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A dip in U.S. Small Business Administration lending in Michigan during the past year doesn’t mean fewer businesses are borrowing money.

Survey data show business owners across Michigan are decidedly less upbeat about their prospects for the coming six months than they were last spring, although they were better prepared for a slowing U.S. economy than their counterparts in other states.

After closing fundraising on its flagship fund to invest more than $15.1 million in early stage Michigan-based businesses, a Grand Rapids venture fund can now focus on building its investment portfolio and recording its first exit.

When it came time for a Standish-based plastic molding company to grow, the company went looking for a loan to finance an expansion. But the firm didn’t qualify for a loan because of a lack of adequate collateral, the result of the recession that pushed down the valuation of many companies.

Michigan Accelerator raises $15.1M for first fund

Written by | Sunday, 30 September 2012 14:43 |

A Grand Rapids venture capital firm has closed fundraising on its flagship fund, raising more than $15.1 million to invest in early stage businesses based in Michigan.

Hopen broadens Midwest reach

Written by | Sunday, 30 September 2012 10:44 |

Opening a Cleveland office staffed by an industry veteran gives Hopen Life Science Ventures a broader presence in the Midwest to scout for potential deals with life sciences startups.

Credit unions continue growth

Written by | Sunday, 16 September 2012 18:16 |

Credit unions across Michigan posted strong growth during the past year, as the state’s economy picked up and drove loan demand, particularly among businesses.

Credit unions get OK for equity, VC investing

Written by | Sunday, 16 September 2012 17:51 |

Small businesses across Michigan could soon have a new source to tap for investment capital: credit unions.

Community Shores posts profit, seeks options

Written by | Tuesday, 04 September 2012 09:43 |

Returning to profitability after more than three years of losses is just the first step of what remains a long journey toward getting Community Shores Bank Corp. back to sound financial footing.

In hiring a pair of seasoned commercial lenders in West Michigan, Flagstar Bank seeks to carve out a larger role in the market as part of a corporate strategy to diversify its revenue base.

GR Bank uses JOBS Act to save on reporting costs

Written by | Saturday, 21 July 2012 23:45 |

GRANDVILLE — Grand River Commerce Inc. joined a growing number of small community banks around the nation, and became the first in Michigan, to take advantage of a new federal law and save thousands of dollars annually in regulatory reporting costs. 

The three-year-old parent company of Grand River Bank filed a notice June 29 with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to deregister its shares and suspend regulatory reporting. The change takes effect 90 days after the filing.

KALAMAZOO — They've done business together for five years and each was looking at its next step. 

So the Kalamazoo-based Southwest Michigan Life Science Venture Fund and an Illinois venture fund decided to work together even closer.

Microloan program looks to expand

Written by | Friday, 06 July 2012 13:03 |

WEST MICHIGAN — Like so many entrepreneurs, Deb Tacoma arrived at a crossroads with her business. To get to the next level, her company needed additional funding.

The problem was that her business was too small for investors and didn't have enough sales to qualify for a conventional bank loan. So Tacoma turned a year ago to Grand Rapids Opportunities for Women, a Grand Rapids organization that supports entrepreneurs and at the time was offering loans to small businesses under a pilot program that has since led to the formation of a permanent microloan fund.

WEST MICHIGAN — At more than 365,000-square-foot and occupying 35 acres along one of the region's busiest commercial corridors, the Rogers Plaza Town Center sat on the market for some time until a Texas investor bought it this month. 

The sale of the foreclosed property along 28th Street in Wyoming to Sun Valley Ltd. from Citizens Bank and U.S. Bank reflects an improved marketplace that has led to increased interest in and movement of commercial real estate that banks acquired during the recession through foreclosure or repossession.

WEST MICHIGAN — The pending acquisition of 21 offices from Independent Bank extends Chemical Financial Corp.'s footprint across the Michigan and furthers its ongoing expansion and growth strategy. 

The Midland-based parent company of Chemical Bank will pay about $12.4 million to acquire six Independent Bank offices in Battle Creek and 15 in Northeast Michigan. Under the deal, Chemical Bank will assume about $420 million in customer deposits, pushing total deposits statewide to nearly $6 billion. Chemical will also acquire about $40 million in loans and expand its branch network to 163 offices across the Lower Peninsula.

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