9 Social Business Ideas from Saturday’s Startup Weekend Detroit

By Scott Kloustin on May 30th, 2015 / Comments

Startup Weekend Detroit – Social Entrepreneurship edition is in full swing at the Ford Resource and Engagement Center in Detroit. About 50 participants are hard at work across 9 active teams working on different ideas.

Below you’ll find a brief overview of each team at Startup Weekend Detroit – Social Entrepreneurship Edition. The teams will present Sunday evening and winners will be announced shortly thereafter.

EZTrust – White Label Banking for Immigrants. Problem: Immigrants on work visas don’t have SSNs or U.S. credit history. They can be making $5,000-6,000 per month and they can open a checking account but are told they can only get a $200 secured credit card. Solution: Offer banking services and a credit card under a white label so these people can build a domestic credit history and still have a reasonable credit limit.

ProcrastinAction – Problem: people look at their phone all the time to check a status or just out of habit when bored. The solution is to take a bad habit of going to look at your phone and check a status update, and linking it to a positive outcome, by creating a donation based on how frequently or how long you unlock your phone.

Change for Change –  a simple way for people to invest small amounts of money, rounded up from normal transactions and invested into businesses and organizations that they like and they can get a return on this investment, a form of investment crowdfunding.

BizBrew.co – Local Business Technology and Marketing training. Problem: small businesses need a good web presence and the tools to accomplish this, and WordPress can be overwhelming to novices. Solution: offer different phases of service to small businesses so that they can serve their own needs. Small business enabler through teaching technology, enabling analytics, helping them create content.

College Combat – College course trivia app, like Trivia Crack but an app for learning college course material in an engaging way. Problem: learning course material can be difficult and tedious. Use the style of successful modern trivia games to learn relevant course material.

Fulfill – Package-less delivery of items. Problem: Much of the waste thrown out everyday is packaging and also the cost of an item you buy. various liquids like handsoap, lotion, shampoo, detergent, etc.. Solution: a service where you set out empty containers and the service will deliver product to fill your empty containers, cutting down on waste and saving money on the cost of materials that would normally go to packaging. Like how the milkman used to drop off full milk bottles and take empty glass ones.

Wodoo – Android App for Voice Control for accented English Speakers. Problem: non-native English speakers with regional or foreign accents have a hard time using voice control on their phone or smartwatch. Solution: allow the user to create custom sounds to accomplish tasks on their phone. There is a market potential outside of phones, including connected cars, connected homes, and gaming consoles.

GiveLyrics.co – T-shirts with artists’ lyrics posted on them. Problem: people want a cool t-shirt with meaning to them. Solution: Meaningful lyrics and images are printed on the shirt and a percentage of the cost of the shirt goes to a social organization.

InterviewRehab – App/platform to help people prepare for successful job interviews. Problem: people are frequently not ready for job interviews and the good information is hard to find because it is spread out across the web. Solution: an app or platform that has this information in a central place so that users can prepare for interviews with the right content.

About the Author

Scott Kloustin