Lupe Fiasco has partnered up with Google exec Di-Ann Eisnor to create the Neighborhood Start Fund. Together they are looking to fund ideas from local Chicago residents.
The fund is looking to find and fund ideas that have the potential to generate $100 million in revenue. In addition to getting rich, the program is also hoping to encourage diversity among entrepreneurs and make way for neighborhood development. The fund will identify startups for investment in selected neighborhoods and then reinvest profits from those startups to create more of them. The two neighborhoods participating in the program are Englewood and Lawndale.
The program will also provide networking opportunities, workshops and mentors. While “startup” is usually synonymous with “tech” the program is open to all ideas from manufacturing to food, as long as it has the potential to make a lot of money.
“From an innovation standpoint, we’re missing out on great ideas and opportunities for problems to be solved,” Eisnor tells Chicago Tribune. “We’re looking for very big good ideas. We want companies that can generate at least $100 million. We want to create a real change, and to do that, we need some super-successful companies.”
In addition to Chicago, the program is also active in the Brownsville, Brooklyn and Jamaica, Queens neighborhoods in New York. It is also running Miami’s Overtown/Wymwood/Allapattah community, South Central Los Angeles, Roxbury in Boston and Anacostia in Washington, D.C.
Willing participants and sign up and find more information here. The fund is offering investments from $25,000 to $100,000 as well as $5,000 towards building prototypes.