DeNovo Sciences Wins Accelerate Michigan’s $500K Grand Prize

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NextGen Metabolomics, which is developing new technology to automate the measurement of metabolites from samples such as cells, biopsies, urine, or blood.

Out of the 53 finalists, 22 companies were in the biotech sector, something that Stephen Rapundalo, president and CEO of MichBio, said shouldn’t be a surprise.

“We’ve had some very successful exits in the past few years, and success tends to breed success,” Rapundalo said. “The coastal VCs have woken up to the fact that there are really good opportunities in Michigan that offer a great return on investment. It’s a bargain.”

Rapundalo says that Michigan’s startups aren’t immune to the current trend that has investors shying away from biotech firms, but, in general, he feels “pretty upbeat” about the prospects for the industry’s growth.

“People are almost bullish about it,” Rapundalo says. “If anything, we don’t toot our own horn enough. This is the third year in a row that the bio sector was very well represented [at Accelerate Michigan]. I think that speaks volumes about what the industry means to the state of Michigan.”

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