MI Entrepreneurial Support Systems: We Have It All Going On Here!

Michigan’s economy was close to being decimated from a series of devastating events, hitting our manufacturing foundation well below the belt. We have seen situations similar to this before and have risen to the challenge. We are a unique sort in Michigan; we are proud, hardworking people whose determination and grit knows no end other than success. Included in this group are entrepreneurs, comprised of bright, forward thinking, motivated individuals working passionately towards reaching their varying goals and an opportunity to show the world the ingenuity they are able to provide, aiding in moving Michigan’s economy forward.

In Michigan, entrepreneurs are fortunate to have a strong support network and resources intended to aid in their success and, in turn, the success of Michigan as a whole. One of the many options available is Michigan SmartZones. The staff of the SmartZones work diligently in an effort provide almost limitless educational opportunities for the entrepreneur, from gatherings intended to maximize the capabilities of social media, to expert legal and  financial consultations, to trade missions abroad and almost everything in between. Experienced business people are in place willingly providing expertise and mentoring, often volunteering their time. Commercialization and capital experts are employed to aid in simplifying what can be a complex network of their respective specializations.

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DARPA: R&D of the Future, Today

By administering the Michigan Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Matching Funds Program* (MD.MFP), Mac-OU INC is currently increasing the amount of federally-sponsored (DARPA) research and development (R&D) funding to the State of Michigan, specifically for the defense industry. This program hosts DARPA education and trainings; assists Michigan academic institutions partnering with businesses to compete in DARPA challenges, which push researchers to advance technologies and bridge the gap between fundamental discoveries and military use; and provides matching funds for DARPA-funded Michigan proposals up to 25 percent of the awarded federal amount, or $50,000, whichever is less.

The thrill of Mac-OU INC administering this program to provide more R&D funding to Michigan is a given. However, with no prior experience with DARPA, my excitement for this agency truly stemmed from the results of all the past completed DARPA projects.

Through DARPA, we have been able to enjoy the internet, microwaves, cloud computing and speech recognition (any other Siri lovers out there?). This is not even mentioning all of the defense applications such as body armor, unmanned aerial and undersea vehicles, the M-16 assault rifle and global positioning systems.

Let’s check out some of our more recent favorites:


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