Michigan Academy for the Development of Entrepreneurs Launched by U-M to Encourage Entrepreneurship in Developing Economies

By December 8, 2017

The Samuel Zell & Robert H. Lurie Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies, in partnership with the William Davidson Institute and Aparajitha Foundations, announced yesterday the launch of the Michigan Academy for the Development of Entrepreneurs (MADE), a nonprofit institute that works with entrepreneurship development organizations (EDOs) in developing countries to give those running businesses within these environments the knowledge and skills to flourish.  

Entrepreneurs and small business owners are essential to encourage growth in developing countries, creating a vibrant, sustainable business climate. However, ensuring they have all the support they need to be successful can be challenging. That’s where MADE comes in.

MADE collects the practical lessons learned from partner organizations from across the globe along with networks created from years of University of Michigan startup consultancy projects in economies like India, Vietnam, Kosovo and Morocco. Using this wealth of knowledge and resources, the organization provides assistance to entrepreneurs faced with important decisions that help shape their companies into a positive direction.

michigan entrepreneur

Stewart Thornhill

“Whether they’re in Silicon Valley or Africa, entrepreneurs bring the energy and vitality that every economy needs to succeed, and the Zell Lurie Institute is committed to supporting them wherever they may be–but what works for a startup in one part of the world doesn’t necessarily work for others,” said Stewart Thornhill, executive director of the Zell Lurie Institute.

In addition to this new, successful serial entrepreneur Mike Pape has been named Executive Director for MADE. In this role, Pape will provide leadership to a team of MBA students, who will not only be working on projects but will play a crucial role, helping to run MADE, with Pape providing the continuity from year to year.

Mike Pape

Mike Pape

Pape has a long history working within the Midwest and the startup community across the US. He co-founded several life sciences companies, including Esperion Therapeutics, which was acquired by Pfizer for $1.3 billion in 2004; Akebia Therapeutics, which successfully IPOed in 2014; Orchard Venture Partners, a life science venture capital firm; and Nymirum, a drug discovery firm based in North Carolina.

Before his days of being an entrepreneur, Pape played a pivotal role in the success of numerous cardiovascular drug discovery and development programs, including Lipitor at Upjohn and Parke-Davis/Warner-Lambert (now Pfizer). He is also a University of Chicago graduate and holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan.

“I know firsthand the challenges entrepreneurs face in getting their ventures off the ground—and I know how valuable their contributions are both as a vehicle for innovation and as a participant in the local economy,” said Pape.

“I’m looking forward to working with the full breadth of resources the University of Michigan has to offer—from the MBAs who will be managing all of MADE’s operations and the alumni worldwide who will serve as coaches and local resources to the knowledge resource and institutes housed here. We have the ability to create some really great outcomes, and we’re all looking forward to the challenges ahead,” he adds.