WYOMING — A Cleveland-based producer of specialty abrasive products plans to move part of its business to the Grand Rapids area after it was acquired by local private equity firm Stone Fox Ventures LLC.
After 22 years with The Right Place Inc., Rick Chapla has stepped down and moves into the next phase of his career. Chapla focused on behind-the-scenes efforts to help public and private sector projects become reality, often serving as a conduit for connecting people. Chapla, who got his start in planning and economic development in Muskegon more than three and a half decades ago, spoke with MiBiz about how West Michigan has changed throughout the years and what he has planned next.
Michigan’s economy will see slower economic and employment growth in 2019 amid the ongoing tight labor market and less U.S. economic growth, economists say.
Robert Dye views 2019 as a “transitional year” for the U.S. economy as a trio of forces align to moderate growth during the year.
Change is inevitable in government and in business. Just ask The Right Place President and CEO Birgit Klohs, who next year will have worked in economic development during the terms of five different Michigan governors. Still, with all the uncertainty surrounding international trade and politics, now is not the time to wreak havoc on the state’s economic development policies, she said.
West Michigan’s medical device manufacturers are reaching a tipping point. The region’s fledgling industry has begun to mature, especially around contract manufacturing, which draws on the legacy of industrial knowledge across West Michigan.
While many companies adopt automation to improve factory efficiency and equipment uptime, some West Michigan-based experts warn that improperly implemented technology can cost businesses in the long run.
Four business expansions in West Michigan that will collectively generate $110.3 million in investment and create more than 280 jobs earned state incentives today.
Pick up a manufacturing-oriented trade publication these days, and you’ll probably encounter a deluge of material on the latest 3D printers, collaborative robots or new industrial technology that falls under the wide umbrella of Industry 4.0.
Grand Rapids is one of three cities nationally to be selected for a pilot program from Ford Motor Co. aimed at addressing the transportation needs of today and in the future.