Area Medical Device Group Seeks Members

November 27, 2007
| By Pete Daly |
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GRAND RAPIDS — The West Michigan Science & Technology Initiative plans to vigorously grow the West Michigan Medical Device Consortium, which has seven member companies and is less than six months old.

"We anticipate, at minimum, 20 new members by the end of the year," said Linda Chamberlain, executive director of the WMSTI.

She does not think that goal is unrealistic: "We have those numbers in the community. It's not as if we can't reach that goal," she said.

Potential member companies throughout West Michigan have been contacted, and existing consortium member companies have been invited to a reception at WMSTI headquarters on Dec. 5 where they can "weigh in on what they want to see" happen, said Chamberlain.

"We have goals for membership for the next five years," she added. "We will be announcing new members after the first of the year."

The West Michigan Medical Device Consortium was announced in June, as a way to organize and promote the capabilities of West Michigan companies that can serve as contract manufacturers and suppliers for the medical devices industry. The founding members include Atek Medical, Inrad, MedBio, Autocam Medical, Emerald Medical, Rose Technologies and Surge Medical.

Members of the consortium benefit from frequent updates about the medical device industry, training, special seminars and planning with a new-product emphasis.

"But the bottom line is, it's about attracting business to the region," said Chamberlain. "Together, we make a pretty darn good story."

The WMSTI is headquartered in the GVSU Cook-DeVos Center for Health Sciences in Grand Rapids. It was formed in 2003 as a partnership between The Right Place Inc.; Van Andel Institute; Grand Valley State University; the city of Grand Rapids; and Grand Rapids Community College. Since its inception, WMSTI has assisted more than 70 clients in the commercialization of new products, including funding through more than $7 million in federal and state grant awards. The initiative has also supported projects and the creation of businesses, such as ClinXus and Grand River Aseptic Pharmaceutical Packaging.    

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