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Michigan Pre-Seed Capital Fund Invests $1.5 Million in Six Startups

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ANN ARBOR (WWJ) – Six more Michigan companies in industries ranging from bicycles to off-grid power to high-tech health have received investments from the Michigan Pre-Seed Capital Fund, totaling $1.5 million.

So far, the Michigan Pre-Seed Capital Fund, a collaborative effort of Michigan’s SmartZones to support startups’ product commercialization, has awarded 89 Michigan companies with seed funding totaling more than $20 million.

“Across the state, companies are seeking capital to support product commercialization, which is an exciting sign that our entrepreneurial culture is both thriving and maturing,” said Joe Licavoli, who manages capital programs for Ann Arbor Spark, the economic development organization that runs the pre-seed fund for the state. “The Michigan Pre-Seed Capital Fund helps these emerging companies attract and secure the additional investment capital that they need to continue to grow here in the state.”

The six companies recently awarded Michigan Pre-Seed Capital Fund investment are AutoBike, AlertWatch, Beet Analytics Technology, IROA Technologies, Patient Provider Communications, and TM3 Systems.

Troy-based AutoBike designs and builds automatic shifting bicycles that make riding a bike easy, comfortable and fun.

AlertWatch, based in Ann Arbor, develops patient monitoring software to help reduce medical errors.

Beet Analytics Technology, based in Plymouth, is a manufacturing enterprise software company. Beet has developed the Machine EKG Technology that can capture manufacturing process intelligence. The Envision Factory Smart System, software based on the patented technology, delivers ability to prevent and pinpoint potential failures in any automated and industrial operations.

Ann Arbor-based IROA Technologies develops metabolic profiling tools used to create unique chemical signatures in molecules for accurate biochemical analysis and quantitation in multiple applications including general research, bioprocess, toxicology and diagnostics. Its slogan is “making metabolic profiling easy.”

Patient Provider Communications Inc., based in Ann Arbor, is a start-up healthcare technology company developing a multilingual interactive bedside care system to improve provider response to and fulfillment of patient requests.

TM3 Systems of Royal Oak serves off-grid power markets such as defense, remote industry, and developing nations with its suite of smart, portable microgrid products.

Michigan Pre-Seed Capital Fund companies have attracted more than $27 million in matching grant and equity funds. Combined, Michigan Pre-Seed Capital Fund companies have helped to create more than 200 new jobs in Michigan.

The Michigan Pre-Seed Capital Fund is an equity fund that invests in technology-based companies to support business formation and acceleration.

To qualify for the Michigan Pre-Seed Capital Fund, start-up technology-based companies must have the sponsorship of a local SmartZone. In addition to SmartZone sponsorship, companies must have received grant, angel or venture capital funding as a match for the Michigan Pre-Seed Capital Fund investment.

The returns that the Michigan Pre-Seed Capital Fund receives from its investments will be redeployed by the Fund as first round capital to more Michigan-based start-ups.

Funds for this initiative were provided by the 21st Century Jobs Fund, a Michigan Strategic Fund program designed to accelerate the growth and diversification of Michigan’s economy.  The Michigan Economic Development Corp., a public-private partnership between the state and local communities, provides administrative support for the 21st Century Jobs Fund. For more information on the 21st Century Jobs Fund initiative, visit www.MichiganAdvantage.org.

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