Photo courtesy of MEDC

August 5, 2020: Kathleen Achtenberg, Michigan Economic Development Corporation

LANSING, Mich. – Michigan continues to demonstrate its leadership in the mobility and autonomous vehicles sector as May Mobility, a global developer of autonomous shuttles, announced plans to expand in Ann Arbor with support from the Michigan Strategic Fund, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation announced today. The project is expected to create 100 high-paying, high-tech jobs.

“May Mobility’s expansion creates significant well-paying jobs for Michigan residents and underscores the strength of the talent in the state’s mobility and technology sectors,” said MEDC CEO Mark A. Burton. “We have worked closely with May Mobility on key deployments across the state as the company has continued to thrive in Michigan. This latest investment reinforces Michigan’s reputation as the center for the automotive industry and a leader in future automotive technology, and we’re pleased to work with our local partners to support the expansion.”

May Mobility, Inc. , founded in 2017 and headquartered in Ann Arbor, is reimagining transportation by deploying autonomous shuttles to help people get where they need to go safely, easily and with a lot more fun. The company operates in several cities across the U.S. including Detroit and Grand Rapids, by partnering with enterprises and municipalities to offer transportation services through their turnkey shuttle services. May Mobility’s shuttles complement public transportation by moving people between high-value points of interest within urban centers.

May Mobility is looking to expand all aspects of its services, including enhancements to its Autonomous Vehicle (AV) shuttle fleet, a project that will generate a total private investment of $11.8 million and create 100 high-wage engineering and tech jobs in Ann Arbor. Today, the Michigan Strategic Fund awarded the company a $700,000 Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant in support of the project.

“With the support of the MEDC, May Mobility is able to grow our team during a crucial time in the race to develop safe, reliable autonomous technologies as we work to improve access to mobility solutions in cities across the country,” said May Mobility Founder and CEO Edwin Olson. “We are excited to work with MEDC to help make Southeast Michigan not only a great place for the auto industry, but also a leader in autonomy.”

This planned growth aligns with several of MEDC’s strategic focus areas, including supporting a business in the target industry of mobility and fostering high-wage job growth. Ann Arbor SPARK has offered to assist the company in finding candidates for the new positions. For information on careers with May Mobility, visit https://boards.greenhouse.io/maymobility .

“Ann Arbor continues to attract leading mobility companies like May Mobility, proving that our region can serve as a living laboratory to test, validate and commercialize new technologies by delivering the resources those companies need to accelerate their growth,” said Ann Arbor SPARK President and CEO Paul Krutko. “The SPARK team is excited to help May Mobility find the talent they need to continue to push their success forward and deepen their roots in Ann Arbor.”

In July 2019, MEDC’s mobility initiative teamed up with May Mobility, the city of Grand Rapids, and nine Michigan companies to form the Grand Rapids Autonomous Vehicle Initiative (AVGR). Coordinated by Seamless, an innovation platform in Grand Rapids, the initiative placed May Mobility autonomous vehicles on Grand Rapids’ city streets to demonstrate civic infrastructure and operational capabilities of the rapidly growing AV market. The coalition – a first of its kind – brings together enterprise and infrastructure to gather and analyze critical information with the goal of understanding the usage of autonomous vehicles in a city environment. The May Mobility fleet operates complementarily to the city of Grand Rapid’s existing DASH transportation fleet.

During the initial nine months of testing and deployment, May shuttles autonomously drove nearly 14,000 miles on the streets of Grand Rapids. The service is set to resume this fall with enhanced features for sanitation and rider safety.

Today’s announcement also builds on the launch last month of the Office of Future Mobility and Electrification (OFME), reaffirming Michigan’s position as the global leader in producing and developing the next generation of transportation technologies. The new office is working across state government, academia, and private industry to enhance Michigan’s mobility ecosystem, including developing dynamic mobility and electrification policies and supporting the startup and scale-up of emerging technologies and businesses.

“Michigan has a highly collaborative environment between its public and private sectors. This allows us to consistently pair next-generation technologies with government efforts to prioritize the safety and inclusion of all Michigan residents as we improve transportation services in our cities,” said Trevor Pawl, chief mobility officer with the Office of Future Mobility. “We’re pleased to work together with May Mobility in supporting projects that have meaningful impact and create a better quality of life for our residents. We look forward to working with the company as it continues to develop advanced mobility vehicles and technologies.”