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July 05, 2011 - Image 2

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Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 2011-07-05

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Tuesday, July 5, 2011
The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

TechArb moves to location in Tally Hall

Entrepreneurial
incubator's new
environment to
enhance creativity'
By GIACOMO BOLOGNA
Daily StaffReporter
The University's business incu-
bator TechArb will continue on
its quest to help students develop
into successful entrepreneurs and
business owners as it makes the
move from McKinley Towne Cen-
ter to the basement of a parking
garage at The Offices at Liberty
Square, formerly known as Tally
Hall.
Both the Towne Centre and the
Tally Hall locations are owned by
the Ann Arbor-based real estate
company, McKinley, but accord-
ing to Thomas Gritter, vice presi-
dent and managing director of
commercial real estate at McKin-
ley, the basement at The Offices
at Liberty Square will be cheaper

than the Towne Center location. garage, working on the next big ural light is a hard trade-off for
TechArb - which is jointly run thing," Neal said. space."
by the Center for Entrepreneur- MBA student Ben Blackmer Gillian Henker, a recent Engi-
ship at the College of Engineering said TechArb's goal in the office neering graduate and member
and the Samuel Zell & Robert H. at McKinley Towne Centre is not of the TechArb venture Design
Lurie Institute for Entrepreneur- strictly confined to business ini- Innovations for Infants and Moth-
ial Studies at the Ross School of tiatives, but also to promote col- ers Everywhere, said TechArb is
Business - houses approximately laboration among students. especially useful for non-business
20 student groups and provides "It's very eclectic and it fosters students. She said engineers often
them with an area to work 24 a lot of interaction between the have great ideas, but encounter
hours a day with free Internet and groups," said MBA student Ben difficulty when turning them into
guidance from entrepreneurs and Blackmer. business models.
University faculty. Teams cho- Blackmer and University alum "TechArb has been great in
sen for the project are given six Stuart VandenBrink are members giving us that business support,"
months to work with TechArb and of "Are You A Human?" a company Henker said.
utilize their resources. working on alternative methods to While the move from the fourth
However, the program is not CAPTCHAs - a program used by floor of the McKinley Towne Cen-
exclusive to engineers and busi- many websites to verify users are tre means a loss of windows over-
ness majors, according to Doug human rather than computer gen- looking downtown Ann Arbor,
Neal, managing director of the erated. Neal predicted even greater entre-
Center for Entrepreneurship in However, Paul Davis, a recent preneurial creativity among stu-
the College of Engineering. MBA and environmental sci- dents.
Neal said he hopes the new ence graduate and a member of Neal said the new space will
location will provide more space the TechArb venture ReGenerate serve as an "entrepreneurial hive"
to accommodate additional teams, Solutions, LLC, said he thinks the and will provide a designated area
adding he hopes to have about 25 move will be a disadvantage for to increase interaction between
teams for the next six-month peri- TechArb because fewer windows TechArb, students and other
od starting in November. mean less natural light. entrepreneurs.
"We're putting entrepreneurs "Light inspires innovation," "You want somewhat of a con-
in the perfect habitat, here in the Davis explained. "The loss of nat- trolled chaos," Neal said.

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I
I

EDITORIAL STAFF
Mak yurns

Managing Editor

Retaining the film industry in Michigan

BriePrusak ManagingNews Editor
bp'"sak*michiga"daily.
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tedapaes@michigandaiy com
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I
I

At event, 'U' officials
discuss benefits of
film tax incentives
for economic growth
By KATE HUMMER
For the Daily
LANSING - In a presenta-
tion on Wednesday at the Capitol
Building in Lansing, members of
the University community dis-
cussed the drawbacks to ending
Michigan's film incentive pro-
gram and considered ways to
amend it for the future.
Jim Burnstein - Hollywood
screenwriter, University lec-
turer in Screen Arts & Cultures,
and vice chair of the Michigan
Film Office Advisory Council -
presented his proposal "Amend,
Don't End" at the event, a plan
to amend Michigan film incen-
tive tax by reducing Michigan's
incentive rebate from 42 percent
to 32 percent.

Additionally, Burnstein's plan
calls to offer additional incen-
tives to film companies that do
post-production work in Michi-
gan, and advocates for a collabor-
ative effort with Pure Michigan
that includes placing their logos
in the credits of films made in the
state as part of an effort to pro-
mote tourism.
The film incentives bill,
passed in 2008, provided a 42
percent rebate to production-
related expenses incurred in the
state. According to Burnstein, it
accomplished three goals: to cre-
ate jobs, build infrastructure and
reverse the "brain drain" - the
loss of Michigan's young talent to
more "successful" states.
Burnstein noted that at least
4,000 full-time, lucrative jobs
have been created by the film
industry in Michigan since 2008,
adding that part of the upswing
can be attributed to the opening
of Motown Motion Picture Stu-
dios in Pontiac in 2009, which
was constructed by Raleigh Stu-
dios, one of the biggest motion

picture facilities in the world.
There has been an increase
in Michigan students moving
to Detroit after graduating to
pursue film careers in the state,
Burnstein said.
He also discussed the "multi-
plier effect" perpetuated by the
film industry, urging the audi-
ence to consider jobs created by
large film casts and crews look-
ing to utilize Michigan hotels, eat
at Michigan restaurants and rent
cars from Michigan businesses.
He added that for every incentive
dollar spent, there is a six-dollar
positive impact on the state's
economy.
Burnstein said he doesn't
believe Republican Gov. Rick
Snyder or the Michigan Treasury
Department took into account
the positive impact of film incen-
tives when they rallied to support
the new, 2011 film incentive bill
- which places a $25 million per
year cap on rebates given to film
companies that shoot in Michi-
gan.
Now that the Michigan film

incentive is at risk of being
reduced, Burnstein said not only
could the state potentially lose
University graduates studying
film to other parts of the coun-
try as they search for careers,
but also high caliber students in
other fields that may be related
to film, exacerbating the brain
drain.
Robert Rayher, University
lecturer in Screen Arts & Cul-
tures, ended the presentation
by discussing an upper-level
Screen Arts course that collabo-
rates with Michigan's top three
research universities - the Uni-
versity of Michigan, Michigan
State University, and Wayne State
University - to bring together
the top film students from each
school to create a professional,
20-minute film.
Rayher said he credits the
course with significantly help-
ing to keep the film industry in
Michigan.
"(We're) keeping the hope
alive via this program," Rayher
said.

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