Resources for Start-Up Businesses

Welcome to MAREC's Business Incubator Program.As a service of MAREC’s Business Incubation Program, this page offers selected resources that offer the start-up business entrepreneur some starting points for information, education and training, services, planning, consultation, networking, and funding. 

More help for start-up entrepreneurs is available on our Business Incubator webpage  or by contacting Joe Graczyk, MAREC Incubator Manager, at or 616-331-6914.

Michigan SBIR/STTR
Assistance Program

    Business Planning   Michigan Renewable Energy
Business News

Lakeshore Business Organizations

    GVSU Business Resources    

Business Organizations
Meeting at MAREC

    Funding Sources for Start-Ups    


Michigan SBIR/STTR Assistance Program

BBC logo. The Michigan SBIR/STTR Assistance Program provides SBIR/STTR training and proposal development services to technology companies with costs covered in whole or part by the state.  The program is funded by the Michigan Strategic Fund (MSF), administered by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) and managed by BBC Entrepreneurial Training & Consulting LLC

The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)/Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs award over $2.4 billion annually in non-dilutive R&D grants and contracts through 11 federal agencies.  The Assistance Program helps Michigan companies be more competitive in this national proposal and award process.  

What is SBIR/STTR and how can I obtain grant funding for my company?

Am I ready to apply for an SBIR/STTR grant?

This BBC online assessment will help you decide your next steps.


BBC Training Calendar:   Click for Workshops & Webinars

Read more about SBIR/STTR:

Pure Michigan logo.Tech Entrepreneurs in Michigan: Are You Getting What’s Coming to You?

From the Michigan Advantage Blog, published by MEDC.



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Lakeshore Business Organizations



E-Merge has a terrific list of business partners and resources, which is well worth its own browse.  MAREC lists some of the same partners here, sometimes for different reasons, but we encourage you to visit their comprehensive resource and website.

e-Merge Partners and Resources


Chamber of Commerce Grand Haven, Spring Lake, Ferrysburg



The Michigan Small Business and Technology Development Center (Mi-SBTDC) is a statewide network of seasoned professional business advisors who offer free counseling, information-based planning (market research) and technology commercialization to new and existing businesses in Michigan.


Muskegon Area First

Muskegon Area First encourages and facilitates economic development activities in Muskegon County that retain and create job opportunities, support the tax base, and spur private investment. 


Muskegon Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce

The Muskegon Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce is the premier business membership organization on the lakeshore. This is a dedicated group of entrepreneurs, self-employed professionals, corporate leaders, and business and professional organizations collaborating to protect, expand and promote local business interests. 



SCORE is a nonprofit association dedicated to entrepreneur education and the formation, growth and success of small businesses nationwide. More than 13,000 volunteers at 350 chapters provide in-person, individual, free, confidential counseling and mentoring. Counseling is done by appointment only. Access to over 1,600 online counselors representing more than 600 areas of business expertise is available through the SCORE national website. SCORE also provides online workshops/webinars, local workshops and online business tools, newsletters, and the like. SCORE is a partner with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). 

Business Organizations Meeting at MAREC

Several organizations take advantage of MAREC’s central location, convenience, flexibility and role as a public forum and meeting place for activities in the Muskegon and Lakeshore community.  These organizations benefit the start-up entrepreneur by offering networking opportunities and speakers on current business practices and trends—all under our barrel-shaped roof.  

Muskegon Inventors Network (MIN)

A regional not-for-profit inventor/marketer support group for West Michigan people with creative ideas, inventors and others who may find benefit or offer support services. Its purpose is to assist West Michigan inventors and marketers reach their personal goals. Its method to achieve this is through education and networking.

Success Express / Business Network International (BNI)

Local website  |  National website

Located in Muskegon, Success Express is a growing member of BNI (Business Networking International).  Success Express fosters the business of its members by building relationships and expanding their networks through word-of-mouth marketing and referrals.  Serving Muskegon, North Muskegon, Spring Lake, Grand Haven, Whitehall and Holland, Michigan.

“If you would like to increase the volume of your business through personal referrals, BNI is for you. We invite you to join us at our next meeting and see how word-of-mouth marketing builds business.” – quoted from Success Express


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Business Planning

Listed below are some business plan development resources.

Sample Business Plan - Web Based Collaborative

Sample Business Plan - Template/Static


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Guide to Funding Sources for Start-Ups


Michigan Women's Foundation - The Angel Micro Loan Fund

For women entrepreneurs.


Business Accelerator Fund

Click for more info.


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Michigan Renewable Energy Business News

  Several Michigan organizations provide useful and valuable coverage of the renewable energy sector, its development, opportunities, professional activities, and the like. Here are a few that will be helpful to entrepreneurs and other professionals in the renewable energy and technology areas.

Michigan Energy Innovation Business Council

  Mich. Energy Innovation Business Council. The Michigan Energy Innovation Business Council (also known as Mi-EIBC) is a trade association representing companies in Michigan’s growing advanced energy sector. It provides a weekly newsletter with a compact yet thorough round-up, including:
  • News Highlights
  • Michigan Energy News
  • Upcoming Michigan Events
  • Upcoming National Energy Events
  • US Advanced Energy News
  • Funding Opportunities
  • Webinars

Visit their website home page to sign up for this free newsletter.

Mi-EIBC’s mission is to grow Michigan’s advanced energy economy by fostering opportunities for innovation and business growth and offering a unified voice in creating a business-friendly environment for the advanced energy industry in Michigan.

Great Lakes Renewable Energy Association

  Great Lakes Renewable Energy Association logo. The Great Lakes Renewable Energy Association is a statewide nonprofit organization that educates, advocates, and promotes renewable energy. Its monthly newsletter compiles regular features including:
  • GLREA News
  • Member Highlights
  • Michigan News
  • Beyond Michigan
  • Events
Send a note to to subscribe to this free newsletter.
As a related communications and networking feature, GLREA also hosts an interactive directory of its renewable energy business members.  Click for:

Interactive Business Directory

Business Directory PDF

Founded in 1991, GLREA works by advocating for stronger state policies and by informing and educating Michigan citizens, organizations, and leaders on how they can achieve a greater use of renewable energy and its many economic and environmental benefits.


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Page last modified August 11, 2015