Kowall resolution honors importance of entrepreneurs


LANSING, Mich. — The state Senate on Wednesday adopted a resolution sponsored by Majority Floor Leader Mike Kowall recognizing the importance of entrepreneurs to Michigan’s economy.

Senate Resolution 155 recognizes April 22 – 28, 2018 as Michigan Venture Capital and Angel Investment Week. The resolution coincides with the release of the 2018 Michigan Venture Capital Association Research Report.

“Michigan’s 29 venture capital firms and 11 angel investor groups fund our most innovative entrepreneurs and work closely with them to transform breakthrough ideas into new companies and industries that drive job creation and economic growth in the state,” said Kowall, R-White Lake. “We should do all we can to make Michigan the state where companies come to grow.”

Kowall said Michigan investors are trailblazers who are vital to building Michigan’s entrepreneurial community.

“Local investors are often the first to identify innovative companies emerging in the state and have the networks necessary to support their growth and to help them stay in Michigan rather than relocate,” Kowall said.

SR 155 notes there are 134 startups in the state, and every $1 invested in a Michigan startup by a Michigan-based venture capital firm attracts $138 million of investment from outside the state.

Kowall said approximately $627 million of additional venture capital will be required in the next two years to adequately fund the growth of Michigan’s 134 venture-backed startups. However, only $403 million of venture capital is available for existing portfolio companies backed by Michigan venture capitalists, highlighting a funding gap that is beginning to affect Michigan startups.

To support the demand for capital from high-tech, high-growth companies launching in Michigan, local venture firms are targeting to raise $657 million in 2018.