LTU Accelerator part of National Manufacturing Day pitch event

SOUTHFIELD—The Centrepolis Accelerator, the manufacturing business accelerator operated by Lawrence Technological University and the city of Southfield, is hosting a National Manufacturing Day Virtual Pitch Event on Friday, Oct. 2.

The event is produced in cooperation with Pure Michigan Business Connect, the Michigan Economic Development Corp., Automation Alley, and the Jackson business accelerator Lean Rocket Lab. Sponsors include Consumers Energy, the Hurst Foundation, Jaffe Law, and the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE).

The event will run from 2 to 5 p.m. and will feature select manufacturing technology startups. Sectors represented include Industry 4.0, manufacturing technology, cleantech and hardware.

Judges for the event will be Josh Berg, director of innovation ventures, corporate engineering, and R&D, Magna International; Prem Bogadala, director of Red Cedar Ventures and the Michigan Rise Pre-Seed III Fund; Karl Henn, director of Lear Corp. seating system product technology and innovation; Robert Jackson, EGLE assistant division director for materials management; Patti Poppe, president and CEO of EMS Energy and Consumers Energy; Anita Maria Quillen, president and CEO, Diversified Engineering & Plastics; David Shirkey, manager of strategic initiatives and investments at Orbitform, a Jackson manufacturer; and Ryan Waddington, founder and general partner of Huron River Ventures.

Prizes for the event include $10,000 for the best manufacturing technology company, sponsored by Lean Rocket Lab; $10,000 for the best cleantech hardware company, sponsored by EGLE and the Centrepolis Accelerator; $10,000 for the best Industry 4.0 technology company, sponsored by Automation Alley; and a $5,000 People’s Choice Award granted through an audience vote, sponsored by Jaffe Law.

To register for the event, visit

Lawrence Technological University,, is a private university founded in 1932 that offers more than 100 programs through the doctoral level in its Colleges of Architecture and Design, Arts and Sciences, Business and Information Technology, and Engineering. PayScale lists Lawrence Tech among the nation’s top 11 percent of universities for the salaries of its graduates, and U.S. News and World Report lists it in the top tier of best Midwestern universities. Students benefit from small class sizes and a real-world, hands-on, “theory and practice” education with an emphasis on leadership. Activities on Lawrence Tech’s 107-acre campus include more than 60 student organizations and NAIA varsity sports.

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