Grand Ventures I LP’s lead investment in a Chicago digital health company typifies what’s occurring in venture capital in Michigan and neighboring states: Funds based in the region are backing Great Lakes-based startups.
The idea sounds simple: Create a $150 million to $200 million fund supported by foundations and university endowments to back venture capital investors in the Great Lakes states.
GRAND RAPIDS — Start Garden Inc. says it’s gaining traction on an effort launched two years ago that put more emphasis on diversity.
As Michigan’s venture capital industry made further gains in 2018, it made some progress on one front that’s been the focus of attention the last few years: Diversity. Statistics tucked into the Michigan Venture Capital Association’s 2019 research report show an uptick over five years in investments into startups companies led by women and minorities.
Venture capital funds based in Michigan more than doubled the amount they invested in startups in 2018, although the money went to fewer companies.
Grand Angels’ formation of an affiliate investment group in Detroit brings more capital and investors into the field to support startup companies in Michigan.
GRAND RAPIDS — A proposed contract between Start Garden Inc. and the Grand Rapids SmartZone would put in place new goals for fostering local tech startups. Rather than focusing on certain activities, the proposed contract establishes outcomes such as adding 10 new tech startups annually to the SmartZone service area, with six of those companies over two years owned by minorities or women, and providing service to 15 startups a year through its business incubator on Pearl Street in downtown.
KALAMAZOO — The Kalamazoo affiliate of Grand Angels easily exceeded expectations after launching more than a year ago.
The Michigan Venture Capital Association presented Jody Vanderwel, the former president of Grand Angels, with its Lifetime Achievement Award.
A new $20 million venture capital fund aims not only to generate returns for investors but also address a wide gender gap in the investing industry.