Momentum Builds as Michigan Growth Capital Symposium Announces Track Sessions and Panel Discussions

Shannon Beeman
March 30, 2016

Organizers of the Michigan Growth Capital Symposium (MGCS) unveiled initial program details for the 35th annual event, which will be held May 17 and 18 at the Marriott Resort in Ann Arbor/Ypsilanti. This year’s event will feature panel discussions led by respected national investors and business strategists that explore pressing issues facing today’s entrepreneurs and investors. A new Tech Transfer ‘Alley’ will also provide a larger platform for Midwest universities to spotlight Tech Transfer offices and their emerging company spin-outs.

Michigan Growth Capital Symposium Zell Lurie Institute University of MichiganThe MGCS is the premier Midwest networking event and the only university-based venture fair of its kind that connects national leaders in venture capital with emerging growth companies actively searching for partners and funding. Year after year, it has successfully facilitated valuable relationships that help move companies forward. At its founding in 1979, upon the heels of the newly launched National Venture Capital Association, the MGCS set out to bring institutional investment interest to Midwest companies and continues to play a critical role in fostering growth in the region’s startup community.

Featured panels at MGCS 2016 include:

  • The Challenges of Medical Software Startups: Led by Jonathan Murray from Draper Triangle Ventures, this session will explore the opportunities and challenges for selling and integrating healthcare system productivity enhancement technology into hospital and legacy systems.
  • Healthcare 2.0 Impact and Opportunities: How do the Changes Related to Healthcare Reform Impact Your Investment Strategy?: Led by Tom Shehab, MD from Arboretum Ventures, this panel of seasoned healthcare venture capital investors will discuss how healthcare reform impacts their investing strategy and how the companies they invest in respond to the high level of uncertainty in the industry.
  • The Corporate Venture Capitalist Role and Goal in Healthcare Innovation: Led by Jim Adox from Venture Investors, this session will discuss how corporate VCs and business development executives are playing a bigger role in healthcare innovation, and what this means for venture-backed companies.
  • Tech Transfer Panel: Presented by Osage Venture Partners and University of Michigan Tech Transfer, this panel will gather panelists who have licensed university technologies for a discussion of investing in the tech space with a focus on startups coming out of universities.

In addition to informative panel discussions, 30-35 presenting companies, and keynote speakers, this year’s MGCS will feature an expanded focus on innovations and companies emerging from the Midwest area’s university Tech Transfer offices.  With its new Tech Transfer Alley, MGCS has carved out a unique and distinct space to showcase universities’ commitment to technology innovation, business formation and commercialization.  Complementing Tech Transfer Alley will be a Tech Transfer Pitch Track, representing five to seven university Tech Transfer programs that will spotlight three to five companies emerging from their systems.

MGCS organizers are in the process of reviewing applications submitted by emerging and high growth companies from across the Midwest to present at this year’s 35th event.  Selected companies will be publicly announced in early May.

Sponsorships Still Available

The 35th annual Michigan Growth Capital Symposium is presented by the University of Michigan’s Zell Lurie Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies and Center for Venture Capital & Private Equity Finance at the Ross School of Business, with support from the Michigan Venture Capital Association. Sponsorship opportunities are available at various levels, ranging from $1,000 to $10,000. For more information, please contact Mary Nickson at (734) 615-4424 or visit the website at

About the Michigan Growth Capital Symposium (MGCS)

MGCS is the original university-based venture fair, which was first held in 1979. This nationally attended two-day event provides an opportunity for investors to connect with up-and-coming Midwest businesses and learn about emerging technologies. The Symposium offers the opportunity to build relationships with an unparalleled business network of distinguished private equity industry leaders, leading university research faculty, and entrepreneurial business professionals. MGCS is presented by the Center for Venture Capital & Private Equity Finance at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business with support from the Michigan Venture Capital Association.