Fewer than 40 percent of Michigan restaurants that applied for federal assistance through the Restaurant Revitalization Fund received grants, according to the data released Friday from the U.S. Small Business Association.
Of the 3,305 Michigan restaurants and caterers that received grants, just 235 of these businesses are in the city of Detroit. In Michigan, 8,614 food companies applied for funding to the program. Restaurants, bars, bakeries, food trucks, brewpubs, wineries, taverns, inns, and distilleries were eligible for the pandemic relief.
While no Michigan firms received the maximum grant of $10 million, International Market Place Inc., operators of Fishbones-Rhythm Kitchen Cafe and headquartered at 400 Monroe St. in downtown Detroit, received $8.1 million — the largest amount given to a Michigan business. Fishbones has three restaurants in Detroit, Southfield, and St. Clair Shores. Jamjomar VIII, operator of McDonald’s stores, received $3.4 million. The smallest grants—less than $1,200 each— went to two Detroit caterers and a coney island in Dearborn Heights. The grants don’t have to be repaid if they are used to cover eligible expenses by March 2023.
The $28.6 billion federal COVID-19 relief fund for restaurants and other food businesses opened for applications on May 3 but closed after it ran out of money, having approved fewer than a third of the 370,000 applications for funding received. The SBA said the portal will close Wednesday, July 14, raising questions about whether the RRF funds will be replenished.
Here’s a look at the Michigan businesses that received the largest grants and the total amount they received:
Detroit restaurant operators receiving more than $1 million
- International Market Place Inc., operators of Fishbones, $8.1 million
- Jamjomar VIII Inc., operator of McDonald’s franchises, including at Detroit Metropolitan Airport, $3.4 million
- Pegasus Greektown, operators of Pegasus Taverna, $3.3 million
- Andiamo Detroit LLC, $2.5 million
- Thirteen01 Restaurant Group LLC. Thirteen01 lists the Standby and the Skip as businesses, $2 million
- The Old Shillelagh LLC, $1.96 million
- Woodland Street LLC, $1.8 million, Woodland Street lists downtown restaurant Selden Standard as a business
- 800 Parc LLC, operators of Parc, $1.7 million
- 1500 Wright LLC, operator of Wright & Co., $1.31 million
- Detroit Beer Co., $1.3 million
- JCD Detroit Inc, operator of Green Dot Stables, $1.3 million
- NPBC Detroit LLC, 644 Selden St, $1.2 million, operators of Smith & Co. and Nain Rouge Brewery
- The D-A Restaurant LLC, $1.2 million, shares an address with Firebird Tavern at 419 Monroe St.
- Blufin Sushi, $1.1 million, shares an address with Rusted Crow Tavern at 78 W. Adams Ave.
- Gourmet Deli in the Renaissance Center, $1.1 million
Metro Detroit businesses receiving top funding
- Picasso Cafe Inc., 24 Frank Lloyd Wright Drive, Ann Arbor, $5.4 million
- Epoch Hospitality LLC, Novi, $5 million
- Shatila Food Products and Manufacturing LLC, Dearborn, $4.6 million
- HUB Stadium LLC, 2550 Innovation Dr, Auburn Hills, $3.4 million
- Pennas Inc, a caterer in Sterling Heights, $3.4 million
- Zingerman’s Delicatessen Inc., Ann Arbor, $3.4 million
- Motor City Peaks LLC, Farmington Hills, $3.3 million
- Knight’s Holdings Inc., Ann Arbor $3 million
- Villa Del Signore Inc., Livonia, operates as a banquet and conference center, $2.9 million
- Andiamo Catering & Event Management LLC, Troy, $2.8 million
- Da Francesco Inc., Shelby Township, $2.3 million
- Weber’s Inc., Ann Arbor, $2.2 million
Despite a long rollout, the Restaurant Revitalization Fund has been plagued with issues. Unlike the Paycheck Protection Program loans, rolled out last year to help restaurants cover staff wages, the SBA plan aimed to reach businesses owned by women, veterans, and people from economically and socially disadvantaged groups — many of whom missed out on earlier rounds of financial relief. The plan included a 21-day prioritization period for restaurants owned by those groups, however, the Small Business Association reversed course after being hit with lawsuits, and it rescinded previously approved funds.
As a result, more than 2,900 businesses who were notified they’d receive funds, including Bobcat Bonnie’s in Detroit’s Corktown, have had those grants rescinded and are now in limbo with the closing of the portal. Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist sent a letter to the Small Business Administration in late June, advocating for additional resources to help those small businesses immediately.
- Small Business Administration disclosure of businesses approved for Restaurant Revitalization Fund grants
- Everything Restaurants Need to Know About the Restaurant Revitalization Fund [Eater]
- Congress’s Restaurant Revitalization Fund Is Out of Money and Restaurants Are Still in Need [Eater]
- Two Trump Cronies and a DFW Restaurant Are Behind the Lawsuit Preventing Minority-Owned Businesses From Receiving Restaurant Revitalization Fund Relief [Eater Dallas]
- White Bar Owner Responsible for SBA Halting Funds to Minority-Owned Businesses Received $600K in Relief [Eater Philly]
- Bobcat Bonnie’s one of nearly 3,000 restaurants to lose promised relief funding [WXYZ Detroit]