readers trolling for a quick laugh, Texts From Last Night is an irreverent blog that collects raunchy cell phone texts and posts selections without attribution. Started for fun in 2009 by friends Lauren Leto, now 24, and Ben Bator, now 25, while attending law school at Wayne State University in Detroit, the blog has grown into a popular franchise, including a book of the same name and paid mobile apps that have been downloaded more than 1 million times. Seizing momentum from the blog’s success, Leto has raised nearly $1 million for her latest venture, Bnter, an online software platform for individuals who want to save and share memorable text messages or other digital exchanges with friends or family. Launched in February with co-founder Patrick Moberg, 25, Leto says Bnter (pronounced Banter) will earn money through advertising. While she runs both businesses, Leto is also working on a book of essays for Harper Perennial titled Judging a Book by Its Lover. —Nick Leiber

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By Eric Smith
The Bleacher Report

According to local Indianapolis newspaper the Indianapolis Star, the Izod IndyCar Series will return to Detroit next season.

The city council approved the return today and it seems like Belle Isle will return to the schedule.

As of now the race is scheduled to be run the first weekend in June and race day will be June 3, 2012.  The Grand Prix of Belle Isle will be the first race run after the Indianapolis 500.

Next year will be the first time the Izod IndyCar Series returns to Belle Isle since 2008.

I believe that this deal was done to keep new engine supplier Chevrolet happy.

Chevrolet returns to the Izod IndyCar series as an engine supplier next season and where would you want to stage an event to make an engine supplier happy?  Of course the motor city.

I think it's only fair that if Detroit is added back to the schedule, then you need to keep Twin Ring Motegi. Motegi is the Honda test track and Honda has been extremely loyal to the Izod IndyCar Series by supplying engines for years.

It was also announced that this is the last year the series will go to Japan, which is upsetting because those fans are passionate about IndyCar racing and deserve to keep their race.
Greg Morabito


New York chefs know that if you're gonna steal, you should steal from the best. Here's a list of 10 dishes that first received acclaim at one restaurant, and were subsequently copied by a bunch of other ones.

7) The Pickle Back: It's not a dish, but this trendy drink has taken New York by storm lately — it's just a shot of straight booze with a chaser of artisanal pickle juice. You'll see hipsters slamming these back at The Breslin and Death and Co., but the trend apparently started at the Bushwick Country Club in 2006, when the bar was sharing a basement with McClure's Pickles. As the story goes, one of the bartenders guzzled the green stuff after a shot of whiskey as a joke, but he liked what he tasted and decided he should force it upon paying customers.

Feast your eyes on the other 9 dishes that made the list HERE

The Associated Press

A group of local artists, designers, writers and others has transformed a piece of vacant land in Detroit into a European-style beer garden.

The Tashmoo Biergarten will pop up once a week and feature a rotating selection of beer by Michigan brewers, local food vendors and board games to keep patrons entertained throughout its run, which will be five Sundays, from Sept. 25 through Oct. 23.

Organizers say "tashmoo" is a Native American word understood to mean "meeting place."

Event co-founder Suzanne Vier says Tashmoo Biergarten is patterned after European beer gardens, which she says are great places "for people within a community to come together while drinking a beer, having a bite to eat, or playing a game of chess outdoors with their neighbors."

People Mover Trailer from 4exit4 on Vimeo.

Attend the official "People Mover" premiere tomorrow, Sunday September 25th at 7:30 pm at the Tashmoo Biergarten!

Detroiters are invited to help create a public artwork, which is part of an international multi-media documentation project featuring aspects of Detroit. The sponsor is Artefacting, a New York City-based nonprofit dedicated to using art to bring awareness to social issues. On September 18, between 1 pm and 4 pm, Detroit residents are encouraged to bring their own personal flag (any material, size, or color) or to make one onsite as a peaceful protest against the murders and negative community activity. An abandoned and charred house with a history of murder will serve as the canvas for the interactive public artwork called SPIRE: Beacon of Hope. The event address is 4232 Chene, Detroit.

Alex White-Mazzarella, artist and founding director of Artefacting explains, “This is one segment of an international project focusing on how people who they feel are not being taken seriously and who feel hopeless in their economic outlook can use art to make a statement and change their situations. We will use the flags of hope to transform the house.”

According to White-Mazzarella, Spire is the culmination of Artefacting’s six-week Detroit mission. Along with other team members from Holland and Brazil, White-Mazzarella is engaging Detroit’s inner-city community through interviews, research, community service, and discussion groups with at-risk residents. The international team’s research and findings provide the impetus of the artwork for SPIRE, which serves as their social contribution to Detroit’s regeneration.

“What makes working with Detroit different is how open and willing to share residents have been with us but they are not that way with each other,” shares Artefacting photographer and co-director Arne de Knegt. In contrast, de Knegt says, “Mumbai was like a bee hive, very connected and collaborative. They have a lot of social wealth.”

Already documented or “artefacted”are the following locations: Mumbai, India; Rome, Italy; and Lillestrom, Norway. Next the team will move to Queens, New York. This November the Detroit segment will be on exhibit in New York City.

Artefacting is a fiscally sponsored project of the Brooklyn Arts Council in New York, New York. Locally, the team is partnering with the Heidelberg Project in using art to engage and address social issues. They are also coordinating with the Mt. Elliott Business and Community Association and the. 

More information at

General Artefacting information, videos and photographs at

Consortium Views Arts as Engines of Recover
Robin Pogrebin
New York Times

In the two years since he became chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, Rocco Landesman has been trying to make the case that art is an effective linchpin to economic development. Now in a broad effort to build on that thesis, he has helped to enlist an unusual consortium of foundations, corporations and federal agencies that will use cultural enterprises to anchor and enliven 34 projects around the country, from a struggling city block in Detroit to a vacant school in East Harlem.

The projects will receive $11.5 million in grants from the foundations and another $12 million in loans from the corporations under the program that is to be financed through the private sector but coordinated in part by federal agencies. The program, to be announced on Thursday and called ArtPlace, aims to integrate artists and arts groups into local efforts in transportation, housing, community development and job creation as an important tool of economic recovery.

“We really need to scale up the resources in the field,” Mr. Landesman said. “It is not going to be through Congressional appropriation.”

“We felt,” he added, “if we worked together and coordinated our efforts, it would have a multiplier effect.”

So in St. Paul the program will help underwrite efforts to stage more than 100 arts projects along a new light-rail line. In Detroit a stretch of Woodward Avenue will gain a music center, pedestrian greenways, improved museum space and a new building for start-up companies. And P.S. 109 in East Harlem will become a home for 90 artists and their families as well as 13,000 square feet of space for community and cultural groups.

Click HERE to read the rest of this article!

Pick Mi Date Turns Up The Heat For Their Next Date!

When was the last time you cut a rug with a world champion salsa dancer? That’s right, never. But because of our smooth, latin tongues, we at Pick Mi Date can make that happen. (You should really hear how we can roll our “R’s”)
So why don’t you let Pick Mi Date help you get in touch with your Latin side?
Dinner and Salsa Lessons at Vicente’s Cuban Cuisine!
Saturday, September 24 at 8:00pm!!
  • The Winning Couple Will Receive a 3 Course Cuban Dinner and Two Round of Drinks from Vicente’s Cuban Cuisine !
  • After Dinner Entertainment Salsa lessons with World Champion Salsa Dancer Victor!
  • Street and Lot Parking is Available
You Must Sign Up As a Dater By Sunday, September 18th 2011!
Voting Begins at 9am Monday, September 19th!

Directions To Register:
1. Head over to
2. Click on the “Register To Date” Button
3. Fill Out The Most Hilarious Dating Form Online
4. Click “Submit”
Darren Calabrese | The Associated Press

During Friday’s jam-packed press conference at the 36th Toronto International Film Festival, mega-star George Clooney had high praise for both Ann Arbor and Detroit, two locales where he shot parts of his latest movie—“The Ides of March.”

“We loved it there,” said Clooney, in response to my question about how much he enjoyed being in town earlier this year. “First of all, Ann Arbor is an amazing city. We got there on St. Patrick’s Day and everyone was drinking beer and everyone was screwed up, and I was like, ‘This town was made for me.’ "

After that initial bit of glibness, the director, co-star and co-writer of “The Ides of March” continued his Michigan love-fest on a more serious note. “We loved being on the campus, we loved shooting all around Detroit and Ann Arbor," said Clooney. "When you go to Detroit you see a town that is resilient, that’s just fighting to win again, and there’s an energy to that. Just watching a city really fighting to get back on its feet and watching the inner strength of a city is tremendous.”

Click HERE to read the rest of this article! 
The Cities With The Happiest Young Professionals

Detroit, the Bronx and Sacramento may not be the first places that come to mind when you think about where you’d be happiest—but it turns out those three cities are where some of the nation’s most contented young professionals are, according to online career site

Its list of the 20 happiest cities for young professionals is based on analysis from thousands of employee generated reviews between 2010 and 2011. Young professionals, defined by CareerBliss as employees with less than 10 years’ experience in a full-time position, were asked to rate eight factors that affect workplace happiness, including growth opportunities, compensation, benefits, work-life balance, career advancement, senior management, job security and whether they would recommend their employer others.

They valued each factor on a five-point scale, and also indicated how important it was to their overall happiness at work. The numbers were combined to find an average rating of overall employee happiness for each respondent, and then sorted by location to find which cities had the happiest workers.

“In our research, CareerBliss found that young professionals take career happiness very seriously,” says the company’s chief executive, Heidi Golledge. “Typically, they will continue to keep their résumé active on job boards just in case something more fulfilling comes along, and they are typically two to three times more likely than their parents to jump jobs for more career happiness. In short, they take the right to pursuit happiness to heart and will typically not stay at a job with poor conditions for very long, and they will even relocate to get out of an unhappy work environment.”

If you’re looking to move to a happier place, you might consider Redmond, Wash.

Heading the list of the cities with the happiest young professionals, Redmond earned an overall score of 3.835. Workers there expressed the most optimism in the Benefits category, which scored 4.260.

The city, located just east of Seattle, is best known as the home of the tech giant Microsoft—which could be responsible for making so many employees in the area happy.

In Pictures: The Cities With The Happiest Young Professionals

“In terms of young professionals, Redmond features a large number of technology jobs, partly due to the location of Microsoft,” says CareerBliss chief technology officer Matt Miller. “Microsoft’s outstanding benefits ranking, as well as its status as a company its employees would recommend to others, helps elevate its ranking. We also found that Redmond ranked No. 1 in compensation for young professionals, which is very important for those starting out in the work force.”

Things are also sunny for young workers in Florida. Fort Lauderdale and Orlando round out the top three cities, with overall scores of 3.665 and 3.635, respectively.

Elsewhere on the list are Detroit and the Bronx. “The CareerBliss data showed that young professionals in Detroit enjoyed their work-life balance and the opportunity to work at companies they would recommend to others,” Golledge says. “However, job security in Detroit lowered their overall score and kept Detroit from the top spot.  Many young professionals who were hit hard by the recession are moving to locations such as the Bronx and Detroit to get jobs and start building their résumés, and they are finding once they are there that the larger companies there have something to offer, and they end up staying with those companies for longer than expected.”

Click HERE to read the rest of this article!
Curbed Detroit
Sarah Cox

Welcome to New Brooklyn! Today Curbed Detroit arrives just in time to scoop up all the scoop on $100 houses before they're gone and we're all living in loft condos next to urban farms (that's Whole Foods for Midtowners). Grab your MFA and a cash down payment because it is time to get started. (Pardon the mess. We're unpacking).

Curbed Detroit the newest site in the Curbed Network, and aims to celebrate neighborhoods, architecture, real estate porn, gossip, and everything to do with the built environment of the Motor City. If foreclosure auctions are your thing and sweeping penthouse views of Canada knock you out, you've come to the right place. Ham Town resident Sarah F. Cox takes the helm as Curbed Detroit's editor.

We'll share the latest news and commentary about Detroit's renewal and bargain-basement-affordable sales prices, as well as neighborhood gossip from the riverfront to 8 Mile and beyond. Yes, this means frequent ventures down Woodward to the 'burbs, too. Maybe one day we'll get to do it on the rail line.

For those familiar with some of the regular features of Curbed, you can expect a healthy dose of That's Rather Hideous and Adventures in Marketing, as well as brand-new features exclusive to the Dangerous D.

Most importantly, it's up to you, dear reader, to keep us up to speed with what's happening in your 'hood. If you've got news, scoops, tips, rumors or rants, don't be shy about directing them to our tipline. And thank you for the warm Midwestern welcome. See you at Slows.
(David N. Posavetz/Daily Tribune)
Michael P. McConnell
Daily Tribune

People with electric vehicles will be able to roll into Ferndale and charge up their cars for free next week.

The city is set to unveil two plug-in charging stations Sept. 8. One station is in the Ferndale Public Library parking lot on the west side of the building. The other station is in the Withington parking lot behind businesses at the northwest corner of Nine Mile and Woodward. Both stations offer free electricity.

An official unveiling will take place at 1 p.m. next Thursday at the station outside the library.

The stations are part of a pilot program set up by DTE Energy in conjunction with General Motors and the U.S. Department of Energy. A total of 16 such charging stations have been installed in Southeast Michigan, including four at Detroit Metro Airport and others in Mount Clemens, Rochester, Auburn Hills, the Village of Rochester Hills shopping center, and the Automation Alley technology center in Troy.

“I think Ferndale is the perfect place for these plug-in stations,” said Mayor Dave Coulter. “We embrace the new green technologies and electric vehicles are a big part of the future of automotive transportation.”

Click HERE to read the rest of this article!
Pewabic Pottery recently received grants from the PNC Foundation, the CIGNA Foundation and the Junior League of Detroit totaling $13,500 to support its bedside art and youth education programs.

The PNC Foundation awarded Pewabic Pottery a grant of $10,000 to support a 12-week in-school program for low-to-moderate income pre-schoolers in Detroit, focusing on cognitive, social, emotional and psychomotor skill-building through ceramic arts lessons and activities. As part of its “Grow Up Great” initiative, the PNC Foundation supports nonprofit organizations that work to directly improve children's school readiness by providing support in one of the following key areas: social and emotional development, teacher training and arts and culture.

The CIGNA Foundation awarded Pewabic Pottery a grant of $2,500 to support its Bedside Art: Fun With Clay program. The CIGNA Foundation is committed to enhancing the health of individuals and families through the well-being of the communities in which they live and work, and does this in part through financial support of creative and responsive programs and services.

The Junior League of Detroit awarded Pewabic Pottery a grant of $1,000 to support its Bedside Art: Fun With Clay program. The Junior League of Detroit focuses on elevating the lives of children. They use, initiate and participate in community-based collaborative partnerships that work to broaden the educational, cultural, recreational, and health opportunities for children in the city of Detroit.

Pewabic Pottery’s inpatient Bedside Art program currently serves 600 pediatric patients, ages 7-18, annually at Detroit’s Children’s Hospital of Michigan. This year round bedside ceramic arts program is designed to promote wellness by providing creative activity as an outlet for expression, which is beneficial to hospitalized children. This program is unique in that it is the only hospital ceramic art program of its kind currently provided to inpatients in one of Michigan’s largest pediatric hospitals.

Pewabic Pottery is a non-profit arts and cultural organization and National Historic Landmark dedicated to ceramic education and advancing contemporary ceramic arts while honoring Arts & Crafts ideals.

Pewabic Pottery is open to the public year round and offers classes, workshops, lectures and tours to children and adults. Pewabic continues to create tile for architectural and offers galleries that showcase more than 70 ceramic artists and a museum store for purchasing handmade items.

Visitors are welcome, free of charge, during regular business hours Monday – Saturday from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m.

To learn more about Pewabic Pottery call (313) 626-2000 or visit our website at

Pewabic Pottery can be found at 10125 E. Jefferson Ave. in Detroit across the street from Waterworks Park.
It was a hot summer for Hard Rock Cafe Detroit – in sales, that is.  Year-to-date sales at the cafe are up 9.2 percent, earning the restaurant Hard Rock’s “Top of the Rock” award.

“Only a small number of cafes are honored each year with the Top of the Rock award, so this is a proud moment for us,” said Peter Hanna, general manager at Hard Rock Cafe Detroit. “But the credit is really due to our customers, who support us and believe in the city. We love Detroit and see this as a sign of even better things to come.”

Hard Rock Cafe Detroit’s sales are up 13 percent over the prior year’s sales, and the cafe's guest satisfaction ranking is up as well.

The Top of the Rock award is given to 12 cafes each year based on financial performance, unique sales accomplishments and community contributions. For the honor, the Detroit cafe received a custom Gibson guitar to be displayed in the restaurant, featuring a hand-painted design and a chrome grill from the front of a car.

Part of Hard Rock Cafe Detroit’s success is due to its live music events. Most recently the restaurant hosted Atlanta singer-songwriter Sonia Leigh and Nashville country-rock duo Brasher/Bogue during a Kenny Chesney pre-party. This fall, the cafe plans to host the Detroit Lions post-game review show and will continue to set the stage for multiple local artists.

President Barack Obama will travel to Detroit on Sept. 5 to speak at the city's annual Labor Day festivities.

The White House says Obama will speak at a Labor Day event sponsored by the Metro Detroit Central Labor Council.

It will be Obama's second trip to Michigan in a month. Obama visited a battery plant in Holland, Mich., on Aug. 11.

Obama has touted his administration's work to rescue General Motors and Chrysler, which are both headquartered in the Detroit area.

Pick Mi Date 1 Year Anniversary Date at the Historic Cliff Bell’s
Friday, September 9 at 8:00 pm!!
  • The Winning Couple Will Receive a 3 Course Dinner and Two Round of Drinks from Cliff Bell’s New Menu (we’ve tried it and it’s delicious)!
  • After Dinner Entertainment Provided by Grupo Escobor, Detroit’s Very Own 11 Piece Cuban Band! 
  • Valet Parking is Available
You Must Sign Up As a Dater By Sunday, September 3rd 2011!

Voting Begins at 9am Monday, September 4th!

Directions To Register:

1. Go to 
2. Click on the “Register To Date” Button
3. Fill Out The Most Hilarious Dating Form Online
4. Click “Submit”
You walk by this space everyday. Maybe it's an alley, or a surface parking lot, or a shadowy nook under an overpass. You think to yourself how great it could be, filled with people and activity instead of sitting there looking all sad and sorry. It wouldn't take much, you figure, to turn this site into a really cool spot.

Architects and planners call these spaces the "missing teeth" in our urban fabric. As buildings are torn down for parking or empty lots, our streetscapes take on a gap-toothed appearance. Sometimes it's the smallest slivers of space that can make the difference between a vibrant, walkable neighborhood and a place that feels uninviting or unsafe.
“Mind the Gap” is a public ideas competition for Detroit Design Festival to generate creative new ideas for these in-between spaces in our city. Alleys, bridges, overpasses, sidewalks, storefronts, surface parking lots, vacant lots – any space that connects two places.

For the sake of this project, we're not looking for major in-fill development ideas. We're looking for small-scale interventions that could have a large impact. We're looking for simple ways to stitch Detroit's urban fabric back together.

For this exercise, we borrow the  motto of Detroit’s Green Garage: “Small is big.”

You need not be an architect or planner to enter this competition. All you need is the ability to describe a site and solution. Supporting images are encouraged, but not required.

Anyone can submit an idea online through the “Mind the Gap” website or in person at Bureau of Urban Living, 460 West Canfield Street, Detroit, MI 48201. Submissions are due Monday, September 12, 2011, 5:00 pm EST.

Submissions will be reviewed by a jury, and a $100 cash prize will be awarded to the best idea. A selection of ideas will be displayed and published during Detroit Design Festival (September 21-28, 2011) presented by the Detroit Creative Corridor Center (DC3).

“Mind the Gap” is organized by the lovely Claire Nelson of Bureau of Urban Living. For more information, email