Happy New Year from SPARK East in Ypsilanti!
This was our SPARK East look for the past 8 years. We decided to make some changes late in 2017, including adding 35% more space for new tenants and upgrading the facilities.
The big news is that in 2017 not only did we paint the inside and outside of SPARK East but the Ann Arbor Ypsilanti SmartZone was one of only three SmartZones in Michigan to receive a 15-year funding extension. This means that SPARK East will be able to continue to provide services to Ypsilanti.
You will see some substantial changes at SPARK East in 2018 but rest assured that we will still have the same great coffee!
The Ann Arbor Ypsilanti SmartZone activities include providing startups with business acceleration and incubator services, creating networking opportunities, and leading talent attraction and retention efforts. SPARK East hosts the popular “Starting Your Own Business” every month, check out the upcoming events in January and February on SPARK’s event calendar.
In 2017, SPARK East graduated several of its tenants, including the successful White Pine Software Technologies. White Pine tapped in to the many resources available at SPARK East to fuel its growth from SPARK East into new location on North Huron Street on the edge of downtown Ypsilanti.
Other tenants at SPARK East include: Sensei Change, Amy Cell Talent, Real LINGUA, LaVision, Deepgram, ReValue, and Workforce Intelligence Network, to name a few.
SPARK East has hosted some popular meet ups events connecting the game development community along with developers interested in artificial intelligence and machine learning. We hope to do more programs in 2018 including fin tech, mobility, and autonomous and connected vehicles. If you have some thoughts on creating a new meet-up, please send them my way.
While there are lots of new improvements planned for 2018, rest assured that we will continue to have the best coffee in downtown Ypsilanti. Hyperion Coffee in Ypsilanti is our special roaster. While Hyperion provides coffee to many of the technology companies and restaurants in Washtenaw County, you can only get the special Joe’s Dark Roast (named after me!) at SPARK East. So, if you are looking to start a technology company in Ypsilanti or just looking for a good cup of Joe (pun intended), please stop by SPARK East in 2018.