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DETROIT NATIVE SUN
DETROIT NATIVE SUN
PRNewswire/ -- Renaissance Venture Capital has helped attract $2.3 billion in investments for 78 Michigan companies through its portfolio and capital attraction activities.
     Renaissance Venture Capital (RVC) announced that the 55 Michigan companies in its portfolio have raised at total of $2.17 billion to date, or more than $13 for every dollar invested by Renaissance. This is more than 50% higher than the rate of local investment targeted by Renaissance when it was formed in 2008.
  In addition, RVC has worked to raise capital from unaffiliated venture funds around the country into Michigan, tracking an additional $145 million in investment in 23 Michigan companies. Many of these introductions were made at UnDemo Day®, RVC's signature semi-annual capital attraction event. 
    "The stats from our UnDemo Day® activity are especially rewarding because we are bringing in new money to the state's most innovative companies," says Chris Rizik, CEO and fund manager at Renaissance. "With this money comes local economic growth and jobs for the Great Lakes State. People are noticing the power of Michigan."
     UnDemo Day® is designed to attract capital from all over the nation into Michigan startups. The gathering brings together hundreds of venture capitalists and connects them with 50-60 of the most promising Michigan startups. At each UnDemo Day®, Renaissance arranges more than 500 one-on-one meetings between venture capitalists and Michigan startups. Last year alone, 15 local startups received venture funding from UnDemo Day® introductions. 
  Earlier this month, Genomenon Inc. announced a $20 million Series B funding from Beringea, an introduction made through the UnDemo Day® process.
  "As an entrepreneur, I appreciate all the work Renaissance Venture Capital puts into the introductions they make," said Mike Klein, CEO of Genomenon, Inc. "The connection they made for us truly made a difference in our future. While we had several term sheets on the table, the Midwest connection at UnDemo Day® with Beringea put them in the top position to lead our deal."
  On April 27, Renaissance will initiate its first DEI UnDemo Day®, designed exclusively to attract national venture capital to diverse founders. The virtual event will highlight companies from the Midwest and Central U.S. led by women, people of color, and other diverse communities. More than 125 diverse startups have applied to participate.
  The traditional in-person UnDemo Day® will be held in Fall of 2022 at Ford Field in Detroit.
  Renaissance invests in top-tier venture capital funds around the county, bringing them into Michigan's vibrant startup ecosystem. It then connects those funds and their startups with major organizations looking for innovation. Startup companies are the lifeblood of a growing economy, and Renaissance uses its unique role to help startups connect with potential investors and major customers.
  According to a recent Crunchbase report, Michigan has seen the greatest increase in venture capital investment of all 50 states. VC dollars in Michigan have spiked nearly 886 percent since 2016, growing from around $300 million to about $3.1 billion last year.
About Renaissance Venture Capital
  Renaissance Venture Capital (Renaissance) is a fund of funds that supports the growth of venture capital in Michigan while serving as a bridge between the state's emerging innovation company community and its strong industrial and commercial base. For more information, visit www.renvcf.com.


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PRNewswire/ -- Bank of America today announced that it has awarded a $1 million three-year grant to Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation (DESC) for its Detroit at Work employment initiative, The People Plan. The People Plan is a focused strategy to ensure all Detroiters — especially Black and Brown residents — have a clear pathway to economic sustainability and employers have access to the talent they need to grow and thrive. The goals of the People Plan are to increase residential employment, reduce poverty and improve economic mobility.
  "Bank of America is committed to driving economic opportunity and upward mobility to help put individuals on a path toward success," said Matt Elliott, President, Bank of America Michigan. "The People Plan will work to improve employer access to the talent within the City of Detroit so both business and residents can thrive."
  In Detroit, more than one third of working age residents have been persistently disconnected from the labor force, which is the highest rate in the nation. Additionally, more than 22,000 young adults are not in school or work, and less than 1 in 4 Detroiters age 25 and over have a post-secondary degree. While Black and white residents of Detroit are equally likely to be in the labor force, Black residents are more than twice as likely to be unemployed. Furthermore, just getting a job is often not enough to move out of poverty, especially since those who work in Detroit are less likely to work full-time, full-year jobs as compared to national averages.
  The Bank's $1 million grant will support key initiatives in The People Plan, which include: Detroit at Work Job Training, which encompasses several evidence programs that are designed to help those with a limited work history such as residents functioning at a lower literacy level, returning citizens and individuals on public assistance and/or facing poverty; Learn to Earn, which includes weekly stipends to participants pursuing high school diploma or GED attainment for up to six months and provides intake and academic assessment, career exploration and coaching, essential skill building, supportive services and job placement; and The Friends and Family Choices Program that provides high-touch employment and wrap-around support for residents directly or indirectly involved in gun violence.
  "The People Plan is essential to uplifting Detroit residents who might otherwise not know how to take part in all the programs available," said Nicole Sherard-Freeman, City of Detroit, Group Executive - Jobs, Economy & Detroit at Work. "When simply making it from day to day is a struggle, many people don't have the time or resources to investigate or access the help that is available. The People Plan brings resources to the table so those most at risk get immediate access to the help they need."
  DESC is a nonprofit organization organized to carry out the Detroit workforce area's strategic plan, goals and objectives of the Mayor's Workforce Development Board as the fiscal and administrative agent for workforce. DESC is the lead agency for "Detroit at Work" which provides job placement, search, training, career advisement and other supportive services to tens of thousands of Detroiters every year.

Bank of America awards $1 million
grant to Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation
Renaissance Venture Capitol
helps raise $2.3 billion for 
78 Michigan companies