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Pure Commitment

BWD Magazine, Winter 2012-13

Rehmann steps up to support tomorrow's superstar businesses

In 1976, two men in their twenties toiled away in a Los Altos, California, garage on hand-built personal computer kits they hoped to sell to their friends and colleagues in a local computer club.

By 2012, the company started by Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak - Apple - was the most highly-valued company in the world, having revolutionized personal computing several times over.

Apple isn't the only one: the history of American business abounds with successful companies that launched from garages across the country, including recent giants Google and Amazon.

There are a number of Michigan originals, too, with the history-changing automobile industry topping the list. But what's next? What kind of innovations are bubbling up in entrepreneurial minds - and garages - throughout the state?

Focusing on the future

Identifying and supporting the next round of American business giants is the goal of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation's (MEDC) Pure Michigan Business Connect, a statewide initiative designed to spur growth among the thousands of companies that call Michigan home.

The MEDC can't do it alone, though. Supporting these companies is a Herculean task requiring significant contributions from established companies.

That's where Rehmann comes in.

In what is the first accounting sector contribution to date – and one of the largest overall – Rehmann pledged $200,000 in services to Pure Michigan Business Connect.

Over the next five years, Rehmann will offer companies in the early stages of development accounting, consulting and tax services through its offices in several Michigan locations, including Saginaw, Troy, Ann Arbor, Farmington Hills, Detroit, Jackson, Grand Rapids, Traverse City, Lansing, Cheboygan, Muskegon and Midland.

"We're thrilled with the opportunity to contribute to Michigan's exciting future," Rehmann Principal Mary McCune said.

Rehmann will provide up to 250 hours of services annually through 2016, with each Pure Michigan Business Connect program participant receiving up to 20 hours of service.

"Jump start"

Even greater than the dollar value, though, is the potential to make a positive long-term difference to the program's participants.

"With this amount of individualized attention, we can provide an organization 'jump start' to growing companies and then prepare them for their ongoing needs in accounting and finance," McCune said.

Rehmann will provide a variety of services, including initial general ledger development, implementation of accounting systems (including software such as QuickBooks), development of budgets and forecasting tools, assistance with applicable tax and governmental regulations and preparation for bank financing requests and/or equity investments.

"The addition of Rehmann to the $8 billion Pure Michigan Business Connect program is significant because it will provide a necessary, but often expensive, service to many start-up and early stage businesses at no cost," said MEDC President and CEO Michael A. Finney. "This is an impressive commitment and will further enhance our multi-faceted network of opportunities for Michigan businesses."

Companies seeking support can tap into Pure Michigan Business Connect's network at http://www.michiganadvantage.org/Business- Connect/. Fill in a brief form, requesting services such as accounting, and then the MEDC in partnership with the Michigan Small Business & Technology Development Center match the request with firms such as Rehmann.

In Rehmann, they'll find an energetic, committed partner.

"As a Michigan-based company ourselves, we're thrilled for the opportunity to help other Michigan companies reach their full potential," said Rehmann Chairman and CEO Steve Kelly, CPA. "We're very sincere about our commitment to delivering business wisdom and this effort is the perfect venue for doing just that."

Meet The Rehmann Team

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