April 2012

Incubation In the News...

Helping Small-Business Owners Find the Perfect Mentor - NY Times

GLEQ to Award More Than $210,000 in June - GLEQ

Presenting...a truly mobile startup. Literally! - CNET

The best of NY Tech Day, a showcase of startups - CNET



DeVos: Building The Next Michigan, One Startup At A Time

Matt Roush

 GRAND RAPIDS — Rick DeVos may not quite be a billionaire all by himself, but as grandson of one of the co-founders of Amway, he’s certainly got the resources to do just about anything he wants.

So out of the million possibilities, it’s downright refreshing to see what he’s doing in his hometown of Grand Rapids.

DeVos, co-creator of the Momentum Michigan and Five By Five startup incubator concepts, not to mention the wildly successful ArtPrize art competition that draws huge crowds to a rapidly redeveloping downtown Grand Rapids, gave his thoughts on how to continue Michigan’s transformation into a startup hotbed Tuesday night as opening keynoter of the Michigan Business Incubator Association’s annual conference.

The affable, down-to-earth DeVos said he’s “by no means an expert or a guru” on startup incubation, “I’m just simply a guy who’s been blessed with the resources and a passion to get involved in startups.” But he said he’s learned three simple keys to startup success.


Know an Incubator? Let us know!

 We are expanding membership this year! If you come in contact with any incubators, incubator programs, business accelerators or any organization involved in the Michigan incubation industry, (who are not already MBIA members) let us know!

Send an e-mail to michigan.incubation@gmail.com

MBIA Announces Incubator Awards Winners at 2012 Annual Conference

 Grand Rapids, MI (April 23, 2012) - The Michigan Business Incubator Association held its annual conference at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel on Wednesday, April 18th. The event brought together over 60 members, associates and other individuals involved in the business incubator industry.

This year’s conference included the announcement of the 2012 Incubator Awards, which honors one business incubation program and one client company that exemplify the best of the industry. Ann Arbor SPARK Central was awarded the Incubator of the Year Award while Phenometrics, Inc was awarded the Client of the Year Award.

Located in the heart of downtown Ann Arbor, SPARK Central’s Business Incubator offers an ideal location for launching, developing and growing innovation-based companies. SPARK Central offers a host of programs and services including affordable office and meeting space, administrative support services, advanced communications technology, mentoring, networking and educational events, marketing, recruiting, legal, and other business-building professional services. By combining crucial infrastructure with broad spectrum support services, the incubator provides all the advantages of a dynamic business environment without costly overhead expenses.

Phenometrics, Inc., is a scientific instrument and research company dedicated to accelerating algal discoveries and supporting algae science research. Located in the Technology Innovation Center in East Lansing, Phenometrics is developing the Photo Bioreactor™ (PBR) and Sensor Matrix System. This system is not only for the biofuel industry but can be applied to the algae food and agriculture industries as well as waste management applications.



Incubator Conference Tackles Crowdfunding

Matt Roush

 Ken Kousky is president of Blue Water Angels, a network of private investors in Michigan’s Great Lakes Bay region.

But he figures the passage of the recent federal JOBS act just might put angel networks out of business.

And he thinks that’s great.

Kousky spoke Wednesday at the Michigan Business Incubators Association’s 2012 annual conference. He said the law allows average Americans to be solicited by entrepreneurs for small investments in startups.

“This is huge,” Kousky said. “It obsoletes the primary function of the angel club.”

Kousky said he believes Americans will make smart investments under the new rules. And given that very few actively managed investments that Americans buy now for their retirements beat overall market averages, Kousky said: “I believe that crowdfuncting is going to be smarter money than what you see on Wall Street.”

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is to issue rules within the next 90 days regulating investments to be made under the law.

There are limits on the total amount that can be raised by a small business under the law — $1 million without audited financial statements, $2 million with.

Kousky said the new law is particularly perfect for restaurants and other food service businesses. “If you need to raise $500,000 to remodel, give somebody who gives you $1,000 free dinner on Tuesdays for a year,” Kousky said.

Nonprofits and film and music productions are also naturals for the funding, Kousky said.

Current Web sites for crowdsourcing include kickstarter.com, indiegogo.com, peerbackers.com and rockethub.com.

MBIA Template 1 - April 2012

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