Michigan: Hotbed for Startups

STRT Fund VC News

Michigan has a history of being on the leading edge of industry change dating back from the beginnings of the auto industry in1886 when Ransom E. Olds received a patent for the first gasoline-run car. And, in last year’s CES saw Michigan companies and MICHauto investors breaking new ground in the vehicle technology and mobility spaces, demonstrating a variety of products that will help move the world in the coming decades.

There is a strong sense of the midwestern can do spirit, which spills over into being a hub for entrepreneurs and great opportunity for startups.

According to MichiganBusiness.org Michigan is ranked as the fourth most affordable state in the country, roughly 50% cheaper than states along the west coast. Inventors are able to stretch their capital and investors can get make more use of their capital investments.

Michigan’s startups are gaining speed leading the country in line with amazing new innovations that are changing the world.

Michiganrise.com, launched in August 2020, was born due to the fact there is a strong need for pre-seed capital. Michigan Rise Pre-Seed Fund III invests in Michigan tech startups to help commercialize innovative technologies. partnering with Michigan’s best and brightest tech entrepreneurs and further economic development in the Mitten State through support from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and Michigan State University Foundation.

The state has invested $6.5 million in the fund which has made a $3.7 million investment into Michigan startups. According to Michigan Rise Director, Prem Bodagala, “There is a dire need in the state to keep those fires burning for these high-tech, high-growth companies to come out of Michigan.”  

The opportunity for investment in founder’s rounds are all around Michigan and now is the time to jump in!  In launching the STRT Fund, it was important for us as an emerging VC to further the startup ecosystem and innovation hubs by creating relationships with economic development funds like Rise and others across the country. 

It is this commitment to founders, innovators and the investors that support them that demonstrates our belief in the midwestern (and American) can do spirit, that is strong and prospering.

Chris Schnepf, Founder and Partner, STRT Fund