Monday, December 21, 2009

Ex-Perrgio CEO Mike Jandernoa launching mentorship venture

Former Perrigo Co. Chairman and CEO Mike Jandernoa is turning his attention to supporting entrepreneurs.

He has formed Jandernoa Entrepreneurial Mentoring in Grand Rapids “to help successful entrepreneurs take their businesses to the next level.”

“JEM will help strengthen the great businesses that we already have here and in turn build our West Michigan economy,” Jandernoa said. “JEM’s goal is to help the CEOs running these businesses to grow even stronger and faster.”

Jandernoa, co-founder of Bridge Street Capital Management in Grand Rapids, plans to step down from some of the community and civic boards where he serves so he can dedicate the time needed to launch JEM. He and his wife, Sue, plan to provide a $100,000 startup grant and development support to the venture.

Jandernoa hopes to eventually have 36 active mentors matched with entrepreneurs in West Michigan for a three-year period.

Jandernoa Entrepreneurial Mentoring’s LinkedIn page says its “seasoned business mentors have been the primary decision makers for companies that have annual revenues of $5 million or more. We have well over 200 years of experience leading people in business to see success, innovation and sustainability throughout the years.”

Participating entrepreneurs will have to contribute $3,500 a year for the support of a mentor and their companies must have $1 million in annual revenues and a minimum of five employees.

Recruited from the business leadership in West Michigan, mentors will “act as a coach, sounding board, and/or resource for problem-solving,” states a news release from Jandernoa Entrepreneurial Mentoring.

“The entrepreneurial spirit is alive in West Michigan,” said Sue Jandernoa, a former public and private school teacher. “It just needs better connections and communication in this complex, global world of business.”

JEM plans to start by qualifying mentors, implementing training, and creating a model of standards and communication. The new company also needs to outline criteria and an application process for entrepreneurs who want a mentor.

Jandernoa will model the venture after the Kansas City, Mo.-based Helzberg Entrepreneurial Mentoring Program.

Interested mentors/mentees can request additional information by contacting