New funds would seek to create more venture investors in Michigan

March 4, 2010 – Business Review West Michigan

A group of West Michigan-based investors will likely submit a proposal to a fund the state is forming to support startup businesses and spur a new generation of home-grown venture capitalists. The Michigan Economic Development Corp. hopes the so-called “accelerator funds” can begin to address the pressing need for more early-stage capital in Michigan. “That is the lubricant for creating new industries locally,” said Dale Grogan, vice president of business and transaction management at The Charter Group in Grand Rapids who’s working with a West Michigan group that hopes to submit a proposal. “There’s been a dearth of that in the state in the past, and there’s been plenty of opportunities here,” Grogan said. “From our perspective, if we can fill an important role in the availability of capital, we can get some wins.” By providing the seed money, the SEIC Board hopes to attract seasoned investors to groom prospective venture capitalists who could ultimately form their own Michigan-based venture funds. more

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