Grand Angels, a Grand Rapids-based investor group, has joined with a consortium of metro Detroit investors to form Woodward Angels to identify and deploy early-stage capital to tech and digitally scaling businesses in Detroit.
“We realized that early-stage investment was one of the largest obstacles facing companies looking to scale and succeed in Detroit,” says Lauren Hoffman, director of Woodward Angels. “This group serves to fill in that gap by connecting startups with local capital and at the same time helping them access mentorship, expertise, and key relationships that come with a strong network of early local investors, many of whom are successful operators of growing businesses themselves.”
The angel investors are leaders from a diverse pool of local businesses as well as those who no longer reside in Detroit but maintain a connection or affinity.
“We have already experienced success investing in Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo through Grand Angels and Ka-Zoo Angels, and now Woodward Angels’ investments in Detroit helps to further our mission of a connected Michigan tech ecosystem,” says Tim Parker, president of Grand Angels and co-founder of Michigan Capital Network.
“As Detroit continues to evolve into a leading technology hub, it is important that the local startup ecosystem has all of the elements necessary to remain competitive and increase the likelihood of success for entrepreneurs who locate to the city,” says Dan Gilbert, founder and chairman of Quicken Loans and a founding member of Woodward Angels.