wjr business beat

WJR Business Beat with Jeff Sloan: Ann Arbor Entrepreneurial Ecosystem (Episode 102)

On this morning’s WJR Business Beat, Jeff discusses the city of Ann Arbor as an entrepreneurial ecosystem hub within southeast Michigan.

As reported in DBusiness yesterday, Washtenaw County has seen a 31 percent increase in the number of venture-backed startups over the last six years, now with a total of 55 such active startups.

The study referenced in DBusiness by EntryPoint notes that Ann Arbor now claims 38 percent of the total venture-backed companies in the state of Michigan, and the 55 active venture-backed startups in the county have raised nearly $1 billion in venture capital funding.

Tune in to the WJR Business Beat for full details:

“The Ann Arbor startup ecosystem underscores the importance of creating a culture of entrepreneurship, supporting local startups with critical early-stage funding, and then having the successful founders of the startups that make it foster further growth of the ecosystem with their own investment dollars, matched by their leadership to fuel the local startup culture.”

– Jeff Sloan

Tune in to News/Talk 760 AM WJR weekday mornings at 7:11 a.m. for the WJR Business Beat. Listeners outside of the Detroit area can listen live HERE.

Are you an entrepreneur with a great story to share? If so, contact us at [email protected] and we’ll feature you on an upcoming segment of the WJR Business Beat!

WJR Business Beat Transcript

Good morning, Paul.

Our region has made great strides to bring more early-stage venture capital financing to our region, and the available the ability of that capital has led to a richer ecosystem of startups launching in our region. In one specific market headlining our region is Ann Arbor.

As reported in DBusiness yesterday, Washtenaw County has seen a 31 percent increase in the number of venture-backed startups over the last six years, now with a total of 55 such active startups. The DBusiness article sites a report by EntryPoint, titled 2020 Ann Arbor Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Report, which was just released.

EntryPoint is a nonprofit research institution that delivers research insights and implements programs to promote entrepreneurship across the Midwest. Emily Hines, founder and managing director of EntryPoint offered the following commentary on the fertile Ann Arbor market for supporting and growing successful startups.

Here’s what she had to say:

“Ann Arbor has a history of founders who have launched successful companies and continue to invest in the region. We’ve seen this with Arbor Networks, Duo Security and now Census, where founders develop groundbreaking solutions who hire talented people who then start their own ventures, creating a continuous cycle of innovation that only gets stronger as time goes on.”

And with respect to the importance of Ann Arbor to region’s startup ecosystem, get this: Ann Arbor now claims 38 percent of the total venture-backed companies in the state of Michigan, and the 55 active venture-backed startups in the county have raised nearly $1 billion in venture capital funding.

Fifty three percent of those companies are information technology companies, while 36 percent are life science or healthcare companies.

The Ann Arbor startup ecosystem underscores the importance of creating a culture of entrepreneurship, supporting local startups with critical early-stage funding, and then having the successful founders of the startups that make it foster further growth of the ecosystem with their own investment dollars, matched by their leadership to fuel the local startup culture.

I’m Jeff Sloan, founder and CEO of StartupNation.com, and that’s today’s Business Beat on the Great Voice of the Great Lakes, WJR.

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