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Michigan Growth Capital Symposium Announces Speakers for the Midwest's Leading Venture Capital Event

Kevin Conroy, Chairman and CEO of Exact Sciences, to Deliver Keynote Address on the Dynamic Research, Development and Innovation Environment in the Midwest

ANN ARBOR, Mich., April 25, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today, organizers of the Michigan Growth Capital Symposium (MGCS) unveiled initial program details for the 33rd annual event. The Symposium, which serves as a conduit for introducing early stage and emerging growth companies seeking funding, to U.S. investors prospecting deals, is known for attracting high-quality investors from around the country. This year's program will feature a keynote address from Exact Sciences' Kevin Conroy, as well as five panel discussions and a showcase of the most promising early to later stage Midwest, high-growth companies seeking institutional investment within the next 12 months.

Hosted by the Ross School of Business' Zell Lurie Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies with support from the Michigan Venture Capital Association, this year's Symposium will be held June 17-18, 2014 at the Marriott Resort in Ypsilanti, Mich.

More than 400 entrepreneurs, researchers, investment professionals and business executives are expected to attend. Key panel topics covered at this year's event include:

  • Venture Capital Investment Trends in the Midwest
  • VC-Backed Company Boards: Best Practices for Success
  • Putting Big Data to Work in Michigan
  • The Return of the Healthcare IPO
  • Innovations in Healthcare Information Technology

Kevin Conroy Headlines Roster of Respected Industry Speakers
This year's program will kick off with a keynote address from Conroy, Chairman and CEO of Wisconsin-based Exact Sciences, a molecular diagnostics company focused on colorectal cancer. A seasoned and successful healthcare and medical device industry executive, Conroy was appointed Chairman of the Board of Exact Sciences in March 2014. He continues to serve as the company's President and Chief Executive Officer, as he has since April 2009.

Prior to Exact Sciences, Conroy served as President and Chief Executive Officer of molecular diagnostics company Third Wave, acquired by Hologic in July 2008. His career also includes serving as intellectual property counsel at GE Healthcare and stints as Chief Operating Officer of two early stage, venture-backed technology companies. Conroy earned a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from Michigan State University, as well as a law degree from the University of Michigan Law School.

At the Symposium, Conroy will address the thriving innovation economy in the Midwest, complete with an unmatched level of University research, development and talent, as well as its robust early and growth stage financing climates. He will share his experiences building successful healthcare diagnostics companies in this region and will provide suggestions to help the innovation community of investors, founders and advisers to become even more powerful.

In addition to Conroy, the program will feature high-caliber speakers representing entrepreneurs, researchers, investment professionals and business executives who will lead informative discussions on pivotal industry issues. Confirmed speakers include:

  • Jim Adox, Managing Director, Venture Investors
  • Mitchell Bloom, Partner, Goodwin Proctor
  • James Burgum, Managing Partner, Arthur Ventures
  • Ian Clemens, CTO, IDV Solutions
  • Larry Freed, Founder, 2nd Stage Partners, and former President, Foresee
  • Blair Garrou, Managing Director, Mercury Fund
  • Mark Hasebroock, Founder, Dundee Ventures
  • Mark Horne, Managing Partner, Plymouth Venture Partners
  • Tim Mayleben, President and CEO, Esperion Therapeutics
  • Mark Morrison, CEO , IDV Solutions
  • Ted Omlid, Managing Director, Evercore Partners
  • Jim Pavlik, Partner, Baird Capital
  • Tim Petersen, Managing Director, Arboretum Ventures
  • Gerald J. Philipp, Co-CEO, Co-Founder, Lynx Network Group, Inc.
  • Timothy Wadhams, Former CEO, Masco Corporation
  • Kevin Willer, Co-founder and Partner, Chicago Ventures

"This year's event will be a content-rich, information-packed two days with presentations and panel discussions led by amazing local and national speakers," said Jim Adox, President of the Michigan Venture Capital Association and Managing Director at Venture Investors. "We are thrilled that Kevin can kick off the Symposium as our keynote presenter. As a successful entrepreneurial and business leader, Kevin's first-hand experiences and insights about turning opportunities present in the Midwest into highly successful companies will not only motivate attendees, but provide practical knowledge that everyone – investors, founders and service providers – can immediately put into practice."

Selected presenting companies will be announced a few weeks prior to the event. To learn more or to register, visit and follow conversations about the MGCS by tracking #MGCS on Twitter.

About the Michigan Growth Capital Symposium (MGCS)
MGCS is the original university-based venture fair, which was first held in 1979. This nationally attended two-day event provides an opportunity for investors to connect with up-and-coming Midwest businesses and learn about emerging technologies. The Symposium offers the opportunity to build relationships with an unparalleled business network of distinguished private equity industry leaders, leading university research faculty, and entrepreneurial business professionals. MGCS is presented by the Center for Venture Capital & Private Equity Finance and the Zell Lurie Institute at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business with support from the Michigan Venture Capital Association and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.

About the Stephen M. Ross School of Business
The Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan is a vibrant and distinctive learning community grounded in the principle that business can be an extraordinary vehicle for positive change in today's dynamic global economy. The Ross School of Business mission is to develop leaders who make a positive difference in the world. Through thought and action, members of the Ross community drive change and innovation that improves business and society.

Ross is consistently ranked among the world's leading business schools. Academic degree programs include the MBA, Part-time MBA (Evening and Weekend formats), Executive MBA, Global MBA, Master of Accounting, Master of Supply Chain Management, Master of Entrepreneurship, Master of Management, BBA, and PhD. In addition, the school delivers open-enrollment and custom executive education programs targeting general management, leadership development, and strategic human resource management.

SOURCE Michigan Growth Capital Symposium

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