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[From]: “$25 million to support Michigan entrepreneurs”

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LANSING, Mich. (WXYZ) – The Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) announced Wednesday that $25 million will be awarded to several organizations.

The state will give the money to eight organizations that will support entrepreneurs. The money will not only help the launch of new businesses throughout the state, but it will also continue to help those businesses grow over time.

“Early-stage companies require seed capital and access to a strong network of public and private resources,” said MEDC President and CEO Michael A. Finney. “We are confident that with the funding of these organizations and the types of programs, we will continue to accelerate the growth of innovative technology start-ups in Michigan.”

The money is all part of the state’s 21st Century Jobs Fund. Started in 2005, this 10-year initiative is a Michigan Strategic Fund program that is administered by the MEDC. The primary goal is to accelerate the growth and diversification of Michigan’s economy.

Below is a list of some of the organizations that have received awards from the MSF on a two to three year basis:

· Ann Arbor SPARK, $10.8 million: Michigan Pre-Seed Capital Fund, a statewide co-investment program in collaboration with all Michigan SmartZones that makes investments in pre-seed stage companies; Accelerate Michigan Innovation Competition, an annual business competition that awards $1 million in cash prizes to start-up and emerging companies; and the Michigan Angel Fund, a new fund that will invest in Michigan start-up companies.

· Biosciences Research & Commercialization Center (BRCC) of Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, $3.8 million: Statewide pre-seed fund that will invest in life science start-ups.

· Biotechnology Business Consultants (BBC), Ann Arbor, $1.6 million: Statewide support for Michigan companies to secure funding through federal Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs.

· Detroit Creative Corridor Center (DC3), $400,000: Creative Producers, a program that will deliver targeted business acceleration services to early and second stage businesses in the digital and media production fields.

· Great Lakes Entrepreneurs Quest (GLEQ), Lansing, $1.1 million: Statewide annual business plan competition that provides a network of volunteer coaching, investor talent, and entrepreneurial support programs for early stage companies.

· Inforum Center for Leadership, Detroit and Grand Rapids, $700,000: Implementation of two programs focused on high-growth women entrepreneurs: ACTiVATE, a technology commercialization curriculum, and Astia, a global network of mentors and investors..

· Michigan Small Business & Technology Development Center (SBTDC), Grand Rapids, $3.5 million: Business Accelerator Fund, a fund that can be accessed by participating business accelerators statewide to provide specialized business acceleration services and resources regardless of their client’s geography.

· Michigan Venture Capital Association (MVCA), Ann Arbor, $3.1 million: Entrepreneur-in-Residence and CEO placement programs, to improve talent in entrepreneurial companies; the Michigan Venture Fellows program, to develop talent for Michigan venture capital firms; and the Angel Network Growth program, to strengthen angel investment networks across the state.

For more information regarding The Michigan Economic Development Corporation initiatives and programs, visit the website at