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Sunday, 09 November 2014 21:42

MiBiz Growth Report: Nov. 10, 2014

Written by  MiBiz Staff
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Here is the MiBiz Growth Report for Nov. 10, 2014:

• M&A: Just days after closing an acquisition for Northwestern Bancorp Inc. in Traverse City, Chemical Financial Corp. said it plans to buy Coldwater-based Monarch Community Bancorp Inc. The Midland-based Chemical Financial will pay about $26 million in stock for the parent company of Monarch Community Bank, which has five offices in Coldwater, Marshall, Hillsdale and Union City. Monarch Community Bank also has loan offices in Adrian, Battle Creek, Brighton, East Lansing, Grand Haven and Jackson, and just across the border in Angola, Ind. Under terms of the deal, Monarch Community Bancorp shareholders would each receive 0.0982 shares of Chemical Financial common stock for each share of their stock. The deal is expected to close in the first quarter of 2015, pending shareholder and regulatory approval. Monarch Community Bank had assets of $177 million, $136 million in loans and deposits of $144 million as of Sept. 30.

• M&A: MPI Research Inc., a pre-clinical testing lab in Mattawan, plans to expand into early-stage clinical studies with the acquisition of the assets of Jasper Clinical Research and Development Inc. in Kalamazoo. Jasper Clinical conducts Phase I human clinical trials of new drugs under development by pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. The deal includes Jasper’s 50-bed clinical trial unit on the downtown campus of Bronson Methodist Hospital in Kalamazoo. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The acquisition of a well-known and respected research unit with an established book of business gives MPI Research more capabilities across a wider continuum of the drug-development process, from pre-clinical studies in animals to human Phase I clinical trials.

• M&A: Grand Rapids-based Auto-Wares Group of Companies announced it planned to acquire Warren-based United Automotive Supply Co., according to a report in Aftermarket News. In the deal, Auto-Wares will pick up the UAS distribution center in Warren and five Maxi Automotive Supply-branded stores.

• M&A: American House Senior Living Communities of Bloomfield Hills is acquiring Jenison-based Oak Crest Communities of Michigan, an owner of senior living communities, according to a report in Crain’s Detroit Business. The deal included 532 units at properties in Holland (162 units), Spring Lake (118 units), Jenison (192 units) and Kentwood (60 units). About 500 Oak Crest employees will join American House as part of the deal.

• M&A: Privately-held Iron Mountain-based Northern Star Industries Inc. announced that it plans to sell off its BOSS snow and ice management business business to Bloomington, Minn.-based The Toro Company (NYSE: TTC), according to a statement. BOSS designs, manufactures and sells snowplows and salt and sand spreaders for light- and medium-duty trucks, as well as ATVs. The U.P.-based company anticipated 2014 sales would be around $125 million. Toro said it expects to pay $227 million for the business in a deal that’s expected to close in the first quarter of the company’s 2015 fiscal year, pending closing conditions and regulatory approvals.

• M&A: Devonshire REIT Inc., a Whitehouse, Ohio-based real estate investment trust, says it has acquired two West Michigan shopping centers. According to a statement, the company added Alpine Summit Shopping Center in Walker and Maple Hill Mall in Kalamazoo to its portfolio. The deal also included a community center in Knoxville, Tenn. The acquisition cost of the three malls was $69.75 million. The company has existing shopping center holdings in Grand Haven and South Haven, according to its website.

• Expansion: Grand Rapids-based Gordon Food Service announced in late October that it signed a long-term lease for a new 300,000-square-foot distribution center at the Afton Ridge Business Park in Kannapolis, N.C., according to a statement. Construction on the project is expected to begin this fall with completion expected by fall 2015. GFS said it expects to employ about 275 people at the site within the first five years. The company said the new facility increases its capacity to serve clients in the Southeastern U.S.

 Expansion: The Gerald R. Ford International Airport plans to invest more than $95 million in capital improvements through 2020, according to a statement. Specific projects that are part of airport’s Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) include the construction of a consolidated security checkpoint, resurfacing perimeter roads and maintenance of the airport’s parking structure. The airport’s board has approved a 2015 budget of more than $36.2 million and an overall five-year budget (2016-2020) of $59.7 million.

• Expansion: California-based Wilbur-Ellis recently announced the construction of a new facility in the village of Pewamo in Ionia County. The international distributor of agricultural products was approved for a local business property tax abatement in August and plans to invest $4 million into its new facility at 11848 East Bluewater Highway. The company plans to create an additional 12 jobs with the facility. The Ionia County Economic Alliance, Lyon Township and village of Pewamo worked with the company to secure the tax abatement, according to a statement.

• Expansion: Tier-1 auto supplier Summit Polymers Inc. will invest $7.3 million to expand its operations in Portage and St. Joseph, according to a statement from the Michigan Economic Development Corp. Summit expects to create 198 jobs with the expansion. The MEDC will provide an $800,000 performance-based grant to support the project.

• Expansion: Grand Traverse Distillery plans to open a tasting room at the Downtown Market in Grand Rapids, according to a statement. The maker of craft spirits will offer vodka, gin, rum, whiskey and bourbon to taste and buy by the bottle, as well as other local products and mixers.


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