Spring 2021

MBIA Annual Member Meeting and Workshop

The 2021 MBIA Annual Member Meeting and Workshops will take place on May 17, 2021 from 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM. The event will feature a member meeting as well as four exciting workshops. A detailed agenda will be sent via email soon, The meeting will be held virtually via Zoom. You can register now at https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZIscu6hrzooHtNQlI2fYrNkfDnPz3X0A2so.

Michigan Strategic Fund Approves Extensions for Business Incubators

Aimed at supporting the continued economic growth and stimulation of Michigan’s entrepreneurial ecosystem, the Michigan Strategic Fund (MSF)—administered by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)—has approved funding extensions totaling $1.8 million for six statewide programs. Each program strategically capitalizes on resources allocated through state funding to promote early-stage startups and the commercialization of cutting-edge technologies.

Funding and amended guidelines approved by MSF include:
  • 2015 Business Incubator Gateway Grants ($544,613) Central Michigan University Research Corporation, Lansing Economic Area Partnership, Macomb-Oakland University Incubator, Muskegon Innovation Hub, Midland Tomorrow and Western Michigan University Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine
  • 2016 Business Incubator Grants ($326,060) Innovation Marquette Enterprise Corporation, Michigan Tech Enterprise Corporation, Lenawee Now and Lakeshore Advantage
  • 2017 Business Incubator Gateway Grants ($120,535) Oakland University Incubator, Economic Development Alliance of St. Clair County
  • Lake Superior State University ($40,000)
  • Lawrence Technological University ($100,000)
The Business Incubator Gateway Grant program further supports Gateway representatives in: vetting and welcoming tech companies into the local ecosystem; providing an overview of the Michigan statewide tech ecosystem; recruiting and developing other tech companies to local SmartZones; developing local SmartZone business activities and providing strategic business guidance; helping companies with fundraising efforts; and connecting companies with various available entrepreneurial resources across the state.

Read more here.

Happy Anniversary!

Congratulations to the individual and institutional members who are celebrating anniversaries with MBIA in February, March, and April. We value your engagement with the organization and are so happy to have you as part of the group.

Madelyn Pinder with the WMed Innovation Center has been a member since February 2016.
Bill Mayer at Ann Arbor SPARK has been a member since February 2012.
Fred Earl and Fred Molnar at the Michigan Life Science Innovation Center have been members since February 2012.
Amanda Chocko and Angela Huesman at Start Garden have been members since March 2016.
MBIA Board Member Carmen Wells Quigg from the University of Michigan Economic Growth Institute has been a member since March 2016.
• MBIA Board Member Bonny Dowdy from the GVSU applied medical device institute has been a member since March 2019.
Dan Jamison from the MTEC SmartZone has been a member since March 2019.
Elke Lipka and Marquicia Pierce from TSRL, In have been members since March 2016.
Tony Willis from the Lansing Economic Area Partnership (LEAP) has been a member since April 2012.


MBIA Board Updates

Events & Training Committee (Cheryl LeClaire-Chair, Madelyn Pinder, Sandra Cochrane, Jeff McIntyre). There will be two more Virtual Member Meetings in 2021. They will take place via Zoom at 2:00 PM on each scheduled day.

• August 16th meeting will be hosted by the MTEC SmartZone
• November 8th meeting will be hosted by Ann Arbor SPARK

Mark your calendars now and plan to participate. We'll see you then!

Around the State


The MEDC will partner with Ann Arbor SPARK to launch the Michigan STEM Forward internship program on a statewide level. SPARK has run the program on a local level through the Ann Arbor/Ypsilanti SmartZone with a decade of positive results. In scaling the program up, MEDC will work in partnership with SPARK to place 425-450 STEM students currently attending Michigan colleges annually into STEM-focused internships throughout Michigan. With the support of a $1.5 million grant approved today by the MSF Board, SPARK will contribute to 50 percent of the interns’ pay, and participating companies will pay the remaining 50 percent. SPARK will track the employment status of the interns for at least 12 months to measure their retention in Michigan as well as those remaining in those knowledge positions. Stay tuned for more information as this program rolls out.

InBIA News

April 26 – 30 2021

For 35 years, InBIA’s annual conference – the International Conference on Business Incubation (ICBI) – has been the primary venue for incubation and other entrepreneurial support professionals to share best practices, proven strategies, effective tools and relevant insights with an audience of peers. As the world recovers from the impacts of a destructive global pandemic, connecting with peers and sharing information is more important than ever before. ICBI 35 will be a week-long virtual event featuring a wide range of sessions and networking opportunities. Please visit the event page to see more detail or to register.

Verizon's Accelerating America Plan

Verizon is fiercely committed to solving the digital divide because connectivity and technology should be available to all. That's why they developed a recent white paper that proposes a bold, comprehensive, and national broadband solution to connect people and communities. This plan builds on prior efforts and supplements existing programs. Here are a few key points provided by MBIA member Brianna Ellison:
  • Congress should allocate funds for a new broadband program that supplements the existing Lifeline program.
  • Eligible recipients would receive a monthly benefit of $20-$50 dollars that is distributed onto electronic benefit transfer cards similar to (or the same as) what they may already have for other government assistance programs.
  • Recipients could use the benefit to pay for any qualifying wireline, wireless service, or both.
A recent survey of U.S. business leaders conducted by Verizon found that speed, advanced performance, and stability are seen as 5G accelerators for business transformation. Top-line results of the survey:
  • Seven in 10 (69%) decision-makers believe 5G will help their company overcome the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Nearly half (48%) of decision-makers said their companies have already provided or are planning to provide a 5G-capable smartphone or device to employees within the next six months
  • 76% of respondents say that mobile edge computing (MEC) is important to their company
  • Decision-makers largely agree that 5G will create new opportunities for their company (80%), their industry (79%), and their role (79%)
Learn more about Accelerating America at https://www.verizon.com/about/our-company/accelerating-america.

Read the executive summary at https://www.verizon.com/about/sites/default/files/verizon-accelerating-america-broadband-executive-summary.pdf.

Watch the YouTube video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jKxW_jdzYdg&feature=youtu.be.

Member Tweets

MTEC SmartZone @mtecsmartzone · Feb 10
Are you looking to finance your innovation? Check out this fantastic opportunity TODAY and learn from our very own Patrick Visser, Chief Commercial Officer at MTEC SmartZone. Sign up today: https://buff.ly/2MK7s4Y

Ann Arbor SPARK @AnnArborSPARK · Mar 17
Join @Newlab on 3/25 for a discussion about policies, partnerships & solutions to improve mobility at the neighborhood level & address challenges that sit at the nexus of transportation. Learn more & register.

LEAP @purelansing · Mar 23
Discrimination against any population has profound social and economic impacts on entire communities. According to Stop AAPI Hate, businesses are the primary discrimination site, accounting for 35.4% of AAPI hate incidents logged last year.

Economic Growth Inst @Econ_Growth · Feb 15
U-M’s Economic Growth Institute awarded US STEM grant to boost cybersecurity within manufacturing

Lakeshore Advantage @Lakeshoreadvant · Mar 16
A year ago this week...Lakeshore Advantage had just sent out our first “COVID-19 for Business Resources” e-newsletter. It was the first of 23 e-blasts over the next three months filled with information to help businesses navigate the impact of this virus. https://lakeshoreadvantage.com/news-events/bl

ZenBusiness @ZenBusinessPBC · Mar 23
Tune in now to listen to our CEO @RossInAustin on the #AllBusiness Podcast. As he sits down with @JeffreyHayzlett to talk about small businesses and how they are growing during the pandemic on @csuiteradio !

OU INC @OUINC · Jan 12
OU INC client GryphonHR receives grant for innovative HR compliance technology http://oakland.edu/oumagazine/new
MBIA Newsletter Template 2020 - Spring 2021