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John Wiegand

John Wiegand

Staff writer

[email protected]

Sunday, 02 October 2016 13:24

Herman Miller alleges Canadian firm unlawfully sold knock-off Eames products

ZEELAND — In a new lawsuit, a West Michigan office furniture manufacturer accuses a Canadian company of producing and selling knock offs of one of the industry’s iconic designs. 

Thursday, 22 September 2016 14:03

North American market continues to buoy sales for Herman Miller

Despite soft sales in the beginning of its first quarter, Herman Miller Inc. reported modest sales growth over the previous year, driven primarily by an improving North American market.

Thursday, 22 September 2016 14:00

Weak orders drive down earnings for Steelcase in Q2 2017

Declining order volumes hampered revenues for office furniture maker Steelcase Inc. in its second quarter of its 2017 fiscal year, which ended Aug. 26, 2016.


Sunday, 18 September 2016 16:35

New legislation could alleviate taxes, update antiquated laws for craft distilleries

When Bill Welter was searching for a location to start a distillery in 2010, he chose a site in Three Oaks, Mich. over his home state of Indiana.

Sunday, 18 September 2016 16:17

Toefco looks to double business with $3M paint line expansion

NILES — One Southwest Michigan supplier of industrial coatings aims to double the size of its organization through a new expansion project.

Sunday, 18 September 2016 16:15

Going Plush: West Michigan suppliers eye opportunities as automakers push upscale interiors

As automakers have invested in high-profile technologies and lightweighting, they’ve also started to pay more attention to the place in their vehicles where drivers spend the most time: the interiors. 


Sunday, 18 September 2016 13:44

Department of Agriculture to lead trade mission to China

Twelve Michigan food processing and agriculture companies will travel to Shanghai and Shenzhen, China next month on a trade mission with the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development

Sunday, 18 September 2016 13:28

West Michigan employers brace for new OT regs

Anew ruling aimed at giving more salaried workers access to overtime pay may have negative consequences for West Michigan companies and could ultimately end up hurting workers, despite the best of intentions. 

Wednesday, 14 September 2016 17:50

Rep. Hooker’s proposed tax hike falls flat with craft brewers

A new bill proposed in the Michigan Legislature could more than triple the state’s excise tax on beer.


Wednesday, 14 September 2016 15:08

Burr Oak Tool enters strategic partnership with Italian firm

Burr Oak Tool Inc. has entered a strategic partnership with Sistemi Meccanici Industriali, of Udine, Italy.

Sunday, 11 September 2016 20:00

Co-founders put organic Groundswell Community Farm up for sale

After more than a decade of operation, one of West Michigan’s first organic farms could soon have new owners.

Sunday, 04 September 2016 03:02

Q&A: Mark Nettleton, Chair of the Public Corporation Law Section of the State Bar of Michigan Attorney, Mika Meyers PLC

Mika Meyers PLC attorney Mark Nettleton has been appointed to a one-year term as the chair of the Public Corporation Law Section of the State Bar of Michigan. In this position, Nettleton will lead the 600-member group that includes attorneys who represent municipalities, townships and other government bodies, and the various boards and public authorities established by those entities. The Public Corporation Law Section informs its members on important changes to the law and other developments that could affect their clients. The group also advocates for municipalities in the state Court of Appeals, Michigan Supreme Court and on the federal level. In his own practice at Mika Meyers in Grand Rapids, Nettleton focuses on public finance law and general representation for municipalities. He spoke with MiBiz about his new role and pending headwinds faced by municipalities. 


Sunday, 04 September 2016 02:44

Muskegon firm takes on invasive aquatic species via genetic testing

MUSKEGON — A scientist-turned-entrepreneur hopes to commercialize technology that will map and provide a specific treatment plan for invasive aquatic plant species based on their genetic profile. 

Sunday, 04 September 2016 02:38

Q&A: Christina Keller, President, Cascade Business Team, Cascade Engineering

After three years leading CK Technologies LLC,  a manufacturer of heavy truck components, Christina Keller has been named president of the Cascade Business Team, a group of four businesses under Grand Rapids-based Cascade Engineering Inc. Now Keller will oversee Cascade Engineering’s Automotive Americas, Cascade Cart Solutions, Innovative Plastics Technologies and Noble Polymers groups, which span the automotive, recycling and plastic polymer industries. As she steps into her new position,  Keller spoke with MiBiz about her plans for those businesses and discussed the role of women in West Michigan’s manufacturing industry. 

Sunday, 04 September 2016 02:35

Dynamic Wood Solutions capitalizes on spike in multi-family housing

SPRING LAKE — The residential housing boom in downtown Grand Rapids has led one West Michigan manufacturer of commercial casework and other custom furniture to shift its focus. 


Sunday, 04 September 2016 02:31

Manufacturing base key to growing state’s forest products industry, experts say

While many pieces still need to be assembled, Michigan’s growing forest products industry remains on track to transform into a robust and sustainable market. 

Sunday, 04 September 2016 17:06

New business offers four-legged solutions for weed control — not pesticides

A new line of defense in the proverbial fight between man and weeds may be gaining traction among farmers and other business in West Michigan. But instead of being based on chemicals or other manmade products, this solution is much more back to nature. 

Tuesday, 30 August 2016 13:43

Pfizer to invest $146 million in Portage expansion

Global pharmaceutical giant Pfizer Inc. has taken the next step in its proposed $146 million expansion to its manufacturing facility in Southwest Michigan.


Wednesday, 24 August 2016 14:50

Lost contract spurs Direct Dialog to close GR-area call center; firm working with MEDC to repay grant

A call center operator says the loss of a key contract led to its decision to close its facility in the greater Grand Rapids area.

Tuesday, 23 August 2016 16:00

Dialog Direct to close Grand Rapids call center facility

Dialog Direct Inc. plans to shutter its Grand Rapids-area facility and lay off 106 employees by Oct. 17, according to documents filed with the state.

Friday, 19 August 2016 11:27

Indiana nursery buys Zelenka Farms in $15 million bankruptcy deal

Zelenka Farms has emerged from bankruptcy under new ownership and a new name.  


Sunday, 21 August 2016 14:37

Alternating proprietorships could alleviate capacity constraints for craft brewers

SAWYER — When Greenbush Brewery Co. needed to expand its production facility, co-owner Scott Sullivan faced a conundrum. 

Sunday, 21 August 2016 14:16

Pro-Vision eyes growth in body camera business with new law enforcement product

BYRON CENTER — As scrutiny over law enforcement agencies mounts in the wake of recent high-profile deadly force incidents, an increasing number of police departments have adopted body camera technology.

Sunday, 21 August 2016 14:11

Coalition seeks free tuition for advanced manufacturing community college students

GRAND RAPIDS — A statewide coalition of community colleges, including Grand Rapids Community College, is vying for federal grant dollars that would provide free tuition for students in key advanced manufacturing programs. 


Sunday, 21 August 2016 14:10

Suppliers find opportunity in gradual shift to EVs, autonomous technology

Lower fuel prices may have shifted consumers’ buying habits toward trucks and SUVs, but most automotive suppliers believe electric vehicle technology is here to stay. 

Sunday, 21 August 2016 14:08

Held back by lower incomes, millennials put off new car buying as price tags rise

To move beyond a looming sales plateau, automakers will need to appeal to the generation they’ve long-feared prefers car-sharing services and cycling to owning automobiles. 

Sunday, 21 August 2016 14:01

Cautious optimism continues as automotive industry evolves

The automotive industry rapidly approaches a convergence point. 


Sunday, 21 August 2016 13:54

Cruise Controlled? Auto suppliers debate investments as car sales begin to peak

West Michigan automotive suppliers have a lot on their plates as they prepare their businesses to be competitive in the coming years. 

Wednesday, 10 August 2016 20:00

Advanced manufacturing jobs continue to grow in Grand Rapids, albeit slower

Advanced industries continue to drive employment growth in Grand Rapids in the face of talent constraints.

Sunday, 07 August 2016 13:03

Kentwood testing firm helps med device makers meet federal packaging regs

KENTWOOD — As medical device manufacturers work to maintain compliance with ever-tightening federal regulations, one West Michigan consulting firm aims to make at least one part of the process easier. 


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