SmartZones provide distinct geographical locations where technology-based firms, entrepreneurs and researchers locate in close proximity to all of the community assets that assist in their endeavors. SmartZone technology clusters promote resource collaborations between universities, industry, research organizations, govermnent and other community institutions, growing technology-based businesses and jobs. New and emerging businesses in SmartZone technology clusters are primarily focused on commercializing ideas, patents and other opportunities surrounding corporate, university or private research institute R&D efforts.
Technology business acceleration and incubation
Michigan’s 17 SmartZones include technology business accelerators that provide the services identiﬁed below and, partnering with tech transfer offices, facilitate the commercialization of technology emerging from research in Michigan universities and private companies. Accelerators help to mine technology from universities and private enterprise, assist companies and entrepreneurs in building business structures around the technology, conduct product development and help companies secure necessary start up ﬁnancing. The SmartZones are also home to incubation facilities providing ofﬁce and wet lab space to technology companies.
Business accelerator services include, but are not limited to:
- Business development mentoring
- Networking events
- Business feasibility studies
- Business planning
- Entrepreneurial training
- Grant writing
- Incubator and wet lab space
- Management recruitment
- Market analysis
- Product development
- Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) assistance
- Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) assistance
- Technology assessments
- Technology mining
- Venture capital preparation and introductions
- Seventeen incubators/demonstration facilities in the following cities: Ann Arbor/Ypsilanti (two); Detroit (two); Grand Rapids (one); Houghton/Hancock (three); Kalamazoo (one); Lansing/East Lansing (two); Mount Pleasant/Midland (two); Muskegon (one); Rochester Hills (one); Sterling Heights (one); and Troy (one).
For further information, contact the MEDC customer contact center at 517.373.9808.