©2016 Michigan Economic Development Corporation

Michigan Commercialization and Investment Successes Celebrated

Wednesday, September 20, 2000

Kathleen McMahon
(517) 335-4590

Awards Honoring Top Businesses in Venture Capital, Life Sciences, Advanced Manufacturing and Information Technology DistributedMichigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) officials commended several organizations yesterday for their successful commercialization endeavors and venture capital investments at the Michigan Investment and Commercialization Success Celebration.At the ceremony, which took place at the Michigan State Capitol Rotunda, Richard Snyder, chair of the MEDC executive committee and Doug Rothwell, MEDC president and CEO, distributed awards in four areas of commercialization success including: venture capital, advanced manufacturing, life sciences and information technology.“The winners exemplify the successful transfer of technology to commercialization,” Snyder said.“Commercialization success in these important industries is key to helping the state develop into a national leader in the technology-driven economy.”In each of the categories, one organization was recognized for its outstanding achievement in the field.These “outstanding achievers” were determined by New Enterprise Forum (NEF) ratings process.NEF is a volunteer-based organization dedicated to assisting start-up companies.Organizations were nominated for the awards by Michigan universities and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. In the venture capital category, EDF Ventures of Ann Arbor was named the outstanding achiever.This company was selected for its focus on Michigan based companies.In 1999, EDF invested $4.2 million in start-up companies.This year, the company has already invested $5.9 million.EDF has played a key role in the growth of some up and coming companies like Think & Do software, Innovative IT Solutions, Centromine and Auxein Corporation. Other winners in the venture capital category include:

  • Detroit Investment Fund, Detroit
  • White Pine Management LLC, Ann Arbor
  • Motor Enterprises, Inc., Detroit
  • Avalon Investments, Ann Arbor
  • Peninsula Capital Partners, Detroit
  • TD Lighthouse Capital Fund, Ann Arbor
  • Wind Point Partners, Southfield
  • The M Group, Birmingham
  • Sloan Ventures, Birmingham
In the advanced manufacturing category, Precision Optical Manufacturing (POM) of Plymouth was singled out as the outstanding achiever.POM is a leader in direct metal deposition technology.POM is also an OEM machine builder, engineering service bureau and contract manufacturer of complex, three-dimensional metal parts using a unique direct metal fabrication process.Based on technology developed at the University of Michigan, POM is a premiere example of advanced manufacturing technology emerging from a Michigan university.Other recognized winners in advanced manufacturing include:
  • Integrated Sensing Systems, Ypsilanti
  • Vantek Corporation, Midland
  • Thermal Wave Imaging, Inc., Ferndale
  • Somero Enterprises, Houghton
Another industry with several Michigan commercialization success stories is information technology.The outstanding achiever in this category was Interlink Networks of Ann Arbor.Spun out of MERIT and University of Michigan, Interlink Networks provides the three A’s to the e-commerce world, authentication, authorization and accounting functions.With 20 employees and $5 million raised from companies, like Siemens and Nokia, Interlink Networks is staged to grow at the rate of 300 percent over the next year.Other winners in information technology include:
  • Clarity, Troy
  • Soar Technology, Ann Arbor
  • Strategic Interactive, Inc., Lansing
  • ERL LLC, Lansing
  • ESI North America, Shelby Township
Michigan commercialization developments in the life science industry are likely to skyrocket over the next 20 years with $1 billion in funding available from the life sciences corridor.However, several life sciences commercialization success stories have already taken place including the outstanding achiever, Southfield-based Lumigen, Inc.Nominated by Wayne State University, this company is involved in the development of clinical diagnostic based on chemiluminescent markers.With 35 employees, $15 million in sales and more than 20 patents, Lumigen is on the road to success.Other winners in this category include:
  • Antel Biosystems, Lansing
  • Pioneer Surgical Technologies, Marquette
  • LEC Tech, East Lansing
  • Health Media, Inc., Ann Arbor
  • Oxford Biomedical Research, Inc., Oxford
“These awards are designed to encourage further partnerships between Michigan universities and businesses,” said Rothwell.“Recognizing those successes will, hopefully, encourage further development of technology-oriented entrepreneurial initiatives that are vital for a positive economic outlook.”