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Business Leaders for Michigan is an organization dedicated to making Michigan a "Top Ten" state for jobs, personal income and a healthy economy. Serving as the state's business roundtable, Business Leaders for Michigan is composed of the chairpersons, chief executives or most senior executives of the state’s largest job providers and universities. Read more...

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Business Leaders for Michigan Report shows Michigan local governments are collaborating, more can be done

LANSING, Mich., November 12, 2013 — Regional leaders in Michigan have been pursuing collaboration for some time and will have more opportunities to enhance collaboration in the years ahead, according to a report released today by Business Leaders for Michigan (BLM) looking at local government collaboration efforts in Michigan.

“More than two-thirds of Michigan voters support providing more funding to units of government that work together by merging services and prioritizing state funding to regions of the state that show they can work together,” said Doug Rothwell, BLM President & CEO. “Efforts implemented by the Governor and Legislature over the last few years, such as the Economic Vitality Incentive Program and the Regional Prosperity Initiative recognize the need to incentivize collaboration.”

Key findings of the Business Leaders’ Insights: Local Government Collaboration in Michigan report:

  • Local governments in Michigan are pursuing collaboration as a way to spur economic development and to address the competing pressures of lower revenues and increasing costs
  • Regional collaboration is already underway between many local governments in Michigan with benefits ranging from improved marketing and promotion of regional assets to significant cost savings
  • New laws designed to make collaboration even more attractive haven’t been in place long enough to know whether they will accelerate collaboration, but public support for increased collaboration is strong

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Playing to Win

At Business Leaders for Michigan, we believe in basing actions on facts – not just what we think. That means we have to know how Michigan stacks up to our competitors to reach our goal of making Michigan a Top Ten state again. 

Last week, we issued the 4th edition of our Economic Competitiveness Benchmarking Report showing where Michigan’s competitive and where we’re not.  Strengths that we can build on include a greatly improved tax and regulatory climate and a more efficient government that is working better and more collaboratively than in the past.

Look at how we stack up to Top performing states on measures of innovation - we produce 30% more patents, our universities generate about 30% more research and development, and the value of our exports is 50% more than Top Ten states. Our capacity to innovate positions us well to meet more of what the world needs – a key characteristic of Top Ten states.

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Business Leaders Forecast: MI Will Grow Faster Than U.S. in Long-Term 

Short-term growth slowing

DETROIT, Mich., October 15, 2013 – Business Leaders for Michigan (BLM), the state’s business roundtable, continues to forecast that Michigan’s economy will grow faster than the U.S. economy over the next eighteen months.  However, business leaders believe both America’s and Michigan’s growth over the next six months will be slower due to lower global demand and domestic financial uncertainty. 

“Michigan’s business leaders continue to believe that Michigan will out-perform the national economy over the next year and a half by a significant margin,” said Doug Rothwell, BLM President and CEO. “Their more pessimistic short-term outlook reflects continued sluggishness in major export markets and a lack of federal action on interest rate, debt and tax policies.  The belief is that over the long-term global growth will return and some federal issues will get resolved.  Once those things happen, Michigan will benefit disproportionately because we’re a big export state.”

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Business Leaders Forecast: MI will continue to grow faster than U.S. over next 18 months

Over half of state’s largest employers will be adding jobs in Michigan

 DETROIT, Mich., August 1, 2013 – Business Leaders for Michigan (BLM), the state’s business roundtable, continues to forecast that Michigan’s economy will grow faster than the U.S. economy over the next six to eighteen months.  The forecast is reinforced by 52 percent of BLM members planning to increase hiring in Michigan in just the next six months. 

“Michigan’s business leaders continue believe Michigan will out-perform the national economy over the next year and a half,” said Doug Rothwell, President & CEO. “The outlook has moderated as the global economy has slowed over the past six months, but the state’s top business executives continue to show confidence in Michigan as over half plan to increase hiring in the next six months.”

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New study affirms MI is a key player in logistics industry

Highlights existing strengths in air transport, importance of trade with Canada and need for investment in infrastructure

DETROIT, Mich., September 12, 2012 — According to a study commissioned by Business Leaders for Michigan (BLM), Michigan can grow its position as a logistics gateway by accelerating efforts to support and maintain its logistics base, increasing investments in infrastructure that support global product movement and identifying niche industry sectors to build upon.

“This study helped identify strategic priorities that would enhance Michigan’s ability to compete as a logistics center.  It reaffirms that Michigan has numerous opportunities to grow its economy by exploiting its position as a global gateway and by investing in infrastructure that will improve product movement  - especially with Canada, our number one trade partner, but also Europe and Asia,” said Doug Rothwell, President and CEO, Business Leaders for Michigan.  “Michigan’s proximity to Canada provides an advantage over Midwest competitors.  By increasing the capacity and reliability of transport in southeast Michigan, particularly by further developing the airport and building a new international border crossing, we can help protect this existing industry base.” 

Download the full press release.   Download the full study.