MI Roundup: Michipreneur, Fanzoo, Start Garden, Beringea, iVantage

Here’s a look at recent news from around Michigan’s innovation community:

—The fine folks at Michipreneur have put together an online, statewide startup directory. Searchable by keyword, industry, or city, the directory has more than 100 companies listed and is growing by the day. Want to add your startup to the directory? Click here to submit an entry.

Start Garden, the Grand Rapids-based venture capital fund that invests in more than 100 ideas per year in small increments, has selected Tizzy to receive a $5,000 investment. Tizzy is a social polling app that allows users to post two photos side-by-side to solve questions, such as which dress a friend should choose for prom. Jessica Granger, founder of Tizzy, said in a press release that she’ll use the funding to fix bugs and market the app after it launches in October.

Beringea, the private equity firm with offices in Farmington Hills and London, has exited portfolio company Altacor, a specialty ophthalmology company. Altacor has been acquired by Esperante, a Netherlands-based life science investment company, for an undisclosed amount. Beringea’s first investment in Altacor was in 2007.

Fanzoo Technology in Ann Arbor is hosting monthly “Learn Something” workshops on the fourth Wednesday of each month to encourage the continued development of programming skills. Learn Something is open to programmers of all backgrounds and skill levels. Each workshop is focused on a specific goal, language, or project to tackle as a team or in pairs while Fanzoo Technology staff members guide the process. If you’re interested in attending a workshop, click here.

iVantage, the fast-growing Brighton-based IT staffing and recruiting firm, has been named one of metropolitan Detroit’s “best and brightest companies to work for” and was cited for excellence in the areas of diversity and inclusion, employee recognition, and work-life balance. The designation comes on the heels of iVantage landing on the Inc. 5000 list for the first time. The company also recently expanded its headquarters to a new 4,500-square-foot facility and is on track to reach a record $10 million in revenues this year.

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