Culture of innovation helping grow key industries statewide
As states continue to recover from the global pandemic, Michigan has a strategic plan to build a more resilient economy. The five-year plan focuses on industries that leverage Michigan’s culture of innovation, extensive R&D facilities, manufacturing expertise and high-tech talent paired with a Pure Michigan quality of life that makes the state the perfect place to live, work and play. The state’s access to talent, combined with a low cost of living that provides the opportunity to build a life, creates an important advantage to growing a business across key industry sectors in Michigan.
Professional and Corporate Services
Michigan’s job growth in the insurance industry continues to outpace the industry growth nationally, in part due to the eight regional and global insurance company headquarters that call Michigan home. Cities like Lansing are growing hubs for insurance companies, providing a deep talent pool and innovative approaches to growing the industry. Lansing is also home to PROTO Accelerator, a startup accelerator that provides physical product and insurtech startups with the capital, expertise and customer base to bring their ideas to market.
The industry is helping to drive economic recovery in the state post-COVID 19 with Acrisure – one of the world’s top 10 insurance brokers – establishing its world headquarters in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and Clearcover, Inc. – a venture-backed, Chicago-based insurance carrier – recently announcing plans to expand its presence to the city of Detroit.
The future of transportation continues to evolve with four mobility megatrends leading the way—autonomous technology, connected technology, shared services and vehicle electrification. To secure Michigan’s continued global leadership in mobility, Governor Gretchen Whitmer created the Office of Future Mobility and Electrification (OFME) to work across state government, academia and private industry to enhance Michigan’s mobility ecosystem and strengthen economic opportunity through safer, more equitable transportation options for Michigan residents.
The unique public/private partnership ecosystem that exists in Michigan continues to position it as the place for mobility startups to test, pilot and deploy innovative technologies in both real world environments and world-class testing facilities including the American Center for Mobility. Collaboration with the state helped May Mobility – a global developer of autonomous shuttles – to expand in Ann Arbor, MI with support from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. The project will generate a total private investment of $11.8 million and create 100, high-wage engineering and tech jobs.
As new technology emerges within manufacturing, mobility and facets across daily life, cybersecurity concerns continue to rise. Michigan is developing a robust cybersecurity community focused on connecting the interests of the cyber, automotive, defense and aerospace industries to find innovative solutions to prevent and respond to cyber threats while building a cyber ecosystem in which the public and private sectors work collaboratively. This includes hubs in cities throughout the state that operate as a physical extension of the Michigan Cyber Range, the nation’s largest unclassified cyber range. Hubs offer more than 40 industry-recognized certifications, exercises and workshops aimed at qualifying individuals for positions and contracts in cybersecurity fields.
Michigan also has a robust early stage, high-tech startup ecosystem enabling commercialization and new business creation within the state. The breadth and depth of the entrepreneurial support from the state, through MEDC’s Entrepreneurship & Innovation Initiative, positions Michigan to continue to be a leader in technology well into the future. Through the culture of innovation, Michigan has become home to four unicorn companies, including StockX, Rivian, OneStream Software, and Duo Security.
As one of the state’s hardest hit by COVID-19, Michigan manufacturers stepped up to establish the state’s Arsenal of Innovation to combat the spread of the coronavirus. With health systems around the world facing a shortage of personal protection equipment for frontline workers, manufacturers throughout the state retooled their shops to provide critical support to the ongoing response efforts.
In the northern reaches of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, Calumet Electronics began working around the clock producing circuit boards for ventilators. Further south, Petoskey Plastics started producing isolation gowns for hospitals.
The state is also doubling down on its manufacturing heritage, positioning itself as a leader in Industry 4.0 initiatives with partners like Automation Alley, a nonprofit manufacturing and technology business association and Michigan’s Industry 4.0 knowledge center.
Medical Device Technology
Michigan has a rich history of discovery and impact within the medical devices industry. As home to household industry names like Pfizer and Stryker, the state is increasingly competitive throughout the nation for developing, testing and deploying new medical device technologies.
Michigan is home to more than 75 VCs in the states with key funders in medical devices and the state’s medical device sector has grown steadily over the last two years, making Michigan the 10th largest state in medical device manufacturing in the U.S. with 383 medical device firms.
In spite of these unprecedented times, Michigan was recognized this year for its tech and manufacturing talent, cybersecurity leadership and manufacturing strength, continuing to be a top choice for businesses in the Midwest.
Visit michiganbusiness.org/pure-opportunity to learn more about doing business in the state. And, while you’re there you can discover the many reasons to live, work and enjoy Michigan.