GRAND RAPIDS — Grand Ventures led an investment round in CRE Simple Inc., an Oakland, Calif.-based fintech firm focused on commercial real estate. The Grand Rapids venture capital firm led the round with Fin Venture Capital in San Francisco. Two Chicago-based firms, Darkknight Ventures and Sandalphon Capital, along with Durham, N.C.-based Duke Angel Network and other private investors
LANSING - A proposed settlement between Consumers Energy and independent power producers could lead to hundreds of megawatts of solar power being built within the next four years. On Thursday, the utility filed the proposed settlement with the Michigan Public Service Commission hoping to resolve a more than year-long dispute with solar developers looking to sell power to Consumers.
GRAND RAPIDS - A majority of retailers across Michigan report higher sales this spring and expect to sustain growth well into the summer. In a monthly survey released in late May by the Michigan Retailers Association, 56 percent of respondents reported a month-to-month increase in sales from March to April, while 29 percent had lower sales.
GRAND RAPIDS - Problems with Michigan’s infrastructure go beyond deteriorating roads and bridges. Michigan also ranks poorly — 42nd among the 50 states — in terms of digital connectivity, according to an annual report on entrepreneurship in the state. The scorecard issued annually by Michigan Celebrates Small Business and the Small Business Association of Michigan ranks the state
KALAMAZOO —Western Michigan University plans to launch an online program designed to improve the ability of I.T. professionals to protect against and mitigate hacks and data breaches. The eight-week, online certification program from WMU’s Haworth College of Business and College of Engineering and Applied Sciences starts in March and consists of four courses in high-demand cybersecurity specialties. WMU
BYRON CENTER — Rural wireless provider FreedomNet Wireless was acquired by an Indiana-based internet provider. The deal for Byron Center-based FreedomNet, which serves rural areas mostly south of Grand Rapids, near Fowlerville and in Southwest Michigan, expands La Porte, Ind.-based Surf Air Wireless LLC’s coverage area north into West Michigan, according to a statement. Surf Air Wireless now
KALAMAZOO - Innovative Cardiovascular Solutions LLC, the developer of a device to improve patient safety during a heart procedure, closed on $8 million in capital raised to support clinical trials and production. The Series C capital round supports further development of Kalamazoo-based Innovative Cardiovascular Solutions’ Emblok Embolic Protection System that’s designed to collect debris in the
GRAND RAPIDS - Grand Rapids Community College will receive $100,000 from heavy metal band Metallica to help launch a new welding program targeted at nontraditional students that will feature smaller class sizes, flexible scheduling and career preparation assistance. GRCC is one of 10 U.S. colleges nationwide to get funding from the band’s new foundation, according to a
DETROIT - The latest economic outlook from Business Leaders for Michigan shows far less optimism for the future among the state’s business executives. In the quarterly poll, only 31 percent of respondents said they held a positive view for the U.S. economy over the next six months, and just 22 percent believe Michigan’s economy will improve during
GRAND RAPIDS - Venture capital investors made fewer deals in Michigan during the third quarter than the same period a year earlier, although the amount invested more than tripled. VC firms invested $169.6 million in 26 deals in Michigan from July to September, according to a quarterly report from Pitchbook.com and the National Venture Capital