COVID-19 Update: Ann Arbor’s Home Point Capital Launches IPO, Oakland County Businesses to Share $1.7M In State Grants, and More

Here is a roundup of the latest news concerning the COVID-19 pandemic in addition to announcements from local, state, and federal governments, as well as international channels. To share a business or nonprofit story, please send us a message.
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map of Michigan coronavirus cases
Courtesy of Bridge, as of Jan. 23

Here is a roundup of the latest news concerning the COVID-19 pandemic in addition to announcements from local, state, and federal governments, as well as international channels. To share a business or nonprofit story, please send us a message.

Ann Arbor’s Home Point Capital Launches IPO
Ann Arbor-based Home Point Capital Inc., the parent entity of the Homepoint mortgage company, has commenced an initial public offering of 12.5 million shares of its common stock to be sold by certain of its stockholders, at an anticipated IPO offering price between $19 and $21 per share.

The offering is subject to market conditions, and there can be no assurance as to whether or when the offering may be completed, or as to the actual size or terms of the offering, according to the company.

Home Point Capital is not selling any shares in the offering. The selling stockholders expect to grant the underwriters a 30-day option to purchase an aggregate of 1.875 million shares of Home Point Capital’s common stock. Home Point Capital has applied to list its common stock on the NASDAQ Global Select Market under the ticker symbol HMPT.

Home Point Capital will not receive any net proceeds from the sale of its common stock by the selling stockholders, including from any exercise by the underwriters of their option to purchase additional shares of the common stock from the selling stockholders.

Goldman Sachs & Co., Wells Fargo Securities, Morgan Stanley, and UBS Investment Bank are acting as lead book-running managers for the proposed offering. Credit Suisse, J.P. Morgan, and BofA Securities also are acting as bookrunning managers for the proposed offering. JMP Securities, Piper Sandler & Co., R. Seelaus & Co., SPC Capital Markets, Wedbush Securities, and Zelman Partners are acting as co-managers for the proposed offering.

Oakland County Businesses to Share $1.7M In State Grants
Seventy-four Oakland County businesses will share $1.77 million in Going PRO Talent Fund grants awarded this week by the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity.

Oakland County employers — with the support of Oakland County Michigan Works! — were awarded the funds to hire and train 313 new employees, expand the skills of 1,459 existing workers, and create 12 new registered apprenticeships during the year.

“This funding is critical to companies rebounding from the pandemic and preparing their workforces for tomorrow,” says David Coulter, Oakland County executive. “I’m pleased so many of our local businesses that applied for funding were awarded grants this year, providing a real boost as they move forward during the recovery.”

A total of $39 million in Going PRO Talent Fund grants were awarded across the state this year, benefiting 30,000 workers at more than 850 businesses. Since its inception in 2014, the program has benefited more than 3,000 businesses and 94,000 workers. The program was suspended in 2020 due to budget concerns.

Oakland County employers have received more than $7.5 million in grants since the program began.

“Despite the unique challenges facing area companies, we had strong interest in the program across the county and the state,” says Jennifer Llewellyn, workforce development manager for Oakland County. “Local employers and teams from Oakland County Michigan Works! offices collaborated on preparing the successful application packages in a very short timeframe.”

According to the state, there will be 545,000 professional trades job openings through 2026.

“The demand for skilled workers to fill these positions will be huge over the next several years,” Llewellyn says. “The Going PRO Talent Fund grants play a key role in providing the training needed to fuel our talent pipeline and keep this sector of our economy strong.”

Area companies receiving grants include, among others:  Applied Manufacturing Technologies, Barron Industries, Becker Orthopedic Appliances Co., Coventry Industries, Henry Ford Medical Group, Marada Industries, MPI, Orion Measurement Solutions, Parry Precision: Madison Heights, Spalding DeDecker Associates, Superior Materials, Titan Metallurgy, Ultra-Grip International, Welding Technology Corp., and Williams International.

Oakland County Michigan Works! operates service centers in Novi, Oak Park, Pontiac, Southfield, Troy, and Waterford. Combined, they assist more than 105,000 job seekers annually. Services include career coaching, interviewing and job search workshops, placement assistance, training courses and job trend information.

Service centers also assist more than 3,000 employers seeking assistance with talent recruitment, apprenticeship programs, job fairs, candidate pre-screening, hiring and training support, layoff support, and labor market data.

Service center staffs remain available by virtual appointment to work one-on-one with job seekers to build their resumes, prepare for job interviews, and help address other needs. For more information, visit here.

GAN Announces Multiple Client Launches in Michigan
California-based internet gambling service GAN Limited has started providing services to Michigan’s internet gambling market with three related client launches: Churchill Downs, Wynn Resorts, and FanDuel Group.

GAN is powering three of the nine services approved last week by the Michigan Gaming Control Board. According to Regulus Partners and Macquarie Research, the state of Michigan is expected to generate $439 million in Gross Operator Revenue during the balance of 2021, increasing to $724 million in 2022 and $969 million in 2023.

Churchill Downs launched its online Sportsbook and iGaming via simultaneous launch of desktop web, mobile web, Apple iOS Native App, and Android App under the operation of its nationwide racing and wagering brand TwinSpires. Michigan is the first of several states to launch TwinSpires Casino and Sports on GAN’s platform.

Wynn Resorts launched its WynnBET branded internet sportsbook and internet casino leveraging GAN’s Platform, via desktop web, mobile web and native Apple iOS, and Android apps in association with the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians, which operates five casinos under the ‘Kewadin’ brand throughout northern Michigan.

FanDuel Group launched GAN’s SuperRGS aggregating a portfolio of U.S. relevant online casino gaming content assembled from third-party providers IGT, Scientific Games, NET Entertainment, and Everi. The SuperRGS is now available to third-party Michigan operators of internet casino gaming, subject to commercial agreements, as a single technical integration representing hundreds of U.S. relevant online casino games.

“The long-awaited Michigan market commencement is upon us,” says Dermot Smurfit, president and CEO of GAN “Ten million residents of Michigan will finally be enabled to bet on sports and play casino games online, ushering into existence the next large intrastate market for internet gambling here in the United States.”

LTU’s Centrepolis Accelerator Announces Winners of Inaugural Client Awards
The Centrepolis Accelerator, the business accelerator established by Lawrence Technological University and the city of Southfield, has named the winners of its inaugural Client Awards, recognizing some of Michigan’s most promising manufacturing innovations.

Winners included:

  • MaxPro Fitness, Rochester, for a portable full-body cable-based exercise system as best hardware product.
  • Flash Steelworks, Washington Township, for a novel process of heat treating to create stronger and more ductile steel as best manufacturing technology.
  • Rhombus Energy Solutions, San Diego, Calif., for advanced power electronics products for electrical energy conversion and control as best “cleantech” company.
  • Tygrus, Troy, for non-toxic, non-corrosive anti-microbial chemical products as best COVID-19 response product.
  • Qualified 3D, Southfield, for developing form-fitting face masks as best COVID-19 business pivot.

In addition, a Lifetime Hardware Achievement Award was presented to David Bolognino, a Lawrence Tech alumnus who serves as an advisor to the Centrepolis Accelerator, supporting product design, engineering.

Explore 1920s Detroit in New Exhibit at Detroit Historical Museum
Visitors to the Detroit Historical Museum will be able to get a glimpse of the city during the 1920s in a new exhibit titled “Boom Town: Detroit in the 1920s,” through 2023.

Located on the museum’s lower level, Boom Town tells the decade’s stories through 20 personal histories of real residents of the era, representing different ages, backgrounds, and occupations, while evoking storied locations around the city.

Some of the residents have famous names, like sculptor Corrado Parducci, physician and civil rights champion Ossian Sweet, theater founder Jesse Bonstelle, and mayor and U.S. Senator James J. Couzens. Others are less-known, namely young adult bootlegger Julia Brunelle, Cotton Pickers musician William McKinney, pioneering restauranteur George Poy, and social activist Lillian Johnson among other professionals, religious leaders, social reformers, artists, and everyday community members.

The exhibit features rarely seen artifacts from the Detroit Historical Society’s collection help to bring their stories — and the city of 100 years ago — to life.

DIA’s Inside|Out Program Returns with Installations in 26 Communities
The Detroit Institute of Arts has announced the 26 metro Detroit communities participating in the 2021 edition of Inside|Out, which brings high-quality reproductions of masterpieces from the DIA’s collection to outdoor venues from May through October.

In Wayne County, DIA installations will be in Huron Township, ​Romulus​, Westland, Garden City​, NW Goldberg Cares, Lake Erie Metropark in Brownstown, Redford Township, Rosedale Park, and Wayne County Community College District.

Chesterfield​ Township, Clinton Township, ​Eastpointe, Stoney Creek Metropark in Shelby Township, Macomb Community College​, Memphis​, and Romeo will host DIA installations in Macomb County.

In Oakland County, Auburn Hills, Beverly Hills, ​Ferndale, Kensington Metropark in Milford​, Paint Creek Trailway, Polly Ann Trailway​, Rochester Hills, Waterford, ​Oakland Community College​, and Oakland County Parks will host CIA artwork.

Exact locations within each community are still being determined and when finalized will be featured on interactive maps posted on the DIA’s website.

Over the past 11 years, the museum has partnered with more than 100 communities and engaged tens of thousands of residents.

“The Inside|Out program allows us a unique way to engage with tri-county residents by bringing art from the DIA into the communities in which they live,” says Salvador Salort-Pons, director of the DIA. “This year providing a way to bring communities together in a safe, outdoor fashion outside of the museum walls has a whole new meaning.”

Each community will display approximately four to 10 reproductions, clustered within walking or biking distance.

The DIA encourages each community to plan activities centered on its Inside|Out works; events will be planned closer to installation dates. Previous activities have included bike and walking tours, talks at libraries and community centers, festivals, and more.

Programs are made possible with support from residents of Macomb, Oakland, and Wayne counties.

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