A high priority of the Public Market is to spur the launch of new businesses to support the continued growth of our local food economy. Funded by the City of Madison and administered by the North Side Planning Council, FEED Kitchens, Wisconsin Women’s Business Initiative Corporation and Dane County UW Extension, the MarketReady Program prepares new entrepreneurs who have dreamed of starting a food-based or craft-based business for success in the new Market through business training, mentorship, and/or start-up capital.
The MarketReady program prioritizes populations facing historic barriers to entrepreneurship including: women, people of color, immigrants, low income populations, veterans, displaced workers, and LGBTQ+ individuals. Promoting highly diverse merchants is just one way the Public Market Development team is working to make the Market a welcoming, appealing place for all Madisonians.
A total of 30 entrepreneurs at various level of start-up or acceleration have been selected to participate in the MarketReady Program and prepare their businesses for launch in the Public Market. The MarketReady participants are highly diverse including 83% people of color, 19% female, and 33% first generation immigrants.