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Sunday, 29 March 2020 17:30

Employers take varied approaches to labor issues amid COVID-19

Many businesses are grappling with labor issues amid a stay-home order issued by Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer to help curb the spread of COVID-19.

Friday, 27 March 2020 08:23

Battle Creek Unlimited doubles loan fund for businesses affected by COVID-19

BATTLE CREEK — The city of Battle Creek’s economic development agency has doubled its emergency loan fund to $1 million as more small businesses are impacted by the coronavirus. 

Friday, 20 March 2020 15:25

Michigan unemployment claims continue to spike

Unemployment claims in Michigan have increased 1,500 percent following the widespread closure of food and entertainment businesses to help stop the spread of the coronavirus.


Friday, 20 March 2020 05:00

Spectrum Health collecting protective equipment to sustain supply

GRAND RAPIDS — Spectrum Health is seeking items like face masks and hand sanitizer in light of a national shortage of personal protective equipment for hospital workers and patients due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Thursday, 19 March 2020 15:04

Battle Creek Unlimited creates small business emergency fund

BATTLE CREEK — Battle Creek Unlimited Inc., the economic development arm for the city of Battle Creek, has established a $500,000 emergency small business loan fund in the wake of COVID-19.

Thursday, 19 March 2020 10:46

Michigan unemployment claims rise 550% after widespread closures

Michigan unemployment claims have increased 550 percent since the state ordered service industry businesses to largely close down to help stop the spread of the coronavirus.


Wednesday, 18 March 2020 05:03

Marijuana businesses expedite curbside pickup, delivery after state issues temporary rules

Medical and recreational marijuana businesses are determining how to deliver cannabis to customers after the state’s regulatory agency issued temporary rules to combat the spread of the coronavirus.

Sunday, 15 March 2020 19:10

Status quo: GR debates increasing sites for marijuana businesses; equity, local ownership concerns remain

GRAND RAPIDS — Following mixed messages from the Grand Rapids City Commission late last month, marijuana advocates hope city officials will ultimately open more properties for medical and recreational facilities.

Friday, 13 March 2020 16:55

Local bars, restaurants take precautions against coronavirus

GRAND RAPIDS — Restaurants and breweries across West Michigan are taking precautions to protect employees and patrons from coronavirus. 


Sunday, 15 March 2020 15:00

Employers must communicate with workers about coronavirus policies

Leigh Schultz, a senior principal attorney in the Kalamazoo office of Miller Canfield Paddock and Stone PLC, has been fielding calls from her clients about what action they need to take regarding COVID-19, commonly known as coronavirus.

Sunday, 01 March 2020 16:30

Local outdoor retailers find success in niche market

Retailers serving the outdoor recreation niche say focusing on that specialty has helped them remain viable operations in West Michigan.

Sunday, 01 March 2020 16:10

Groups work to build diversity, inclusion into outdoor recreation efforts

Some Grand Rapids residents have never stepped foot in the Grand River. In fact, a very small population of people currently use the river to recreate.


Sunday, 01 March 2020 11:45

Q&A: Dr. Laurel Ofstein Associate Professor, Western Michigan University

Women entrepreneurs face significant challenges in growing their companies, but there are ways to improve the business environment to make it better. That’s the central theme of a study released by Bank of America and Babson College that identified what entrepreneurs can learn from industry-leading women business owners.

Friday, 14 February 2020 10:42

GR Planning Commission approves recreational marijuana regulations

GRAND RAPIDS — Recreational marijuana sales in Grand Rapids are one step closer to reality.

Sunday, 16 February 2020 16:30

West Michigan communities leverage outdoor recreation in placemaking

Muskegon County officials are hoping the possible purchase of 377 acres of private land will increase the quality of life and help with talent attraction.


Sunday, 16 February 2020 11:00

Q&A: Christina Keller President & CEO, Cascade Engineering Inc.

Christina Keller has led family-owned plastic-injection molding manufacturer Cascade Engineering Inc. since 2018. Keller recently spoke at an event focused on women’s leadership and increasing opportunities for women and others in the West Michigan workforce, and detailed the efforts Cascade Engineering has taken to increase diversity and foster an inclusive working environment. A 10-year veteran of Cascade Engineering, Keller spoke with MiBiz about why being inclusive is important for West Michigan businesses that want to keep growing. 

Wednesday, 05 February 2020 12:31

The Right Place to prioritize wage growth, inclusion in new 3-year plan

GRAND RAPIDS — Regional economic development firm The Right Place Inc. will focus on new areas of economic opportunity over the next three years.

Friday, 24 January 2020 11:59

Grand Rapids postpones recreational marijuana to discuss separation requirements, data

GRAND RAPIDS — The Grand Rapids Planning Commission postponed talks about allowing recreational marijuana businesses in the city to hold more discussion on separation requirements and other aspects of the ordinance.


Sunday, 22 December 2019 15:34

Marijuana Outlook: Marijuana work will continue in 2020 with recreational, medical projects

Companies working in the marijuana industry are expecting a busy year in 2020, as more licensed businesses open and additional communities begin regulating recreational operations. 

Sunday, 22 December 2019 18:05

GR Chamber to bolster diversity and inclusion programming in new year

The Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce continues to seek out ways to address the persistent talent issues that local companies are facing. Rick Baker, president and CEO of the Grand Rapids Chamber, said the organization is advocating for ways to attract talent at the local and state levels, including by expanding programming in 2020. 

Sunday, 22 December 2019 18:12

Holland Mayor prioritizes housing, waterfront development, expanding anti-discrimination ordinance

After unseating the two-term incumbent in the November election, Holland Mayor Nathan Bocks got right to work after being sworn into office. Holland is in the midst of several large projects, including brainstorming the framework that will inform the development of its waterfront, increasing affordable housing in the region, considering an anti-discrimination ordinance and rewriting its zoning. All of these projects will move along in 2020, as Bocks and city officials also keep an eye on the economy.


Thursday, 19 December 2019 16:51

Van Andel Research Institute to pay $5.5 million for failure to disclose foreign grants

GRAND RAPIDS — The Van Andel Research Institute (VARI) has agreed to pay $5.5 million to resolve allegations that it failed to disclose on federal grant applications that Chinese government grants that funded two of its researchers, the U.S. Department of Justice announced Thursday.

Sunday, 22 December 2019 10:22

Diversity advocate aims to continue beverage industry conversations in 2020

After a deposition leaked in the racial discrimination lawsuit filed against Grand Rapids-based Founders Brewing Co., the brewery again made national headlines when Graci Harkema, its diversity and inclusion director, publicly resigned after less than a year in the position. Founders went on to settle the lawsuit, although the case has remained a topic of conversation in the craft beer industry. Meanwhile, Harkema has started her own business, Graci LLC, to focus on sharing diversity and inclusion best practices within the adult beverage industry.

Tuesday, 10 December 2019 17:06

Wolverine agrees to $69.5 million PFAS settlement with Plainfield, Algoma townships

Plainfield and Algoma townships have reached a tentative $69.5 million settlement in the case filed by the state of Michigan against Rockford-based Wolverine World Wide Inc. over PFAS contamination.


Sunday, 24 November 2019 19:55

Slashing MEDC budget could stall local projects, economic developers warn

GRAND RAPIDS — As the state Legislature continues budget talks, West Michigan economic development executives remain concerned about a $26 million cut to the Michigan Economic Development Corp. budget.

Sunday, 24 November 2019 10:15

Q&A: Bob Davies President, Central Michigan University

Just more than a year into his presidency at Central Michigan University, Bob Davies has embarked on an ambitious 10-year strategic plan that outlines the vision for where the school needs to be by 2030. He said he initiated the effort in response to challenges CMU and other universities face in the current social, political and economic landscape. Davies sat down with MiBiz to talk about his time with the university thus far, how its students fit into the workforce and his goals for the future sustainability of CMU.

Sunday, 10 November 2019 17:00

PRICE TO PAY: In crises, companies seek delicate balance of legal, PR, consumer ramifications

popular Grand Rapids brewery learned the hard way that focusing on winning a lawsuit can cost a company in other tangible ways if it loses first in the court of public opinion. 


Sunday, 27 October 2019 18:00

GR City Manager takes measured steps amid recent executive departures

GRAND RAPIDS — Faced with multiple departures from leadership positions at the city of Grand Rapids, City Manager Mark Washington wants to avoid being “hasty” about hiring replacements.

Sunday, 27 October 2019 17:30

Local tourism groups advocate for maintaining Pure Michigan funding

HOLLAND — Last year, travelers from all 50 states and 47 countries stopped into the Holland Area Visitors Bureau while visiting the city. 

Friday, 25 October 2019 09:14

Anna’s House voluntarily dismisses lawsuit against Meritage Hospitality

GRAND RAPIDS — The owner of Anna’s House restaurant has voluntarily dismissed its lawsuit against the Meritage Hospitality Group over its newly-opened Morning Belle restaurant.


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