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Grow Michigan

While Michigan is leading the automotive industry’s evolution from traditional manufacturing to next-generation mobility, the state is also home to a broad range of growing industry clusters including defense, health care, information technology, food processing, and more.  

From West to Southeast Michigan, the state offers fertile soil for economic development and entrepreneurship. Jackson is home to business incubator Lean Rocket Lab while Detroit features mobility accelerator Techstars Detroit. The Detroit region alone saw a 6% increase in employment since 2013 with a 4.4% unemployment rate in 2017. Investment from foreign-held companies continues to be important to Michigan’s economy. Since 2011, foreign-held companies have committed to 374 projects, investing nearly $12 billion and creating more than 59,500 jobs in Michigan.   

Business leaders from the state offered their thoughts on Michigan’s economic development and entrepreneurship trajectory.  

Patti Poppe  

President and CEO, Consumers Energy and CMS Energy; Chair, 2019 Mackinac Policy Conference 

Michigan is way more diverse than people know. We know that automotive and mobility is a key part of Michigan’s future. But when you look at automotive, manufacturing technology, agriculture, furniture, and pharmaceuticals…Michigan is extraordinarily diverse in our industries and they all have a common thread — we make stuff, we grow it. And I think that has lasting value.   

Dennis W. Archer Jr.  

CEO, Ignition Media Group; Founding Partner, Archer Corporate Services 

The state has a tremendous foundation, historically set by the automotive companies…while we do have a very mature auto industry and the other supporting industries surrounding it, it’s very important that the state be welcoming to a small business, young startup entrepreneurs. Welcoming means everything like tax structure, infrastructure, workforce, and education. 

Birgit Klohs  

President and CEO, The Right Place 

Economic development, at its heart, is about building prosperous economies so we can provide good paying jobs for the citizens of our state. If you grow the economy, good things tend to happen…Today, a person looking at a new job, looks at the community in which they live differently than they did 10 years ago. Today, quality of life plays a very important role, particularly around talent retention and attraction.