Welcome to eLab Ventures


TiE Detroit Announces Doug Neal as co-chair of TiECon Midwest 2016

FARMINGTON HILLS , MICHIGAN, U.S., September 19, 2016 /EINPresswire.com/ — The Detroit chapter of TiE, largest non-profit entrepreneurial organization, announced Doug Neal as the co-chair for TiECon Midwest 2016, Michigan’s largest conference to be held October 27 and 28, 2016 at The Henry, Dearborn. The announcement was made by TiE Detroit President, Tel Ganesan.

“We are pleased to announce Doug Neal as the co-chair of TiECon Midwest 2016. Doug has been very instrumental in securing many speakers for mobility, and is now actively involved in consolidating several tracks, such as: digital health (startups), global connectivity, judges, outreach and grand keynote speakers. He has been a great asset to TiE, and we are confident with his efforts and new role he will take this conference to the next level, “ said Tel Ganesan, President TiE DetroitRead full article here


About eLab Ventures

About eLab Ventures

Founded by a team of passionate entrepreneurs and investors with ties to both Silicon Valley and Ann Arbor entrepreneurial ecosystems

Our Team

Our Team

Venture industry veterans with demonstrated commitments to disruptive innovation in emerging entrepreneurial ecosystems



Located in both downtown Ann Arbor and the heart of Silicon Valley

eLab Ventures is an early stage technology venture capital fund created to capitalize on the growth of emerging entrepreneurial markets outside of Silicon Valley and to create bridges to those markets to seek startups with disruptive innovations, exceptional teams, and capital efficient business models that have the potential to serve large markets. eLab is strategically based both in Ann Arbor, to leverage innovation and talent in the Midwest, and in Silicon Valley, to leverage customers, business development, funding sources and a strong network of experienced advisors (our coaches).  We are passionate about nurturing world-changing ideas by connecting entrepreneurs to capital and expertise needed to build great, disruptive companies!

We are early stage investors who work closely with our startup companies. We frequently invest in seed stage companies and the majority of our investment capital is deployed in the Series A round, which we lead, with follow-on investment in the Series B.

Additionally, we don’t restrict our involvement with startups to three months but instead we work side-by-side with startups given each of our deep operating and investment experience, as well as, leverage our customer, coaches and entrepreneurial network to bring the right connections to companies at the right time.

We believe “the team” is the most important aspect of a successful startup company and eLab partners and coaches will work with your company to help you put together the right team so you can nail product-market fit and make your first customers insanely successful (both critical for your success and for attracting additional financing).

eLab has experience in building strong investment syndicates with world class investors. We lead Series A investments either with companies that have already matured into Series A or those companies that have accelerated with eLab as part of the founding team.

News & Events

latest news & events

State-backed program aims to grow Michigan’s VC talent pool

Reda Jaber could have gone in a few directions after graduating in 2014 from the University of Michigan with a trio of graduate degrees.

But rather than go into medicine or clinical research, Jaber opted instead to pursue a career in the venture capital industry. Jaber, who has an MBA, connected with Birmingham-based IncWell LLC, a venture capital firm that invests in early-stage startups where he’s now a partner.

Through IncWell, Jaber became a venture fellow in a program run by the Michigan Venture Capital Association that seeks to groom talent to work in the state’s growing venture capital industry.


MVCA Chairman Doug Neal, managing director of eLab Ventures in Ann Arbor, said venture capital firms in Michigan right now are in much the same situation as the startup companies in which they invest.

“Venture funds are formed and have to grow their talent just like the startups we invest in. And just like startups, a lot of the learning is on the job. A lot of entrepreneurs learn early on and hands-on how to do things,” he said. “In the startups and the firms, it’s all about the right talent.” 

Read full article here

State of Michigan Awards $17 Million to American Center for Mobility’s Driverless Car Project

LANSING — Developers of a planned test bed for driverless cars at Willow Run in Washtenaw County won up to $17 million in state funding to build and operate the project, the state said Tuesday.

The Michigan Strategic Fund, an arm of the Michigan Economic Development Corp., approved the funding for Willow Run Arsenal of Democracy Landholdings LLP, which is handling the purchase of 311 acres at Willow Run in Ypsilanti Township to create the American Center for Mobility.

The state also approved an extra $800,000 to cover short-term operations, beyond an initial $3 million award in March.

The estimated $80 million American Center for Mobility project, when completed, will feature a simulated highway loop and urban street grid to test connected and automated vehicles. The project still needs about $60 million in federal funding; the MEDC said in a March memo that the state’s $20 million total contribution could be used to leverage additional dollars.

Read more here…

Insightful Article Featuring GM Chairman Mary Barra On The Future Of Cybersecurity In Connected Cars

DETROIT – General Motors Chairman and CEO Mary Barra on Friday called on the world’s auto industry to collaborate to develop cybersecurity standards to not only protect the physical security of vehicle owners, but also the personal data they increasingly transmit through the connected vehicle.

“Cybersecurity protects physical safety, privacy and data,” Barra said at the Billington Global Automotive Cybersecurity Summit at Cobo Center. “GM does not view cybersecurity as an area for business advantage.”

Barra said customers are best served by sharing best practices from all industries, including the U.S. defense industry. So far, she said, there has not been a major cyber attack against connected vehicles. But she warned hackers are becoming increasingly sophisticated in how they attack computer networks and smart devices, both of which are heavily used in today’s cars and trucks.

“At GM, we have made cybersecurity a top priority,” Barra said. “We have a senior executive run our cybersecurity team. He also is vice chairman of Auto-ISAC.”

Read more here…

In The Driverless Car Race, California Companies Have Eyes On Michigan

Several years ago, Praveen Singh made a bet on Detroit.

The Silicon Valley technology startup he founded decided to market the advanced wireless systems it developed to the automotive industry. As the market for the technology grew, Singh and his small team at Arada Systems Inc., found themselves spending more time on airplanes, flying from California to Detroit and Washington, D.C., for meetings with automakers and federal transportation administrators.

Those cross-country flights brought Singh to the realization that if he wanted his company to be on the radar — to really compete — it needed to be in Michigan, a state with proximity to major automotive suppliers and, he said, an aggressive approach to connected vehicle development. Not just a satellite office. The whole operation.
So in 2012, the Stanford University graduate and longtime California resident pulled up stakes and moved his firm and his family to Arada’s new headquarters in Troy. Soon, he said, the company was working more closely with automakers, tier-one suppliers, university researchers and the Michigan Department of Transportation.

Read more here…

Blue Medora Named One Of The 10 Coolest Cloud Startups

This startup that builds features and functionality onto VMware’s vRealize cloud management platform got a boost last year when the virtualization giant participated in its $4.6 million Series A round.

Around that time, Blue Medora also established its True Visibility Channel Program.

The Grand Rapids, Mich.-based startup was founded in 2007, but an extension of Oracle’s systems management tools to VMware environments released two years ago put Blue Medora on the enterprise map.

See full article here…


About eLab Ventures

Menlo Innovations office space      photo03

eLab Ventures was founded by a team of passionate entrepreneurs and investors with successful track records in venture capital and creating disruptive startups. Located strategically in both Ann Arbor and Silicon Valley, eLab’s mission is to improve the entrepreneurial ecosystem by bridging valuable but scarce resources from the Valley to local entrepreneurs in the Midwest and other emerging ecosystems.

Unlike an incubator or accelerator, eLab is a full venture capital fund that can support a startup beyond the seed round and all the way through to final liquidity. eLab also provides formal training in entrepreneurship and shared resources to improve capital efficiency for young companies. In addition to its experienced partners and staff, eLab has a committed network of

technology commercialization experts who have agreed to be coaches for aspiring new eLab startup companies. eLab is built on the basic premise that expanding the reach to customers, capital, and liquidity through this network can increase the pace of growth and greatly improve the chances of success for new companies.

Our Team

The Partners and the Advisors of eLab Ventures

The Partners of eLab are venture industry veterans with demonstrated commitments to emerging entrepreneurial ecosystems. Rick and Bob are University of Michigan alums with active involvement in the Schools of Engineering and Law. Doug was previously the Executive Director of the University of Michigan Center for Entrepreneurship from 2009 to 2013. Scott has successfully spent the last 12 years in venture capital focused on spinning innovations out of university research and is a Michigan I-Corps instructor and Paul Brown was previously Vice President of CAPITAL MARKETS at the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), where he managed the bulk of the State’s $2 billion 21st Century Jobs Fund.

The eLab Advisory Board is comprised of leaders committed to building leading companies leveraging the talent, innovation and customers in Michigan and Silicon Valley. The eLab Advisory board members, Ira Jaffe – Attorney and founder of Jaffe Raitt Heuer & Weiss Law Firm, Dave Munson – Dean of Engineering, College of Engineering at the University of Michigan and Dan Rhodes – VP Oncology at Thermo Fisher Scientific, provide guidance and insights to the partner team to build the next generation of innovative business leaders.

eLab Partner Portal


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General Partner


Rick Bolander

Managing Director

San Mateo, CA

Rick Bolander has been a private investor since 1988 launching Blue Sky…


Paul Brown

Managing Director

Ann Arbor, MI

Paul has diverse experience as an entrepreneur and venture capital investor…


Scott Chou

Managing Director

San Mateo, CA

Scott Chou has been in the venture capital industry since 1997 and has been …


Doug Neal

Managing Director

Ann Arbor, MI

Doug Neal has over 20 years of technology industry experience including …


Bob Stefanski

Managing Director

Palo Alto, CA

Bob is an entrepreneur with deep operational and board experience in the …


Advisors & Partners


Ira Jaffe


Southfield, MI

Ira Jaffe is the Founding Partner of Jaffe, Raitt, Heuer & Weiss P.C., Ira is a highly regarded pillar of …


Dave Munson


Ann Arbor, MI

Since 2006, Dave Munson has served as the University of Michigan’s Robert J. Vlasic Dean of Engineering….


Dan Rhodes


Ann Arbor, MI

Dr. Rhodes was co-founder and CEO of a successful cancer genomics and informatics company …

Thomas Zurbuchen

Talent Partner

Ann Arbor, MI

Prof. Thomas Zurbuchen is the Associate Dean of Entrepreneurial Programs in the College of Engineering …

Tom Kinnear

Special Partner

Ann Arbor, MI

Thomas C. Kinnear is D. Maynard Phelps Professor of Business Administration and Professor of Marketing …


The coaches working with the eLab Ventures

The coaches working with the eLab are a world-class group of successful technologists and business people dedicated to fostering entrepreneurship and innovation in Silicon Valley and the Midwest.


Rama Aysola

CEO, SensorFlash;

San Francisco, CA


Hank Barry

Former CEO, Napster; Former VC, Hummer Winblad; Partner, Sidley Austin;

San Francisco, CA


Nancy Benovich Gilby

VP Engineering, A2O Mobile;

Palo Alto, CA


Devon Biondi

VP Strategy Services, Mashery;

San Francisco, CA


Jason Blessing

CEO, Plex Systems;

Troy, MI


Ben Kazez

Sr. Dir Mobile, Expedia; Founder, Mobiata;

Ann Arbor, MI


Scott Kliger

Founder and CEO of Sprink; Founder and CEO Jingle Networks, Superior, CO


Charles Newman

Founder and Chairman Emeritus of ReCellular, Inc.


Nate Oostedorp

Chief Product Officer, Sight Machine; Co-founder, Slashdot;

Ann Arbor, MI


Lou Ostdiek

CTO, Brightidea, Distinguished Engineer, IBM;

San Francisco, CA


Mahendra Ramsinghani

Managing Director, First Step Fund,

Detroit, MI


Jeff Schox

Schox Patent Law;

San Francisco, CA


Richard Sheridan

Founder of Menlo Innovations;

Ann Arbor, MI


Eric Sieczka

Chairman & CEO Epsilon Imaging and Pixel Velocity


Elliot Soloway

Former CEO GoKnow; Arthur F. Thurnau Professor, Univ. of Michigan;

Ann Arbor, MI


Dug Song

Co-founder & CEO, Duo Security; Chief Architecture, Barracuda Networks;

Ann Arbor, MI


Nathan Stoll

Google News Creator; Co-founder, Aardvark;

San Francisco, CA


David Segura

CEO and Founder, VisionIT,

Detroit, MI


Jim Sterken

Co-founder, CEO & CTO, Arbortext,

Ann Arbor, MI


David Tarver

Founder of Telecom Analysis Systems,

Birmingham, MI


Duane Tursi

Co-founder of Netarx, VP Sales and Marketing of Yottabyte,

Bloomfield, MI


Doug Willoughby

Chief Architect, Compuware,

Detroit, MI


about eLab Ventures



Is the eLab a venture fund or an incubator?
Can companies that did not incubate with the eLab receive funding from the eLab?
Is the eLab only open to graduates of the University of Michigan?
How do I apply to get resources and funding from the eLab?

Q. Is the eLab a venture fund or an incubator?

A. eLab is primarily a venture capital fund although it does have shared office and mentorship resources like incubators. Most incubators are essentially real estate or consulting businesses that only provide a small amount of seed capital and/or in kind services. In contrast, eLab can provide capital funding through all rounds of growth for a startup company and does not charge for rent or business advice.

Q. Is the eLab only open to graduates of the University of Michigan?

A. No, the eLab is open to any startup company.

Q. How do I apply to get resources and funding from the eLab?

A. You can start by emailing us a business proposal. PowerPoint is the preferred format. If there is interest in your proposal, we will contact you for a meeting and take the rest from there.


eLab Ventures

eLab Ventures is located in the heart of downtown Ann Arbor just two blocks West of the University of Michigan campus. Being within walking distance of public transportation, amazing restaurants and that largest public research university in the country, this location represents an ideal place to work and network.

Our facility can provide temporary office space for multiple startup companies at a time with high speed Internet, conference rooms, and a fun and energetic atmosphere.

We also maintain a business development office in the heart of Silicon Valley that maintains relationships with strategic partners and venture capital resources. eLab companies are welcome to leverage either facility for their business needs.

Michigan Location

Menlo Innovations office space
eLab Ventures
505 E. Liberty St.
Suite LL500
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
tel: +1 (734) 926-5221

California Location

eLab Ventures
999 Baker Way, Suite 400
San Mateo, CA 94404
tel: +1 (650) 551-5000


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