Deep dive into DRP’s Digital Tech industry cluster


CLUSTER INTRO: The Detroit Regional Partnership’s (DRP) seven-industry cluster program received the C2ER Research Award for Project Impact in its first year. In keeping with current industry trends, data for each cluster is being updated and re-launched on the DRP website. As a result, the Detroit Region continues to be a growing hub for Digital Technology; Software Development, Systems Design, and Data Storage. The DRP’s robust research provides the storytelling framework for the regional tech eco-system, talent and education. Here’s a peek at the latest findings. 

TECH TALENT: The Detroit Region consistently is being recognized as a top tech hub with a vibrant, collaborative ecosystem and leading talent that supports innovative startups to large tech operations. As of 2021, there’s more than 190,000 tech workers in the region, consisting of more than 28,000 software developers and 30,000 computer specialists/analysts. Not only is there a large tech talent pool, it ranks as one of the best for quality and diverse tech talent. The Detroit MSA ranks #3 best in the U.S. for tech talent quality vs. cost in 2020 by CBRE. As well as, ranking #2 best metro for tech talent diversity in 2020 by CompTIA. 

TECH EDUCATION: There’s many higher education institutions and collaborations between emerging tech industries for talent in the region. There are more than 7,300 completions annually (degrees and certificates) that’s technology and engineering related in the region. One of those innovative collaborations opened in Fall of 2021, Apple partnered with Michigan State University (MSU) to open its first U.S. Apple Developer Academy in downtown Detroit which will teach app development to 1,000 students by offering free of tuition.

TECH ECOSYSTEM: Michigan ranks as a top location for high-growth startups, #1 state for VC investment growth at 886% from 2016-2020 by Crunchbase. This has fueled how the region now has four unicorn companies, Michigan is only one of 10states that has more than one unicorn company, according to CB Insights 2021. As well as growing the collaborative and robust ecosystem in the region, there are various unique accelerators, incubators, associations, organizations, and partnerships that’s occurring. One is DRP’s tech ambassador program, that has identified more than 190 regional tech assets

“Detroit is helping to redefine the future of business, innovation, and culture. It offers unparalleled access to a vibrant community, infrastructure, diverse talent, and resources to fuel everyone from emerging startups to large-scale operations.” ”‹ – Detroit Labs, Creative Director, David Klawitter”‹ 

CASE STUDY – SAVOMETRICS: Canadian-based Ag-Tech Startup, Savormetrics launched an R&D & Sales Operation in Southfield, their first location in the U.S. creating more than 115 jobs. The Detroit Region was selected over competing sites because of the market size, business & industry partners, talent, local support and resources provided. ”‹DRP’s work with local partners at the Centrepolis Accelerator ultimately landed the company here. ”‹ 

“We needed a location that offered access to high quality technical talent, a strong customer base, and a collaborative ecosystem, and found that in the Detroit Region.” ”‹ – Harjeet Bajaj, CEO & Founder of Savormetrics”‹ 

CASE STUDY – AMAZON TECH HUB: Tech hub expanded to the Detroit Region in 2020 with an additional 100 high-skilled tech jobs. The region was one of six locations selected for $1.5 billion total investment. 

“We are focused on hiring in the state and look forward to being a part of the community, professionally and personally. Michigan is a rapidly growing technology corridor and we’re eager to bring the incredible local Detroit talent to Amazon.” – Peter Faricy, Vice President for Amazon Marketplace”‹ 


About the Detroit Regional Partnership
The Detroit Regional Partnership is a public-private economic development partnership focused on marketing and business attraction for the 11-county Detroit Region. It serves as a convenient single point of contact to all regional resources and works with companies and site selectors to help manage their projects and support their transition into the region. It specializes in helping companies understand and access the competitive advantages of our region – from workforce data to state and local incentives. Visit to learn more.

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