Determined and experienced businesswoman, Kiera Pack-Henderson, saw a need in Metro Detroit for a stylish, high-quality event venue that she and her friends could use for book signings, baby showers, and other small gatherings.
Pareik Gallery opened its doors in 2018; adorned with chic modern décor, Chiavari chairs, and white marble like flooring it elevates a small gathering to an intimate, memorable experience.
In the past few years Kiera has seen a shift in event needs, a growing demand for more intimate “micro” weddings. Using her savvy marketing skills and experience with fortune 500 companies she saw this as an opportunity to expand her business and increase revenue by opening another venue and providing additional event planning services.
Despite women comprising almost 50% of the population and 38% of businesses being owned by women, the capital needed to sustain and grow their businesses is not as easily accessible.
- On average, big banks approve around 60% of loans applied for by white small-business owners, 50% by Latinx small-business owners, and 29% by Black small-business owners (McKinsey & Company).
- In 2022 Biz2Research found that the average size loan for women-owned businesses was 33 percent less than for male-owned businesses.
- Black small-business owners are significantly more likely to be asked to provide more information about their personal financials—including personal financial statements and personal W-2 forms—when applying for small-business loans than white small-business owners were (McKinsey & Company).
MWF Supports Women and Minority-Owned Businesses
Michigan Women Forward is dedicated to supporting entrepreneurs like Kiera. Offering a relational, supportive approach. MWF walks alongside women and those who lack access to traditional financing.
“When I first started, I didn’t know how to access funding and resources. The first program I was eligible for ran out of funds. People want to support and see successful Black, female business owners, but there is still a long way to go to fill the gap. Thankfully, MWF gave me my first loan.”Kiera Pack-Henderson
In 2022 she received technical assistance and a microloan to realize the next step in her business. Kiera was able to renovate and open a second location, Pareik Too (with more to come). In addition, she expanded her team, created additional jobs, and added event planning and curating services, decor and furniture rentals, bar tenders, and DJs.
“In the Metro Detroit Area, there aren’t many move-in ready businesses, they’re most often retail shops or old manufacturing places. Renovations and even cosmetic updates are always a high cost.”
“Working with MWF was an amazing opportunity to scale my business. It gave me more confidence to move forward. The funding process was smooth and the additional resources, like business planning assistance, was something that will help me for years to come.”
Kiera is one of 1,900 women entrepreneurs we proudly served in 2022; MWF disbursed over $2M in loans to support start-up or established women-led businesses.
“Next time, I could be purchasing my own building,” smiles Kiera.
To support women entrepreneurs, like Kiera, make a gift to Michigan Women Forward.