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Posted on Thu, Oct 8, 2009 : 8:26 a.m.

Deals of the Year nominees announced by's Business Review

By Staff

Today's list of 21 nominees for the 5th annual Deals of the Year award shows the ongoing business successes in the Ann Arbor region in seven key sectors.

Nominees were chosen in seven categories that represent the most active economic drivers in this region.

A winner in each category will be announced at the Nov. 6 awards event, hosted by's Business Review at the Four Points by Sheraton. 

Winners also will be named in two other categories that do not have publicly named finalists: Executive of the year and company of the year. Winners of those awards in 2008 were Roger Newton and HealthMedia.

The nominees are:

Banking and Finance

Lycera: The University of Michigan spinoff biotech firm landed $36 million in venture capital funding to accelerate clinical work on its top drug candidates.

NanoBio: The Ann Arbor-based biotech firm and U-M spinoff secured $22 million in two rounds of venture capital to continue developing its nanoemulsion technology, which has applications in a variety of therapies.

Local microloan collaborative: Several groups collaborated to create four microloan programs collectively worth $1.5 million to boost early-stage entrepreneurial efforts in Washtenaw County.

Commercial Real Estate

Cooley Law School: Expands into Ann Arbor by leasing the 84,500-square-foot former Ave Maria Law School building in June.

Thomson Reuters: Ongoing growth of the global company - particularly its health division- prompted it to lease another floor in the 777 building, which now bears its logo.

Xoran Technologies: Its move into 45,000 square feet on South State filled long-vacant space and doubled the growing company’s footprint in Ann Arbor.

Construction and Development

Near North: Developers teamed with Avalon Housing to get city approval and neighbor collaboration on the plan to build 39 affordable units north of downtown.

University of Michigan’s Stephen Ross School of Business: The $145 million, 270,000-square-foot hub of business education opened in January.

Cedars of Dexter: Framing is underway on half of the 60 two-bedroom retirement cottages that have an estimated construction value of $10 million.

Health Care

Terumo Heart: The subsidiary of Japanese giant Terumo Corp. is concluding a $3.6 million expansion as its sister company on the Scio Township campus still grows after a 2008 tax abatement.

St. Joseph Mercy Health System and Chelsea Community Hospital: Their merger was finalized, and the health system contributed $25 million to create the Chelsea Area Wellness Foundation.

Life Science Innovation Partnership: The University of Michigan’s Life Sciences Institute raised more than $2 million to allow its faculty to continue pursuing innovative scientific ideas that might have global health applications.


Gift of Life Michigan: The statewide organ transplant agency completed its two-year renovation and expansion of its 40,000-square-foot building, growing its capabilities even as it posted new records for number of donors and transplants.

Packard Community Clinic: The clinic opened a facility on the west side of Ann Arbor, its first expansion after 36 years of providing local health care regardless of a patient’s ability to pay.

Neighborhood Senior Services: The nonprofit announced that it would merge with Catholic Social Services as response to an ongoing funding crisis, setting a leadership example among nonprofits as the consolidation cuts costs while retaining services.


Sakti3: The Ann Arbor-based vehicle battery startup, a U-M spinoff led by global battery expert Ann Marie Sastry, raised $5 million in private capital, expanded into bigger facilities and struck a technology partnership with General Motors.

U-M solar energy center: The university won an intense competition to land a 5-year, $19.5 million federal grant to establish a solar energy research center that solidifies the university’s status as a national leader in photovoltaic technology.

NeuroNexus Technologies: The Ann Arbor-based tech signed a deal with Netherlands-based giant Philips Research to develop a device to treat Parkinson’s disease.


TechArb: U-M collaborated with McKinley Inc. and RPM Ventures to create a free business incubator for student entrepreneurs.

GDI Infotech: The longtime Ann Arbor IT consulting firm acquired local firm Soft-Link International in a deal that allows GDI to expand into new markets.

Clean Energy Coalition: The Ypsilanti-based nonprofit vaulted to a statewide profile after acquiring a $15 million grant to help Michigan cities, companies and transportation organizations acquire clean energy vehicles and install alternative fueling infrastructure.

Tickets for the black-tie Deals of the Year gala, which will be from 6 p.m. to midnight, are now available at $95 per person or $850 for a table of 10. For information, visit the Deals of the Year website or call Kori Isaac at 734-623-4651.

View an invitation to the event here.

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