Thursday, December 12, 2002
Three Kalamazoo Firms Honored for Innovation
Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) officials recently honored several organizations and individuals for their successful commercialization endeavors at the Michigan Investment and Commercialization Success Celebration.Three Kalamazoo firms, AvTech, NephRx and TGap Ventures, were among the 17 companies and individuals honored.
Michael Jandernoa, member of the MEDC Executive Committee and Doug Rothwell, MEDC president and CEO, distributed awards for excellence in commercialization in the fields of advanced manufacturing, information technology, life sciences, venture capital and angel investing.“Kalamazoo continues to be fertile ground for entrepreneurial endeavors,” Rothwell said.“The valuable partnerships formed between the city, business community and Western Michigan University has put Kalamazoo in the spotlight as an excellent place to develop and commercialize important technologies.”
The award winners were chosen on the basis of innovation, success in the marketplace and their contributions to Michigan’s economy.
AvTech and NephRx were honored in the life sciences category.AvTech provides state-of-the-art analytical services to the prescription pharmaceutical industry.A Michigan Life Sciences Corridor funding recipient, AvTech has grown from its original four founding members to 45 employees, with plans to grow to 100 employees within the next two to three years.
NephRex has developed a product for the treatment of acute renal failure building on research from the University of Chicago.NephRex was drawn to Michigan because of its booming life sciences industry.The company has formed significant partnerships with Western Michigan University to further its research and commercialization efforts.
TGap Ventures was honored in the venture capital category.The new, $25 million venture capital firm will focus on early stage investments throughout the Midwest in telecommunications software, specialty manufacturing and other high-growth technology companies.TGap Ventures and its investors will continue to facilitate the recruitment of start-up firms to Michigan.
Thus far, 52 companies and individuals have received honors for their contributions to Michigan’s entrepreneurial success at Michigan Investment and Commercialization Celebrations.This is the third year the ceremony has been held.
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation, a partnership between the state and local communities, promotes smart economic growth by developing strategies and providing services to create and retain good jobs and a high quality of life.