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Detroit's SenSound wins Michigan Pre-Seed Fund capital

Michigan Pre-Seed Capital Fund sees some promise in TechTown-based SenSound, investing $250,000 into the start-up.

The main product from SenSound, a spin-off of Wayne State College of Engineering, is a new technology that allows engineers to see sound. The idea is to detect defects in products before they reach the market. Those products can be in just about any industry, ranging from automotive to wind turbines to biotech products.

"Anything that moves that needs to be quieter or needs quality control is our market," says Sergio Mazza, founder of SenSound.

The money will be used for further product development and marketing efforts, such as trade show displays, brochures or travel expenses. It's also going to use the money to expand its market reach into other markets in developing countries.

"It's really about investing in our product beyond product development," Mazza says.

SenSound was founded in early 2004 and has grown to eight employees and an intern. It sells its products in Japan, China and India. The company plans to hire more people in the future, but not until 2010. It may add staff by elevating an intern into a full-time employee this year, but is planning to expand its payroll next year.

SenSound was one of three Michigan start-ups choosen to partake in the latest round capital investments. Firms from Ann Arbor and West Michigan also received funding. So far 30 companies have received funding through the Michigan Pre-Seed Capital Fund, a collaborative effort of Michiganís 12 SmartZones incubators, like TechTown and Ann Arbor SPARK, to fund fledgling start-ups.

Source: Sergio Mazza, founder of SenSound and Ann Arbor SPARK
Writer: Jon Zemke
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