Published in Economic Development

MiBiz Growth Report: Jan. 25, 2016

BY MiBiz Staff Sunday, January 24, 2016 10:31pm

Here is the MiBiz Growth Report for Jan. 25, 2016:

• M&A: Grand Rapids-based Liquid Asset Partners LLC has acquired the assets of Erik Buell Racing of East Troy, Wis. for $2 million at auction, according to a report in the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. Erik Buell Racing, a manufacturer of high-performance motorcycles that at one time was linked to Harley-Davidson Inc., fell into receivership last year. The report noted the new owners hope to find investors or a buyer to keep the company going.

• M&A: Mill Steel Co. of Grand Rapids purchased certain assets of S&S Steel Services Inc. of Indianapolis, Ind., according to a statement. The deal that closed Jan. 11 helps Mill Steel expand its product portfolio and geographic presence. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

• M&A: Gypsum Supply Co. Inc. of Byron Center has been acquired by Georgia-based Gypsum Management & Supply, a distributor of specialty interior building products. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Gypsum Supply has seven locations in Michigan and one in Toledo.

• M&A: The Western Michigan University Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine completed the acquisition of the Southwest Michigan Innovation Center on Jan. 1. The medical school plans to use the Innovation Center to expand its research work. The Innovation Center presently houses 18 startup companies involved in research. Eleven researchers at companies based at the Innovation Center also hold appointments to positions on the medical school faculty.

• M&A: North Ottawa Community Health System sold its home medical equipment business to CareLinc Home Medical & Equipment Supply Co. in Grand Rapids. The Grand Haven health system’s sale of North Ottawa Home Care Equipment was effective Jan. 1. CareLinc, which now has 20 locations in Michigan, retained the Grand Haven retail location, filling in a gap in its footprint in the lakeshore market where the company also has stores in Holland and Ludington.

• M&A: Troy-based Halo Country LLC acquired the 15-location, Flint-based Halo Burger restaurant chain from Dortch Enterprises LLC of Grand Blanc, Mich., according to a statement. Halo Country is majority owned and operated by CEO Chance Richie.

• Expansion: After outgrowing its current production space, Founders Brewing Co. plans to invest $15 million and $20 million in a second brewery in Grand Rapids. The additional 115,000-square-foot facility, located at 900 Hynes St. SW, will focus on “barrel-aged, experimental, high-gravity, and specialty beers that we’ve become known for.” Founders expects to produce between 200,000 and 250,000 barrels of beer at the site.

• Expansion: Less than two years after launching in Grand Rapids, ELK Brewing LLC now plans to open a second microbrewery and restaurant in Plainfield Charter Township’s Comstock Park district. The existing brewery and taphouse on Wealthy Street is “bottlenecked,” necessitating the expansion to a location on Dodge Street just west of West River Drive, near the entrance to Fifth Third Ballpark, co-owner Eric Karns told MiBiz.

• Expansion: The Gun Lake Tribal Gaming Authority plans an expansion of its Gun Lake Casino, according to a statement. The casino’s owners, the Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians, will increase gaming floor square footage, add a 300-seat buffet and expand entertainment options and staff dining space. Lansing-based Clark Construction Co. is serving as the project’s construction manager. The expansion is tentatively scheduled for completion in the summer of 2017.

• Expansion: Grand Rapids-based Applied Imaging has purchased a Cascade Township office building for its new corporate headquarters. According to a statement, the company cited recent and projected growth as necessitating its move from the existing 25,000-square-foot headquarters at 5282 East Paris Ave. SE to its new building, a 60,000-square-foot facility at 5555 Glenwood Hills Parkway SE. The company plans to move to the renovated building in July.

• Expansion: Detroit-based medical malpractice firm McKeen & Associates PC plans to open a branch in the Kalamazoo area, according to a statement. The firm has hired Raymond Steadmon as an associate attorney, who will lead the firm’s expansion in the region.

• Expansion: Hanson Logistics Services, a St. Joseph-based provider of temperature-controlled supply chain services, plans a deep frozen warehouse for fruit and vegetable growers and processors in South Haven, according to a statement. The warehouse will be located on 25 acres in the I-196 Industrial Park. The first phase of the planned three-phase development will consist of a 150,000-square-foot facility with a capacity of 30 million pounds of product. It is expected to be completed in May 2017.

• Expansion: Grand Rapids-based sports bar and Italian restaurant chain Uccello’s Inc. plans to open a Kalamazoo location at 4400 Stadium Dr., according to a statement. The restaurant, anticipated to open later this year, will occupy a now-closed Bob Evan’s restaurant. The Kalamazoo location will be Uccello’s sixth West Michigan location and comes as the chain is celebrating its 20th anniversary. As part of the anniversary, the Kalamazoo Uccello’s will have an updated look that the restaurant owners will apply to future locations. Grand Rapids-based CD Barnes Construction Inc. will serve as general contractor for the project.

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