3 Takeaways with Dale Grogan of Michigan Accelerator Fund I

Kathleen Achtenberg

Monday, May 20, 2019

Dale Grogan, managing director of Michigan Accelerator Fund I (MAF-I), knows what startups and early-stage companies are going through. As the founder and owner of numerous businesses, he’s been there himself, raising more than $30 million in funds.

Now, he’s using his background and expertise to help business owners and investors bring their own hard work to commercialization.

Supported by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s Entrepreneurship & Innovation Initiative, MAF-I is a venture capital fund that invests in early-stage, Michigan-based companies focusing on life sciences technologies. Using its knowledge and network, MAF-I staff also help these companies find the right connections to grow even further.

Dale shares three takeaways on what investors want to hear in entrepreneurs’ presentations and how startups can benefit from better knowing their audience. In addition to the three takeaways in the video, Dale provided a few additional tips for those hoping to take their idea from concept to commercialization:

  1. An entrepreneur should have some sort of formal plan—whether it’s a pitch deck or a full business plan—before pitching. A plan is truly a road map and should cover everything from the business—how it’s going to be operated; who’s going to operate it; what the market is; what the competitive factors are; and, most importantly for professional investors, what are the financial implications?
  2. Michigan has a robust investor network, and the Michigan Venture Capital Association is probably the best starting point for determining ways to access venture capital. MVCA is a conglomeration of all the venture funds and is typically a first stop for entrepreneurs to help vet what business one is in and what might be attractive to particular investors.
  3. If you’re a startup or entrepreneur looking into next steps, reach out to the MEDC. They have tremendous resources, are well connected and have the ability to reach in and find the right match-making for investors and entrepreneurs.

If you’ve got a high-tech start-up idea you’d like to explore further and don’t know where to start, contact the Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s Entrepreneurship & Innovation Initiative at 888-522-0103 or visit https://www.michiganbusiness.org/entrepreneurship.

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