March 21, 2014 @ 12:24 am

Beringea Invests $3 Million in Detroit Institute of Music Education

New venture will attract young people, bring jobs to downtown Detroit

 

Beringea, LLC, a private equity firm providing growth capital to market-leading businesses, has announced its fund made a $3 million investment in Detroit Institute of Music Education, Inc. (“DIME”), a music education college dedicated to teaching the next generation of modern musicians. The investment will be used to launch the company’s first U.S. music college, in Detroit.

 

“We’re excited to bring this innovative high profile, high impact business to Detroit and provide growth capital for its launch. DIME’s education model will attract creative young people from all over the country to Michigan, while creating more jobs in the education sector,” said Charlie Rothstein, senior managing director and co-founder of Beringea.

 

Founded by music industry veterans Kevin Nixon, Sarah Clayman and Bruce Dickinson, DIME offers advanced music students a college-style experience in contemporary music, with expert musicians and industry professionals teaching courses in guitar, bass, vocals, drums, songwriting and music entrepreneurship. Prospective students can pursue a bachelor’s degree or diploma in Creative Music Performance, or sign up for part-time and summer music education programs. DIME expects to enroll 150 students for its 2014-2015 school year.

 

“The music industry is a complicated business and learning by experience can be a long route. DIME brings the information, encouragement and expertise to demonstrate how to build a successful career,” says Kevin Nixon, president of DIME. “Musicians will be playing in bands, meeting industry professionals, mastering technique, promoting their own shows, developing their brand, arranging songs, and many other exciting career development activities. Most of all, DIME students will be part of a musical community of like-minded musicians and budding entrepreneurs.”

 

DIME is the third music education venture for serial entrepreneurs Nixon, Clayman and Dickinson. The trio’s most recent model grew to a multi-campus college with locations in the United Kingdom and Ireland. DIME’s educational programs are built on the successful model pioneered by the founders.

 

DIME’s temporary location at 1520 Woodward Avenue, between John R and Witherell will serve as its admissions office and performance space. Prospective students are encouraged to visit the space and meet the DIME team and sign up anytime Monday through Saturday between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.

 

The space will also be equipped with a live stage and sound system, and will feature regular entertainment events. Bands and artists interested in performing in this space can contact the admissions office at 313-223-1600 or www.dime-detroit.com.

 

DIME will formally open in September, when renovations are complete on the historic Bamlet Building, located at 1265 Griswold Street and owned by Bedrock Real Estate Services.  The school will occupy more than 20,000 square feet of space on four floors of the seven-story, building in Capitol Park at the corner of Griswold Street and Grand River Avenue built in 1896.

 

“Detroit has always been known for its music and innovative culture,” said Dan Gilbert, Chairman and Founder of Rock Ventures and Quicken Loans. “It is fitting for the Detroit Institute of Music Education to open in the heart of downtown Detroit where the opportunities to create are endless. I can think of nothing more important than locating institutions that attract young talented people to the city. DIME is a unique entrepreneurial organization that has a proven strategy to develop top-notch musicians. The combination of Detroit’s DNA and DIME’s exciting educational model is going to be a huge success for the entire community.”

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About Beringea
Beringea, LLC provides equity and/or mezzanine debt to small- and-middle market companies. The Firm, which includes Michigan-based Beringea, LLC and its London, UK office Beringea LLP, invests in portfolio companies operating in a range of sectors, including health care, clean technology, manufacturing, media, Internet technologies and specialized consumer products.

 

With flexible capital solutions, extensive investing experience and offices in the U.S. and UK, Beringea’s team offers its portfolio companies the resources to grow their businesses and create value for shareholders. For more information, visit www.beringea.com.

 

In the United States of America, Beringea operates as an SEC-registered investment advisor, Beringea, LLC. In the United Kingdom, this document is issued by Beringea LLP, a firm authorized and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Beringea LLP is a limited liability partnership registered in England and Wales with company number OC342919, and its registered office is at 39 Earlham Street, London, WC2H 9LT, UK. This document is intended solely to provide information regarding Beringea’s potential financing capabilities for prospective portfolio companies.

 

About Detroit Institute of Music Education

Detroit Institute of Music Education (“DIME”) is a music education college dedicated to teaching the next generation of modern musicians. Founded by music industry veterans Kevin Nixon, Sarah Clayman and Bruce Dickinson, DIME will offer advanced music students a college-style experience in contemporary music, with expert musicians and music industry professionals teaching courses in guitar, bass, vocals, drums, songwriting and music entrepreneurship. Prospective students can choose to pursue a bachelor’s degree or diploma in Creative Music Performance, or sign up for part-time and summer music education programs. Serious musicians can expect practical and real-world preparation for a career in the music industry upon graduation.

 

DIME will formally open in September, when renovations will be completed on the historic Bamlet Building in downtown Detroit. A pop-up space, located at 1520 Woodward Avenue between John R and Witherell will open Thursday, March 20 and will serve as a temporary admissions office and performance space for the college. For more information on DIME, visit www.dime-detroit.com or call 313.223.1600.

 

About Bedrock Real Estate Services

Detroit-based Bedrock Real Estate Services is a full-service real estate firm specializing in purchasing, leasing, financing, developing and managing commercial space. Since its founding in 2011, Bedrock has recruited more than 100 tenants to downtown Detroit’s Central Business District. A full listing of recruited tenants is available here. For more information, visit www.Bedrockmgt.com.

 

About Opportunity Detroit

Opportunity Detroit is a campaign that promotes downtown Detroit as a great place to live, work and play. The campaign launched as a partnership with Quicken Loans, Rock Ventures, the Detroit Regional Chamber, and dozens of non-profit, civic and business organizations in the city. It started as a commercial, and it continues to evolve as a campaign to tell Detroit’s story as an emerging high-tech hub, and the city’s ongoing transformation from a muscle economy of the past to the brain economy of the present and future. For more information visit www.opportunitydetroit.com.

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February 11, 2014 @ 2:00 am

ArborMetrix Receives Additional $1.3 Million in Series B Financing From Renaissance Venture Capital Fund and Detroit Innovate Fund

National Market Demand for Performance Analytics for Surgical and Specialty Care Surging

 

ANN ARBOR, MI–(Marketwired – Feb 10, 2014) – ArborMetrix, Inc., a leading provider of real-time healthcare analytics, today announced that it has increased its Series B financing by $1.3 million to allow Renaissance Venture Capital Fund and Detroit Innovate to participate.

 

The earlier round of Series B financing, announced in July, was led by RPM Ventures (RPM) alongside existing investor Arboretum Ventures. Wolverine Venture Fund also participated in the earlier investment.

 

The latest investment will accelerate ArborMetrix’s national market expansion to meet surging demand for its proven real-time, risk-adjusted clinical performance analytics tools. ArborMetrix’s analytics enable healthcare providers and payers to improve the quality, safety and cost-effectiveness of surgical and other specialty care.

 

“We have followed the progress of ArborMetrix and have continually been impressed with its innovative approach to healthcare analytics,” says Chris Rizik, CEO of the Renaissance Venture Capital Fund. “There is an acute need for actionable information that can increase the quality of healthcare and reduce its costs, and ArborMetrix is a pioneer, developing unique tools that will help healthcare providers to address these issues in ways that simply haven’t been possible before. The bar is high for Renaissance to invest directly in a company, but we were so excited by the great promise we see in ArborMetrix that we wanted to be part of it.”

 

The Renaissance Venture Capital Fund is a Michigan-based fund that supports the growth of venture capital in Michigan while serving as a bridge between Michigan’s emerging innovation company community and its strong industrial and commercial base.

 

“ArborMetrix is positioned extremely well for taking a leadership role in healthcare analytics,” said Adrian Fortino, Vice President of Detroit Innovate. “We look forward to working with the team as they scale up nationally.”

 

Detroit Innovate is a Southeast Michigan-focused early stage investment fund targeting technologies in the healthcare, transportation, advanced manufacturing and resource efficiency sectors.

 

ArborMetrix CEO Brett Furst stated, “The local support for enabling fast-paced growth in Michigan companies is incredible. We are very excited to welcome Renaissance and Detroit Innovate into the ArborMetrix fold. Their involvement in accelerating our growth will certainly open up exciting new opportunities for ArborMetrix to expand across the U.S.”

 

TWEET THIS: .@ArborMetrix secures $1.3 M from @RENVCF, @DetroitInnovate to help expand nationally to meet demand for #clinical performance analytics

 

About the Renaissance Venture Capital Fund
Formed out of the groundbreaking “Road to Renaissance” initiative of Business Leaders for Michigan, the Renaissance Venture Capital Fund (RVCF) is the largest privately funded organization of its kind in the US. The investors in Renaissance recognized the importance of venture capital in the economic growth of the State as well as the financial rewards available to investors who mine the treasure of research and innovation present at Michigan’s world-class universities, institutions and corporations. Through its investment in top tier venture firms that are active in Michigan, as well as its own co-investments in emerging Michigan companies, the Renaissance Venture Capital Fund is helping to drive forward both innovation and growth of emerging companies in the region. For more information, visit http://www.renvcf.com/.

 

About Detroit Innovate
Detroit Innovate was launched by Invest Detroit as an early stage fund to fuel high-growth companies in the Detroit Region. The fund is part of Invest Detroit’s family of funds that serve as catalysts for targeted economic development. The fund targets enabling technologies in the healthcare, transportation, advanced manufacturing and resource efficiency sectors.

Visit http://www.detroitinnovate.com

 

About ArborMetrix
ArborMetrix, Inc., based in Ann Arbor, Mich., is a healthcare analytics and software firm specializing in quality measurement, cost-efficiency and performance improvement for surgical and other acute hospital and specialty-based care. The company focuses on developing rigorous data analysis and actionable business intelligence solutions that raise the bar on quality, performance, utilization and cost-efficiency for hospitals, health systems, specialty societies, quality collaboratives and health plans. ArborMetrix’s unique, cloud-based technology evolved from groundbreaking research by the company founders on improving the quality of surgical care and econometric performance measurement. For more information, visit www.arbormetrix.com, email info@arbormetrix.com or call 734-661-7944, ext. 7008.

 

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January 24, 2014 @ 3:58 am

Invest Detroit’s First Step Fund

Invest Detroit continues to actively support companies in the Detroit region with its First Step Fund (FSF). Based in downtown Detroit, First Step Fund is an early stage micro investment fund that was formed through an investment from the New Economy Initiative of Southeast Michigan.

 

While more and more funds are choosing to call Michigan home, few are like First Step Fund. In most cases, First Step Fund is the first institutional investment into a company. The industry agnostic fund has made 55 investments across southeast Michigan.  The fund has an interest in supporting women, minority and immigrant owned companies across the region.

 

First Step Fund’s recent investments include Avegant, Sky Specs and Kontextual. “These investments all fit First Step Fund’s overall investment strategy so well, and are the ideal representation of the range of businesses that can grow and thrive in the region,” said First Step Fund’s managing director, Adrian Fortino.

 

Avegant is a new platform that allows consumers to interact with media and data in new ways, and allow for new forms of storytelling.  The platform revolves around Avegant’s revolutionary virtual retinal display technology that interacts with eyes in the way that they naturally function. By reflecting light into the eyes, consumers can see media and data the way they’re supposed to be experienced: lifelike and vividly.

 

“First Step Fund saw an extraordinary and uniquely designed opportunity last year when we invested prior to the seed round Avegant closed late last year,” said Fortino. Avegant recently won a coveted CES Editors Choice at the 2014 Show and exceeded their goal in their Kickstarter campaign in less than four hours.

 

Sky Specs develops autonomous unmanned aerial vehicles that inspect infrastructure such as bridges, wind turbines, dams and sewers. SkySpecs couples the hardware with an analytics dashboard to interpret and map the massive amount of data gathered during flight.

 

“First Step Fund led Sky Specs’ $500,000 pre-seed round to finalize the first commercial product and effectively launch the company,” Fortino continued. “Sky Specs has market opportunities across several verticals and a remarkable team which has positioned it well with key strategic partners at a prototype stage.”

 

Kontextual helps companies build transparent, metric-driven cultures.  Its cloud- and mobile-based platform is the end result of decades of experience in the enterprise software market combined with cutting edge software skills and intensely beautiful interface design, all sprinkled with a healthy dose of lessons learned from social media.

 

“Business social enterprise software is a dynamic sector and Kontextual is positioned well with an experienced management team and great investment partners,” he added. “Kontextual fills a critical gap in the business operations software space.”

 

Looking forward, Invest Detroit is excited by the potential for First Step Fund as well as its recently-launched Detroit Innovate, a seed stage venture fund to fuel high-growth technology companies in the Detroit Region. Detroit Innovate focused on enabling technologies in healthcare, transportation, advanced manufacturing, and resource efficiency.

 

“Our deal flow has never been higher in volume and quality,” said Fortino. “We expect to continue at the brisk pace of 2013 where we invested in 10 new companies, if not more!”

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January 23, 2014 @ 3:55 pm

Beringea invests in UICO, innovator of the world’s most durable touchscreens

Beringea, LLC, a private equity firm providing growth capital to market-leading businesses, has announced its fund has led an investment in UICO, an innovator and manufacturer of highly durable touchscreen technology, headquartered in Elmhurst, Illinois. The investment will support UICO’s hiring plans and working capital needs as the company continues to grow and produce larger volume programs. Also participating in the financing round were existing investors, Ann Arbor, Mich.-based Plymouth Venture Partners, and Chicago-based Hyde Park Angels.

 

UICO supplies Fortune 1000 clients with the company’s duraTOUCH® touchscreens that work in the harshest environments–withstanding temperature extremes and rough handling–and that perform when wet, and with thick gloves. The company nearly tripled production during 2013, and has established strategic relationships in China and throughout the United States to prepare for significant growth over the next year and beyond. Sectors that benefit from UICO’s highly differentiated touch technology include automotive, agriculture, appliance, medical, military, marine, industrial and wearables.

 

“UICO has a robust, growing customer pipeline in a variety of industries; its superior water and glove touch performance is appealing to many different types of end users.  The proprietary, differentiated products UICO offers, managed by an experienced team, makes this an extremely promising investment for us,” said Mark Donnelly, principal at Beringea.

 

“Our partnership with Beringea comes at a key time in our company’s growth trajectory,” added Bahar Wadia, CEO of UICO. “We are now well-positioned to capture an even larger portion of the rapidly growing global market for durable touchscreens.”

 

About Beringea

Beringea, LLC provides equity and/or mezzanine debt to small- and-middle market companies. The Firm, which includes Michigan-based Beringea, LLC and its London, UK office Beringea LLP, invests in portfolio companies operating in a range of sectors, including health care, clean technology, manufacturing, media, Internet technologies and specialized consumer products.

 

With flexible capital solutions, extensive investing experience and offices in the U.S. and UK, Beringea’s team offers its portfolio companies the resources to grow their businesses and create value for shareholders. For more information, visit www.beringea.com.

 

In the United States of America, Beringea operates as an SEC-registered investment advisor, Beringea, LLC. In the United Kingdom, this document is issued by Beringea LLP, a firm authorized and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Beringea LLP is a limited liability partnership registered in England and Wales with company number OC342919, and its registered office is at 39 Earlham Street, London, WC2H 9LT, UK. This document is intended solely to provide information regarding Beringea’s potential financing capabilities for prospective portfolio companies.

 

About UICO

UICO is the maker of duraTOUCH®, the world’s most durable PCap touch technology. UICO’s innovative technology and solutions enable equipment manufacturers to deliver proven, best-in-class touch solutions in extreme environments of use. UICO is headquartered in Elmhurst, Illinois with key suppliers and manufacturing partnerships worldwide to support a large and growing customer base of leading OEMs in automotive, agriculture, appliance, medical, military, marine,  industrial and other commercial product segments. For more information, visit www.uico.com.

 

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January 2, 2014 @ 11:07 am

Baird Capital Opens Ann Arbor Office, Sees Michigan as Ripe with Potential

When global investment firm Baird Capital announced in 2013 that it was opening a Michigan office, investors – and entrepreneurs – took notice. Not only is the firm’s Ann Arbor office its first outside of a major metro area, it’s being headed up by David Gregorka, whose entrepreneurial roots grow deep in the state.

 

Before joining Baird Capital, Gregorka was working on several projects with the Office of Tech Transfer at the University of Michigan. He assumed this position after leaving HealthMedia, a venture-backed company he co-founded in Ann Arbor in 1998 that was acquired in 2008 by Johnson & Johnson.

 

Being deeply entrenched in Michigan’s entrepreneurial eco-system is a differentiator for Gregorka. “I’ve worked with all seven research universities in the state and most of the ecosystem partners, at the state and local levels, and can bring those relationships to bear in building a network in Michigan for Baird,” Gregorka explained. “Although we chose to locate in Ann Arbor, Baird is excited by what we are seeing across the state.”

 

Baird Capital’s venture capital team invests in early and growth stage companies in tech enabled services and health care. Since its inception, Baird Capital has invested approximately 50 percent from its three funds in Midwest companies.

 

“We see a strong pipeline of potential investments in Michigan in both IT and health care,” Gregorka explained. “This strong potential is consistent with Baird Capital’s overall investment strategy. As an organization, we are committed to partnering with leading entrepreneurs and helping them build great companies.”

 

Those partnerships and relationships are key to what Baird is and does – and was a critical factor in the firm’s decision to open an office in Michigan. Gregorka intends to use his experience and existing relationships to help Baird find the best investment opportunities in the state.

 

“Being here is a chance to work with entrepreneurs, regardless of whether they’re in Baird Capital’s ‘sweet spot’ for investments,” Gregorka explained. “Being a part of the entrepreneurial ecosystem is something that Baird Capital, as an organization, likes to do. You never know when an entrepreneur or company that isn’t a potential investment today will become a future partner.”

 

Baird Capital was an early investor in Accuri Cytometers, an Ann Arbor company that had a very successful exit. It is currently invested in Ann Arbor-based Molecular Imaging, a contract research organization that provides services to pharmaceutical companies and conducts small animal imaging studies. The company is on the fast track to success, having just expanded operations to the west coast to run a preclinical imaging center at the Sanford Consortium for Regenerative Medicine in La Jolla, Calif.

 

Baird Capital’s investment in Molecular Imaging is part of larger pool that also includes Michigan Venture Capital Association member Beringea. Baird typically syndicates with other investors and hopes to increase the deals it does with other Michigan firms.

 

“Ultimately, finding and making investments in IT services and health care companies – both early and growth stage – is the primary focus of Baird Capital’s work, including our office here in Michigan,” Gregorka said. “As an organization, the Baird team has been in the trenches as venture capitalists and as entrepreneurs, and we know what it takes to be successful. We see Michigan as a ripe environment for future success.”

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December 16, 2013 @ 3:04 am

Ford Chairman Investment Generates Attention for Michigan VCs

QuickPay is a parking start-up app that recently closed an additional $5.5 million of funding. This deal is generating attention for Michigan VCs, reflecting how our automotive heritage plays a role in creating our strong innovation economy. Chairman Bill Ford invested in QuickPay through MVCA member Fontinalis Partners.

 

Read the Venture Capital Post article.

 

 

 

 

 

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June 18, 2013 @ 5:02 pm

Michigan Venture Capital on ‘Michigan Matters’

Chris Rizik, CEO of Renaissance Venture Capital Fund and Hyaat Chaudhary, CEO of Outdoor Hub were interviewed on Michigan Matters this past Sunday. Watch them talk about the increase in venture capital funding in Michigan, sustained by the talent and technology.

Watch the Michigan Matters interview.

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May 20, 2013 @ 11:10 am

MVCA Research Report: Michigan Jumps to 15th for VC Activity, $242M Invested in 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE — MAY 20, 2013 – ANN ARBOR, MICH. — The Michigan Venture Capital Association’s annual research report, a compilation and analysis of investment activity, shows that 2012 was a banner year for venture capital (VC) in the state.  Compared to the national trend of declining VC funds and activity, funding activity and fund sizes in Michigan continued strong and steady growth last year.  In 2012, Michigan jumped from 25th to 15th in the national VC ranking — one of the largest increases in venture funding last year.

 

“The data reported in MVCA’s research report tell a compelling story about Michigan’s success in growing and nurturing an innovation-based economy,” said Carrie Jones, MVCA executive director.  “The venture capital community in Michigan continues to mature, with more VC under management among firms here than ever before as well as a steady increase in out-of-state funds establishing a presence in the state.  In tandem, Michigan’s entrepreneurial ecosystem continues to mature and strengthen, and more companies than ever before are attracting VC funding.”

 

The MVCA data shows that there are 29 venture capital firms doing business in Michigan. In 2012, venture capital firms invested $242 million in 33 deals in Michigan.  An additional $12.5 million in a combination of angel and pre-seed funding was invested into these same deals.

 

The state has 106 active companies that have received venture capital or angel investment. While the majority of these companies are in the life sciences, the number of companies in other sectors are growing, most notably those focused on information technology.

 

Growth in Michigan venture funds has been steadily trending upward.  In 2012, the amount invested by VCs, average fund size, capital under management all increased, as did available capital for new investments and the number of investment professionals. This growth has, in part, come from out-of-state funds opening offices in Michigan to tap into Michigan’s growing deal flow.

 

“Attracting outside investment to Michigan infuses the economy with new money that can help a company grow here,” Jones added.  “Entrepreneurs are taking notice of this trend; thanks to the successful venture community in Michigan, more entrepreneurs are considering the state as a destination to locate and grow their business.”

 

About the Michigan Venture Capital Association

The MVCA is a non-profit trade organization designed to bring together venture capital industry participants in the state of Michigan. The organization’s goal is to grow and sustain a vibrant venture capital community in Michigan. Membership includes private venture capital funds, corporate venture capital funds, private equity firms, angel investors, and entrepreneurial infrastructure participants. The MVCA is a vehicle to bring together industry participants and to provide a concerted voice for Michigan’s venture capital industry. For more information, visit www.michiganvca.org.

 

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April 12, 2013 @ 2:04 pm

MVCA-MEDC Roadshow June 19-21

We’re pleased to announce that the MVCA and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) are teaming up on a new initiative to attract out-of-state venture capital to Michigan.  Our goal is to get more regional VCs investing in great Michigan deals.  This summer, our team plans to visit venture capital hotbeds in the Great Lakes region and meet with the top VCs to build stronger regional connections, promote Michigan as a great place to do business, and most importantly promote our most compelling investment opportunities. Our first visit is slated for June 19-21 to Chicago, IL.

 

In anticipation of the Roadshow we need your input! To realize maximum returns, we’d like to construct an impressive deal-book of your best Michigan portfolio companies that will be in the market for additional funding within the next 6-12 months. We want to help attract any additional capital you need to fund your next round(s). Please complete a Portfolio Company Profile for any companies you wish to be included, and forward your entries to Emily Heintz at heintze@michigan.org no later than May 15, 2013.

 

Subsequent to receiving any interest from VCs in your portfolio companies, we will contact your firm directly to arrange introductions. We then plan to host any interested out-of-state funds here in Michigan, and with your help, to facilitate the path to investment and leave a great impression for future activity.

 

We’re excited about this opportunity to help expand the Michigan venture market and would appreciate any feedback you have in making this a successful initiative. Feel free to contact us with your questions, concerns, or input at your earliest convenience.

 

Contacts:

 

Carrie Jones                                                                                     Mike Flanagan

Executive Director – MVCA                                                             Director, Equity Capital Programs – MEDC

PH:  734-929-9970                                                                          PH:  517-373-1465

cjones@michiganvca.org                                                              flanaganm@michigan.org

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February 20, 2013 @ 8:48 am

Hopen Life Science Ventures’ Expert Team Committed to Creating Culture of Innovation in Michigan

Founded by a team with deep roots in life sciences, Hopen Life Science Ventures is shining a light on all that the Midwest has to offer young healthcare companies. Between its two funds, Hopen manages more than $65 million, which it prefers to invest in the region. Hopen is headquartered in Grand Rapids and recently opened an office in Cleveland.

 

Hopen Life Science Fund I invested in a portfolio of seven companies that have raised over $110 million of total syndicated investment. The Fund I portfolio attracted the attention of other private investors in the region who wanted to invest with Hopen. Hopen Life Science Fund II was formed in 2011 and now totals $40 million.

 

“We believe the network of expertise at Hopen is a huge differentiator and an advantage. The Hopen team grew up in life science, and we apply these experiences to the deals we consider,” said Mark Olesnavage, a managing director at Hopen. “We are proud that we can use our technical expertise and experience to invest in early to mid-stage life science companies – investments that are viewed as inherently risky.”

 

With healthcare budgets under the microscope, Hopen is particularly sensitive to innovation that lowers total costs. That strategy recently led the firm to participate in a syndicate with fellow Michigan VC firm Arboretum Ventures, co-investing in Fidelis. Fidelis, based outside of Chicago, offers an innovative approach to address the individual needs of patients dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid. The investment, which is a departure from Hopen’s historical investments in segments like drugs and devices, was made possible because of the firm’s team of advisors and their extended networks.

 

Hopen’s other recent investments include companies in Michigan and throughout the Midwest:

  • Tolera Therapeutics, based in Kalamazoo, Mich., is developing its lead drug for induction during kidney transplantation. The drug has completed Phase II and should be ready to begin Phase III late this year.
  • Metabolic Solutions Development Company (MSDC), a Kalamazoo, Mich.-based developer of novel therapeutics for metabolic diseases, whose first two drugs for type-2 diabetes are currently in phase 2 clinical trials.
  • NeoChord, based in Minnetonka, Minn., a medical device innovator aimed at mitral valve repair in the heart, which is conducting an ongoing clinical trial in Europe.
  • Transcorp Spine, a Grand Rapids medical device company providing solutions for compressions of the cervical spine, which is in the beginning stages of developing regional commercial sales.
  • Intervention Insights, a bioinformatics platform developed in Grand Rapids, informs personalized cancer therapies.

 

To Olesnavage and the team at Hopen Life Science Ventures, the future looks bright.  “We’re bullish about the future,” he said.  “We are confident in our team and our strategy, and that includes our commitment to the Midwest. Syndicating capital here by building the reputation of what’s here is a huge opportunity. The more success stories the region can have, the stronger our case.”

 

“Individuals in the Midwest and Michigan have a strong work ethic and sense of values that make companies here an attractive investment,” he added. “People are willing to work hard, but at the end of the day, it’s about creating a culture where people are willing to take a chance and innovate. We’re heading in that direction, and that’s exciting.”

 

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The MVCA is a non-profit trade organization designed to bring together venture capital industry participants in the state of Michigan. The organization's goal is to grow and sustain a vibrant venture capital community in Michigan.
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