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After more than a decade of private and public investments, the growth in Michigan’s venture capital industry has created a large demand for further investments to increase the available funds and support previously funded startups.

The amount of venture capital under management in Michigan grew more than 20 percent in 2014, continuing the industry’s strong momentum while creating further need for additional growth to support future investments.

Blackford Capital eyes new $100M fund

Written by | Sunday, 29 March 2015 22:00 |

Grand Rapids-based Blackford Capital plans to launch a second private equity fund later this year that, like its predecessor, will focus on investing in manufacturing businesses in Michigan, MiBiz has learned.

If two recent examples are any indication, companies in West Michigan seem attracted to the promise of securities-based crowdfunding, but often find better and more lucrative offers from traditional investment avenues.

Just eight months after launching the company to acquire a portion of Johnson Controls Inc.’s automotive interiors unit, Motus Integrated Technologies LLC has cut a deal to expand its business.

As Byron Center-based SpartanNash Co. continues to focus on integrating the two food distribution and grocery retail operations that it merged 15 months ago, executives say they could be ready to consider additional acquisitions after another three months.

Selling a business requires a lot of preparation that many owners don’t always go through prior to pursuing a prospective buyer.

Reporter's Notebook: New Math

Written by | Sunday, 01 March 2015 22:00 |

Rick DeVos formed Start Garden and its predecessors, 5x5 Night and Momentum, to change the entrepreneurial and investment culture in West Michigan.

As it works to close two deals, Chemical Financial Corp. wants to increase its number of outstanding shares to finance pending mergers and perhaps structure future acquisitions.

Commercial lending by credit unions could get a boost through an agreement between two federal agencies that would increase access to credit for small businesses.

The regional economic recovery “is one of the most impressive across the Midwest region,” led by the manufacturing sector that’s now followed by expansion in other industries, according to the latest PNC outlook that covers a broad market that includes Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, Battle Creek and Lansing.

As the availability of venture capital increases further in Michigan, investors are steering more money and cutting more deals to invest in technology-based sectors.

Grand River Bank raises $10.6M to drive growth

Written by | Sunday, 15 February 2015 16:00 |

Raising $10.6 million provides Grand River Bank’s parent company with added capital to drive further growth and pursue new business as some competitors are either now part of larger banks or are merging into larger institutions.

For any business owner who’s seeking a buyer and worries about what will happen to his or her company in the long term, cutting a deal with another family could very well represent an option to consider.

Venture capital investors put almost twice the amount of money into Michigan companies in 2014 as they did the year before, continuing the industry’s momentum.

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