Are all entrepreneurs alike? We don’t think so. The person developing a new venture-backed thingamajig doesn’t have the same needs as someone who’s growing a start-up on their own. But they both need solid and well-vetted business plans, the right connections, and sound advice. Learn about the services that are available, and lock into those that meet your needs.
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The Grand Rapids Inventors Network (GRIN) is a member-based, networking organization dedicated to helping innovative ideas get off the ground. GRIN is open to anyone with an idea for a product, service or process.
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The Michigan Economic Development Center is dedicated to community growth through business development, workforce training and education, export information, labor market statistics, government procurement, strategic planning.
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AWE is the place where women give and receive knowledge and experience that will help all members become better business leaders.  As the leader of your business, you know life can get pretty lonely at the top.  Wouldn’t it be nice to connect with professional women who have walked in your shoes?  To have a peer organization that you can turn to for advice, for learning, for input?  That’s why the Alliance of Women Entrepreneurs was formed in 1984.
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GVSU Business Resource Portal: As one of the most comprehensive business support networks in Michigan, we are dedicated to sharing knowledge, expertise, and opportunities within the West Michigan business community and beyond. Search the directory below by service category or by organization to tap into our intellectual, technical, and human resources available through Grand Valley State University and its affiliated organizations.
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In our Resource Center, you will find an array of resources and tools to help you start and operate a business in Michigan. From tips on writing a business plan to financing your business, our resource center has it all. Take a moment to browse through it and be sure to check out the “Try Business One Stop” feature where you can create scenarios for starting different types of businesses and learn the state requirements for getting started, including costs and time frames. No phone calls. No hassles. No commitment.
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The Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation (CEI), in the Seidman College of Business at Grand Valley State University, serves to champion and catalyze the vocation of entrepreneurship. CEI works to accomplish this mission through development of talent and commercialization support. CEI focuses on the development of talent by providing grounding in the fundamentals of entrepreneurial practice, focused on the application of the 21st Century Skills (in creativity, communication, collaboration and critical thinking) crucial for new venture success. CEI focuses on commercialization support by providing an essential hub where new ideas can connect to resources to maximize conversion to value for the benefit of businesses and the community as a whole.
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Headquartered at Grand Valley State University, the Michigan Small Business & Technology Development Center (MI-SBTDC) provides counseling, training and market research for new ventures, existing small businesses and innovative technology companies.
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(CCL) is one resource in Grand Rapids for community orientation, leadership development and community engagement programs. The CCL offers a portfolio of nationally recognized programs including Leadership Grand Rapids, Inside Grand Rapids, Download GR, Leadership Advantage, Leadership Forum and Customized Leadership Programs designed to connect and enhance leaders in our community.
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The City of Grand Rapids Planning Commission offers information on doing business in Grand Rapids, information on tax abatements, business expansion, downtown development and small business assistance.
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The Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce is a dedicated to helping Grand Rapids businesses grow and be successful. Members have access to networking opportunities, business development seminars and preferred providers in insurance, telecommunications, and other industries that small businesses may not be able to take advantage of on their own.
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The Michigan Minority Business Enterprise Center provides business counseling, financial support, and training and education to the area’s minority-owned businesses.
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Similar to GRIN, the Muskegon Inventors Network (MIN) is a member-based networking organization dedicated to helping innovative ideas get off the ground. The MIN is a resource center with ideas, books, web site suggestions, and other information to assist people with their creative endeavors.
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The Grand Valley Metropolitan Council brings together public and private sectors to plan and coordinate services and investments to benefit the growth and development of the region.
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A virtual incubator that uses online communication tools and a web portal to provide mid- to long-term counseling and coaching that result in solutions and growth for small businesses in Michigan
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(FBA) is a partnership of the Chamber and the Seidman College of Business at Grand Valley State University and is dedicated to strengthening the profitability, progress and continuity of West Michigan’s family businesses. The FBA provides information, tools and resources for family business owners, family members, executives and employees through a variety of workshops, seminars and networking opportunities.
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The Michigan Department of Economic Quality provides information and assistance to Michigan citizens, businesses, municipalities and agencies in understanding and meeting their environmental protection responsibilities.
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The Right Place is the economic development organization for the Grand Rapids region and works to bring new and expanded business opportunities to the area. Its mission is to promote wealth creation and economic growth in the areas of quality employment, productivity and innovation in West Michigan by developing jobs through leading business retention, expansion and attraction efforts.
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Grand Rapids Opportunities for Women (GROW) provides business counseling services and support for women entrepreneurs in the Grand Rapids area. GROW provides training and ongoing counseling needed to start a business, plus support services needed to sustain and grow a business.
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The Great Lakes Entrepreneur’s Quest (GLEQ) encourages and educates entrepreneurs on the creation, start up and early growth stages of high-growth businesses within Michigan.
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The Michigan Department of Management and Budget provides information on applying for state contracts.
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Lakeshore Advantage is the economic development organization for the Holland and Zeeland, Mich. area and is the one-stop organization along the lakeshore for assisting entrepreneurs with getting their businesses off the ground. 201 West Washington Avenue Zeeland, MI 49464-1086 616.772.5226
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Programs are available for technical assistance and financial support for starting or expanding small businesses through the Grand Rapids Urban League.
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Jandernoa Entrepreneurial Mentoring was launched to help entrepreneurs take their businesses to the next level. To qualify for the three-year mentoring program, an entrepreneur’s business must have at least $1 million in annual sales, employ at least five workers and agree to contribute $3,500 each year toward the program.
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Representing a cross-section of more than 1,160 business member organizations, the Holland Area Chamber of Commerce actively facilitates, educates, and advocates on behalf of our members through our services and programs.
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The West Michigan Science and Technology Initiative: When companies or individuals come to the Initiative for help, they meet with a team experienced and skilled in product development, intellectual property, business planning, marketing and sales. For a business development fee, the Initiative provides: Connections to executive and technical talent, entrepreneurial support and advice, assistance in locating potential funding resources, referrals to qualified service providers, management coaching, business plan development and assistance, access to the area’s incubator network.
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Provides free and confidential business advice to any entrepreneur or business owner in Kent County or the surrounding area – in person, by phone or via e-mail. SCORE also offers low-cost business workshops that provide an overview to starting and planning a business. The workshops cover researching business ideas, analyzing the competition, deciding on which type of business entity to create an, creating a business plan.
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Members have access to a group of full-time staff who are dedicated to improving the manufacturing climate in Michigan and serving the needs of manufacturers. The MMA main phone line, (517) 372-5900, is an automated menu-driven system that enables you to reach the appropriate department or individual.
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The Zeeland Chamber of Commerce is a voluntary organization composed of businesses, professional, civic, and educational leaders united together to fulfill the mission of this organization. Funding for this non-profit organization comes primarily from membership investments, and volunteers accomplish the Program of Work of the Chamber with the assistance of a small staff.
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Neighborhood Ventures assists small businesses with problem solving, zoning issues, finances, environmental cleanup renovation, road construction and other issues.
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The Muskegon Area Chamber of Commerce is the premier business membership organization on the lakeshore. As the business community prospers and the region flourishes, the mission of the Muskegon Area Chamber of Commerce continues to grow in importance.
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The Chamber of Grand Haven, Spring Lake, and Ferrysburg is the “go to place” for businesses in Northwest Ottawa County.  Local investors, outside investors, visitors and residents rely on us to be the central clearing house for community-wide information, referrals and economic development services.
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The Van Andel Global Trade Center advances international trade and supports West Michigan businesses as they prepare to enter and prosper in the era of international business competition.
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The West Michigan Hispanic Chamber is dedicated to working with all members of the community to increase the economic advancement of Hispanic owned businesses and to assist in the professional growth of Hispanic business leaders in West Michigan.
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