Helping small businesses grow.

  • Start
  • >
  • WMed Innovation Center


WMed Innovation Center

The WMed Innovation Center is the place to start and grow life science, technology, or engineering ventures.

Life science, technology, and engineering companies depend upon robust systems, services and expertise. The Innovation Center delivers on all fronts. The 69,000-square-foot, purpose-built incubator and co-working space was created to support the earliest startups to maturing companies with subsidized, low-cost laboratory, office and conference space, high quality scientific equipment and expertise, and a wide range of support services.

Since its inception the Innovation Center has established a track record of positive impact in Southwest Michigan and elsewhere. Achievements include:

  • 2 incubation awards: Innovation of the Year and Graduate of the Year
  • 174 jobs created by companies served with an average salary of $69,898
  • $8.2 million in state funds awarded to companied served
  • $44.3 million in federal SBIR/STTR funds awarded to companies served
  • $127.5 million in total angel and VC funds invested in companies served
  • 169 patents applied for
  • 66 patents issued

Business Support

  • On-site business and financial counseling, along with access to financial, legal and communication services.
  • Business equipment, including overhead projectors and high-speed color copier
  • Business services, including free high-speed Internet, shared conference rooms, mail and package handling, reception,
  • Entrepreneurial services, including business plan assistance, introductions to investors, management team recruitment advice, monthly lunch-and-learns, SBIR training classes, customer discovery workshops, and more.


The Innovation Center offers 58,000 sq. ft. of purpose-built wet-lab space—72 individual labs in all—plus 11,000 square feet of conference rooms, offices and common areas. WMed Innovation Center is located in a state-designated SmartZone, which provides 100% personal property tax exemption.

Scientific Support

What makes the Innovation Center unique among incubators/accelerators is its depth of scientific and business counsel. Innovation Center clients use collaborative environment to share insights and advance their science. In addition to on-site scientific equipment, clients can easily access local resources, including two vivariums, mass spec analytical services, quantitative bioanalytical analysis services, and scientific consulting.

Contact Information

  • WMed Innovation Center
    4717 Campus Dr
    Kalamazoo, MI 49008
  • Sandra Cochrane
  • Assistant Dean, Director of the Innovation Center
  • (269) 372-8739

Sponsored by the City of South Haven, South Haven Chamber of Commerce, and Lake Michigan College.

Congratulations to Gregory Shelton of Grand Unique Laundry for receiving his first loan through Northern Initiatives. With help from his SCORE mentor, Cheri Bales, Gregory did a fantastic job on developing his business plan and showing real entrepreneurial spirit. We wish you much success, and look forward to your upward movement. You are a wonderful role model.

—Gregory Shelton of Grand Unique Laundry

I appreciate your ears for listening, your eyes that see my vision and your heart that makes you who you are.  I thank you for your time. You are making a difference.

—Shawntel Lindsey, Director, The Artbor Community Connections Center

The WMed Innovation Center is a perfect environment for innovation to grow and become a successful commercial enterprise.


WMU Business Connection logo

Whether you are seeking a research partner or want to enlist the help of student groups in developing business plans, or just looking for ways to engage with WMU, the Business Connection office can find the resource to help move your business forward.


A loan (from Local Initiatives Support Corporation) helped expand our cafe to triple our seating, add a kids space, increase much needed staff work areas, and make other improvements to the space.


MEL logo

The Michigan eLibrary (MeL) is the State of Michigan’s digital library. It has excellent resources available to Michigan residents at no cost.


Western Michigan University’s Starting Gate helped me take an idea and transform it into a much more attainable reality. Whether providing talks with investors and business owners or accountability, the ultimate goal is helping your business succeed.

—Peter Shutt

Kalamazoo County Land Bank logo

The Kalamazoo Land Bank did robust community engagement around the vision and gave us something to work with that was solidly desired by people in the neighborhood. Having a vision meant we had to protect it. That’s something I thank the Land Bank for. It was difficult. It didn’t make anything faster or easier, but we got a better project in the end as a result of it.

—Matt Hollander

Buy Local logo

Buy Local Greater Kalamazoo is a hard working grassroots group focused on the greater Kalamazoo community and its small businesses. Their events and networking opportunities are the best!

—Cheri Bales

SBDC logo

Michigan SBDC is a great company providing top notch service to local businesses all over Michigan. The consultants are professional and the student workers contribute with excellent work!

—Martin Herman Sorensen