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Greenfield Partners move to A2 because of start-up scene

Ann Arbor's entrepreneurial reputation not only preceded the move of Greenfield Partners, but it inspired the investment firm's move to Tree Town.

The Bloomfield Hills-based firm run by Benjamin Rye and his father, Jon Rye, both University of Michigan graduates, is in the midst of moving to Ann Arbor's start-up rich pastures. The reason? The multitude of investment opportunities coming from U-M.

"It's really a question of brain power," says Benjamin Rye, managing partner of Greenfield Partners. "We see a number of opportunities in Ann Arbor because of the entrepreneurial culture."

Jon Rye started Greenfield Partners in the 1980s, focusing his efforts on private equity and business turnarounds. He put the company on hold in 1995 until resurrecting it in 2008 with his son. Now the younger Rye plans to focus on seed investments coming from places like U-M's School of Engineering. Jon Rye plans to be active in the firm from a private equity standpoint.

Both Ryes and one more principal plan to raise an investment fund this year. The team plans to have a fully funded investment vehicle and 1-2 portfolio investments primarily made up of university spin-outs and Ann Arbor-based firms by the end of the year. To start,
Greenfield Partners is offering a $10,000 grant to a student-run start-up participating in an entrepreneurial experience contest at TechArb.

"We think Ann Arbor is going to be the hub for the state moving forward," Rye says.

Source: Benjamin Rye, managing partner of Greenfield Partners
Writer: Jon Zemke

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Related Company

  • Greenfield Partners
    Ann Arbor, MI 48104 Website
    Greenfield Partners is an investment company that specializes in early seed and private equity investments. It's based in Ann Arbor and is run by University of Michigan graduates.