Granholm: 21st Century Investment Fund Helping to Fuel Michigan's Diversification Efforts

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Investments of venture capital funds

LANSING - Governor Jennifer M. Granholm and Michigan Economic Development Corporation President and CEO Greg Main today announced Michigan Strategic Fund (MSF) board approval of investments in three venture capital funds and one mezzanine fund through the Michigan 21st Century Investment Fund totaling up to $35.5 million.

“The 21st Century Investment Fund is an important component of our aggressive plan to diversify Michigan’s economy,” Granholm said. “These investments will help provide capital to enable Michigan companies to grow and create new jobs.”

Today’s action authorizes up to $5 million for Arsenal Venture Partners, an early stage venture capital firm focused on the convergence of the defense and commercial markets. The firm will establish an office in Michigan.

Up to $10 million was authorized for Early Stage Partners L.P., a provider of early stage venture capital to companies in the Midwest. The firm plans to fund the commercialization and development of research taking place in educational, scientific and medical institutions. The firm will open an office in Ann Arbor.

An investment of up to $10 million was authorized for Triathlon Medical Ventures, a Midwest-based venture capital firm with a focus on life sciences companies. The firm has hired a Michigan-based full-time partner.

Up to $14.5 million was authorized for Detroit-based Peninsula Capital Partners, Michigan’s largest mezzanine fund manager. The firm targets non-conventional transactions such as growth capital, strategic acquisitions, leveraged dividends, shareholder buybacks and other special situations.  

“Building and sustaining the strong capital markets is critical for businesses at all stages of development to grow and prosper,” said Main, who is also chair of the MSF board. “We are executing an aggressive strategy to do just that here in Michigan.”

The 21st Century Investment Fund is a major component of Governor Granholm’s 21st Century Jobs Fund, a $2-billion, 10-year initiative to diversify the state’s economy and grow high-tech companies and jobs. Commitments through the fund can only be invested in companies that have a strong Michigan presence. The program is focused on generating strong returns while creating and retaining Michigan jobs. The MSF has authoriIzed up to $109 million of investments in venture capital, mezzanine, and private equity funds, as well as co-investments in individual companies alongside these funds through the 21st Century Investment Fund.

“We believe that these four managers are a strong addition to the Michigan 21st Century Investment Fund,” said Kelly Williams, a managing director and co-head of Credit Suisse’s Customized Fund Investment Group, the Michigan 21st CIF fund manager. “Each of the four managers has taken major steps to show that they are committed to investing capital in Michigan based companies.  We are extremely happy with the portfolio of fund managers that has been built over the past three years for the Michigan 21st Century Investment Fund.”

The 21st Century Investment Fund seeks to strengthen and diversify Michigan’s economic base by fostering the creation and growth of new jobs, new businesses, and new industries within the state through investments in private equity, venture capital mezzanine funds and co-investments in individual companies alongside these funds. The Michigan Strategic Fund contracts with Credit Suisse to develop and administer investment programs under the Michigan 21st Century Investment Fund. More information is available at

About Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation is the state’s marketing arm and lead advocate for business development, job awareness and community development with the focus on growing Michigan’s economy. For more information on the MEDC and our initiatives, visit For Pure Michigan® tourism information, your trip begins at Join the conversation on: Facebook Instagram LinkedIn, and Twitter.