Making the most of your investment

Whether you are looking to relocate or expand, running a business is hard enough. How do you balance the day-to-day demands while looking to grow? Let Southwest Michigan First partner with you to drive the business development process and maximize your investment. Our team has the knowledge and experience in a wide variety of state and local incentives, including brownfield incentives, to reduce your bottom line and make your business more competitive.

Find examples of how we can support your continued growth below.

We make it easier for you to get the funding options you need. Contact our investment team at 269.553.9588 to find out more today.
  • The Michigan Business Development Program (MBDP), available from the Michigan Strategic Fund (MSF) in partnership with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), provides performance-based grants and loans to competitive projects in the state based on investment, job creation, and industry.
  • A Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) grant program, the Freight Economic Development Program is intended to help expanding or new businesses connect to Michigan’s rail system by covering up to 50% of costs associated with rail infrastructure.
  • The Michigan New Jobs Training Program (MNJTP) captures payroll tax on new jobs in the state to reimburse employer-specific tailored training programs for employees through local community colleges.
  • The Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO) created the Going PRO Talent Fund to address skill shortages by reskilling and upskilling, ensure employers have the talent required to compete, grow, and support employees’ growth opportunities. Up to $2,000 per employee in grant assistance is available to employers that provide credentialed training programs to employees.
  • Michigan’s State Trade Expansion Program (MI-STEP) offers financial assistance for exporting activities to eligible Michigan small businesses, enabling access to global markets and buyers through a 75% reimbursement of up to $15,000 of eligible expenses.
  • Through our close connections with the economic development teams at area utility providers, we can help your business leverage utility rebates and rate rider discounts where applicable.
  • An Industrial Property Tax Abatement (PA 198) reduces the ongoing tax burden for eligible businesses making new investments in the state by abating 50% of net new real taxes on-site developments for up to 12 years.
  • The Brownfield Redevelopment Program (PA 381) serves to implement brownfield plans and develop brownfield properties. This incentive leverages Tax Increment Financing (TIF), which captures net new taxes on a redevelopment to reimburse the developer for eligible costs.
  • The Eligible Manufacturing Personal Property Exemption (EMPP) exempts personal property tax from qualified manufacturing equipment and machinery.
  • The Obsolete Property Rehabilitation Act (PA 146) affords property tax exemptions for up to a period of 12 years on commercial and commercial housing properties that are rehabilitated and meet certain requirements of the act.
  • For up to a period of 10 years, the Commercial Rehabilitation Act (PA 210) allows a tax incentive for the rehabilitation of commercial property for the primary purpose and use of a commercial business or multi-family residential facility.
  • Through a State Education Tax (SET) Abatement, Michigan can abate half or all the six-mill State Education Tax (SET) on new investment when the project presents a significant economic benefit to Michigan.
  • The State Essential Services Assessment (SESA) Exemption is another program leveraged through the MEDC for companies investing more than $25 million in personal property, where the exemption is equal to 100% of the SESA amount for a period of up to 12 years. Alternative SESAs are equal to a 50% exemption for a period of years.
  • Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) are available to both businesses and communities through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). This federal grant program can be used for various infrastructure and development projects.
  • Attractive to businesses that locate in one of 14 counties that border another state or Canada, Border County Incentives may allow a business to receive up to 100% abatement of business personal property taxes through a partnership between the State of Michigan and local municipalities.
  • The Michigan Community Revitalization Program (MCRP) is a community-specific program administered by the MEDC on behalf of the MSF that offers communities access to real estate development gap financing for innovative and/or impactful placemaking, historical redevelopment, and/or job growth in targeted sectors.
  • Another MDOT program targeting communities, the Transportation Economic Development Fund (TEDF) seeks to promote increased economic potential and job creation in the state through offsetting construction costs related to transportation projects.
  • Southwest Michigan First can connect businesses to a variety of Capital Access tools that support business growth.
  • Part of the Michigan Capital Network, Ka-Zoo Angels is a member-driven organization that offers funding options to Southwest Michigan entrepreneurs through early-stage investments in start-up and rapid-growth companies.
  • The Capital Access Program, offered through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), is an innovative program designed to assist small businesses with capital needs.
  • The Collateral Support Program, also offered through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), enables suppliers to acquire the necessary financing that might otherwise be unavailable because of a collateral shortfall according to the lender’s analysis.
  • Most of Southwest Michigan is covered by Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ) #43, an inland U.S. Customs Port of Entry and Foreign Trade Zone, that allows foreign and domestic merchandise to be admitted for storage, exhibition, assembly, manufacture, production, and processing without formal customs entry procedures, the payment of customs duties, or the payment of federal excise taxes. To learn how the FTZ #43 can benefit your business, watch this.
  • The Pure Michigan Business Connect (PMBC) is an MEDC portal offering businesses opportunities to fulfill the procurement needs of other businesses in the state. The PMBC team also provides matchmaking services at no cost to the company.
  • Customized to your business needs, the experts at Southwest Michigan First provide data-driven research so you have accurate and up-to-date information on wages, labor availability, industry and occupational trends, job postings, and other relevant information.