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TechTown Detroit


Detroit, MI

Build to Scale Program

Capital Challenge

Project Name

Unlocking Angel Capital and Diversifying Angel Investing in Michigan and the Great Lakes Region

Award Amount

Federal Share

Local Match



TechTown Detroit, in partnership with the Angel Capital Association (ACA), VentureWell, and Ann Arbor SPARK (AAS), will recruit and train 200 high-net-worth individuals from Michigan and throughout the Great Lakes region who are underrepresented in the angel investor community and activate their potential as investors. Unlocking more risk capital and creating a more robust innovation ecosystem requires the expansion of the pool of angel investors to include more people who intrinsically understand the experiences of founders of color and women founders. All participants will complete the ACA’s Angel University Angel Investing Basics Program and will be encouraged to continue deepening their engagement, network, and experience in angel investing. At least half of trainees are expected to participate in follow-on activities, including attending local angel group meetings. Twenty trainees will get grant-subsidized participation in VentureWell’s ASPIRE accelerator, where they will shadow an investor-in-residence and mentor a startup. Sixty participants will continue formal training in the ACA Angel University - Angel Investing Deep Dive. Sixty trainees will attend the Michigan Angel Summit. In addition, all will be connected to their local angel groups, encouraged to join ACA as a member, and attend the ACA Annual Summit.

In three years, newly trained angel investors resulting from this project will contribute actively to shaping the deal flow and due diligence of the angel investment community in the Great Lakes region and participate in making 50 investments in rounds totaling $34.7 million in early-stage capital.

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Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship (OIE)

Build To Scale (B2S)
formerly Regional Innovation Strategies Program (RIS)

SPRINT Challenge

STEM Talent Challenge

Accelerate R2 Network Challenge

National Advisory Council on Innovation & Entrepreneurship (NACIE)

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