On this episode of Fund Facts—a video series focused on venture capitalists, angel investors and other funders critical to Michigan’s entrepreneurial ecosystem—we connect with Charlie Moret, President and CEO of Invest Michigan.
Invest Michigan was founded six years ago with funding from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. Since 2014, Invest Michigan has been one of Michigan’s most active technology investors, having invested in over 53 companies and completed more than 120 investments.
“The MEDC has been incredibly supportive of early-stage tech funding over the years, said Moret. “By creating funds like Invest Michigan and others, they’ve made it possible to provide early-stage capital across Michigan and have a tremendous track record of companies that have been invested in because of their support.”
In this video, Charlie sits down with the MEDC to discuss what kind of companies Invest Michigan funds and how to get the attention of an investor, among other key takeaways. Some of these include:
- Invest Michigan supports early-stage companies that are bringing technological innovation to Michigan as well as underserved entrepreneurs such as women and people of color, which make up half of the organization’s current investments. Some of these companies include:
- FifthEye—An innovative health care platform that goes beyond vital signs to help warn clinicians of patient deterioration. Led by three-time repeat entrepreneur Jen Baird, FifthEye was spun out of the University of Michigan and is currently in the commercialization stage.
- ONL Therapeutics—Currently, the first and only company focused on preventing FAS-mediated death of retinal cells. Its world-class team is pioneering a new approach using a breakthrough technology that preserves sight and halts vision loss associated with Retinal Disease.
- Ad Adapted—Patented technology that offers consumers a simple way to add promoted products to their digital grocery lists, in turn helping businesses reach consumers and drive sales. With more than 110 million shoppers in the United States using a mobile grocery list app, Ad Adapted’s software is in high demand with major consumer marketing companies.
- To attract the attention of investors, Charlie said it’s not enough to only focus on your technology. The first step of a successful company is to build a strong team that has the experience needed to advance your technology and reach commercialization.
- Charlie is bullish on entrepreneurship in Michigan because it has a unique ecosystem that is intentionally designed to support technology and innovation. The MEDC, alongside a robust investor community composed of angel investors, institutional investors and venture capitalists, all assist entrepreneurs and early-stage companies in moving their technologies forward.
If you have a high-tech startup 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 michiganbusiness.org/entrepreneurship.
To contact a business development specialist, click here or call 1.888.522.0103.