Four Startups Receive Michigan Microloan Fund Awards

The Michigan Microloan Fund Program announced last week that it has awarded a combined $156,000 in funding to four Michigan startups. The early-stage companies received the microloans to support their commercialization efforts.

“The microloans are important because they give the companies an opportunity to grow and move into the entrepreneurial ecosystem,” says Joe Locavalli, who manages the microloan program for Ann Arbor SPARK. “The funds are provided by the 21st Century Jobs Fund; being exposed to the Michigan Economic Development Corporation is a great advantage because it allows the companies to meet and greet other organizations.”

The companies that received microloan support are:

Crowdjuice: The Ann Arbor-based company has developed Web-based and mobile software that allows attendees of professional events to find each other and network online.

Sentry Medical Technologies: Located in Ann Arbor, Sentry Medical Technologies is commercializing a device to monitor patient behavior and log the data collected.

Supported Intelligence: This East Lansing-based startup has developed what it calls a Rapid Recursive Toolbox, which provides advanced analytics for investment modeling, valuation, financial modeling, risk assessment, and decision optimization.

Zon Labs: Zon Labs, based in East Lansing, has created a multiplayer, online video game that helps people learn Chinese language and culture.

The Michigan Microloan Fund Program is comprised of three distinct microloan funds: The Eastern Washtenaw Microloan Fund, the Michigan Pre-Seed Capital Fund, and the City of Ann Arbor through funding from the Ann Arbor/Ypsilanti Local LDFA. The Michigan Microloan Fund Program loans range from $10,000 to $50,000 and are awarded quarterly.  To qualify, companies must be a small business, have ownership or license to innovative technology, and be privately held. To date, the Michigan Microloan Fund Program has loaned more than $3.2 million.

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