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MiBiz Growth Report: April 2, 2018

BY MiBiz Staff Sunday, April 01, 2018 10:21am

Here is the MiBiz Growth Report for April 2, 2018.

• M&A: A subsidiary of Universal Forest Products Inc. (Nasdaq: UFPI) plans to acquire “substantially all” of the operating assets of Marietta, Ga.-based North American Container Corp., a producer of packaging products, according to a statement. The deal should close by June 1. Terms of the deal were undisclosed. The acquisition will add steel, corrugated and hardwood packaging to Universal’s lineup of industrial products. North American Container, founded in 1967, operates nine manufacturing facilities in Georgia, South Carolina, Tennessee and Wisconsin and recorded 2017 sales of about $71 million. Universal Forest Products in February reported that it generated $3.9 billion in net sales with net earnings of $119.5 million for 2017.

• M&A: Caledonia Township-based Skytron LLC, a supplier of medical equipment, has acquired Clean Start Surgical LLC of Plymouth, according to a statement. The deal will expand Skytron’s portfolio of infection prevention solutions with the addition of CleanStart’s high-capacity, high-tech cleaners, which it developed three years ago. The company’s automated product uses ultrasonic technology to clean various reusable medical devices and help cut down on health care-acquired infections. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

• M&A: ZFS Creston LLC, an affiliate of Zeeland Farm Services Inc., plans to purchase a soybean facility, soy flour mill, grain elevator and non-GMO soybean inventories in Creston, Iowa from farming cooperative CHS Inc., according to a statement. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The acquisition places the company in the “rich and storied” agricultural powerhouse of Iowa, ZFS President Cliff Meeuwsen said in a statement. The Iowa facility can produce soybean meal, soy white flakes, soy flour and soybean oil. The company plans to hire new employees for the facility, but didn’t disclose how many jobs would be added or when production will start.

• M&A: Oak Brook, Ill.-based Athletico Physical Therapy agreed to acquire C. Weaver Physical Therapy, an outpatient rehabilitation center in East Lansing founded nearly 25 years ago by Carl Weaver. The acquisition further expands Athletico’s footprint in mid-Michigan and is its 35th clinic in the state.

• M&A: Grand Haven-based automotive supplier Shape Corp. is selling its stamping operations facility in Spring Lake to Ridgeview Industries Inc., a Grand Rapids-based stampings and assembly manufacturer. The sale is expected to close in early July, according to a statement. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The deal positions Shape Corp to “further invest in our strategic areas of focus for lightweighting,” said John Keene, the company’s marketing manager. The stampings facility at 16933 144th Ave. in Spring Lake Township currently has 99 employees, according to Keene, who added that once the deal closes, Ridgeview will continue to run the facility with its current employee base.

• M&A: Grand Rapids-based digital services provider CQL Corp. has acquired Union Digital Co., an Ann Arbor-based digital commerce and creative agency. The deal “addresses the increasing needs of CQL’s customers [by] providing them greater capabilities through the expansion of leading strategy, design, and digital transformation work,” according to a statement from CQL, which is based in Grand Rapids. Terms of the deal were undisclosed. CQL specializes in e-commerce, digital marketing, software and digital business strategy.

• Expansion: Aerospace manufacturer Jedco Inc. plans to invest $9 million to expand capacity at its plant in Grand Rapids, according to a statement. With the investment in new machinery, the company expects to create 39 jobs over the next three years. Jedco is a fabricator of gas turbine engines and various aerospace components. The Michigan Economic Development Corp. (MEDC), the City of Grand Rapids, and The Right Place Inc. assisted the company with its expansion plans. The MEDC awarded Jedco a performance-based $215,000 Michigan Business Development Program grant to support the initiative.

• Expansion: Backed by a recent capital infusion and experiencing rapid growth, Grand River Aseptic Manufacturing Inc. plans to quadruple capacity with the development of a new facility south of downtown Grand Rapids. The fast-growing pharmaceutical contract developer and manufacturer of injectable drugs has agreements to acquire two parcels totaling 1.5 acres, one of them from Grand Valley State University on Butterworth Street. The company expects to close on the land acquisitions within 90 days and begin work this summer on a facility of up to 60,000 square feet. The expansion will cost between $35 million and $40 million and accommodate continued growth for the company, said President and CEO Tom Ross. The new facility should begin operations in July 2020.

• Expansion: Grand Rapids-based BarFly Ventures LLC plans to open its second HopCat location in Grand Rapids this fall at 2183 East Beltline Ave. NE near Knapp Street. The beer bar will occupy 6,150 square feet of space in the building after renovations. The proposed bar will be the 17th HopCat location overall and the seventh in Michigan.

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