Plans Unveiled for Annual Michigan Growth Capital Symposium


ANN ARBOR — The Michigan Growth Capital Symposium (MGCS) today unveiled preliminary plans for the 2012 Symposium, the Midwest’s premier equity event. MGCS is the leading networking event for leaders in the venture capital investment world to connect with the entrepreneurs, startups and emerging growth companies that are actively searching for partners and funding. It is scheduled for May 15-16, 2012 at the Marriott Resort in Ypsilanti, Mich.

For more than three decades, the Michigan Growth Capital Symposium has served as a critical catalyst for innovation and a champion of entrepreneurial investment opportunities in the region.  The event attracts investors from across the country who want to connect with the “Best in Midwest” companies. This model has enabled over 300 companies to vie for funding in the past ten years alone and of those companies, over 70 percent have raised capital totaling $1.7 billion in investment dollars. Of those, 20 percent have gone on to realize successful exits.

“The Symposium has been about repairing the deficiency we had in access to finance in the Midwest and giving young companies the opportunity to present themselves to investors from around the country,” said David J. Brophy, MGCS founder and director and professor of finance at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business. “This program has resonated very well with anybody who is interested in building an entrepreneurial company and funding it.”

David Goldschmidt, co-founder of next-generation digital consumer incentives provider Buycentives, Inc. presented at the 30th anniversary event in 2011 and found the experience extremely valuable. The company, which is in the rapidly growing real-time marketing space, believes that the Symposium was a critical step in opening doors to interested high-quality investors from across the U.S.

“The pre-event logistics, pitch coaching and support during the entire event were all fantastic,” said Goldschmidt. “After our pitch to kick off the event, we had and scheduled discussions with several interested investors. It was an excellent exposure opportunity for Buycentives.”

In addition to company presentations, MGCS will feature keynote speakers and panel discussions led by some of the nation’s leading investors and entrepreneurs.  The sessions will provide insight on venture capital and investment trends and industry snapshots of emerging growth sectors such as life sciences and technology.

The Michigan Growth Capital Symposium is hosted by the Ross School of Business’ Zell Lurie Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies with support from the Michigan Venture Capital Association. Sponsors for the 2012 event are currently being enlisted, with sponsorships ranging from $1,000-$10,000.  Applications for companies to present will be available online beginning January 3. For more information or to become a sponsor, please visit

About the Michigan Growth Capital Symposium (MGCS)

MGCS is the original university-based venture fair.  This nationally attended two-day event provides an opportunity for financiers to connect with up-and-coming Midwest businesses and learn about emerging technologies.  The Symposium offers the opportunity to build relationships with an unparalleled business network of distinguished private equity industry leaders, leading university research faculty, and entrepreneurial business professionals.  Entering its 30th year, MGCS continues to draw top investors from coast to coast.  MGCS is presented by the Center for Venture Capital & Private Equity Finance at the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan with support from the Michigan Venture Capital Association and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.