The challenges confronting Michigan’s tool, die and mold makers are deeply rooted. The state hosts more than twice as many tool and die workers compared to any other state, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. As the undisputed leader of the industry, Michigan also suffers the greatest consequences of its uncertainty.

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As the Trump administration prepares to roll back emissions regulations that push cars to be cleaner and more fuel efficient, it may also set the stage for a political battle that could create a rift in the U.S. auto industry. After several months of comment and a possible setback from the 35-day government shutdown last month, the newly finalized fuel economy rules are due from the administration by March 31. However, following the publication of the proposed changes, California and eighteen other states announced that if less-stringent fuel economy rules are enacted, they will sue the government — which may lead to a period of prolonged regulatory uncertainty.

Published in Manufacturing

ACME — In his role as president of Shape Corp., Mark White often deals with disruptions in navigating the Grand Haven-based Tier 1 automotive supplier through uncertain business conditions.

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ACME — After an extended period of growth, vehicle sales have started to cool at a time when industry-wide uncertainty is hampering manufacturers’ optimism.

Published in Manufacturing

ACME — Amid a period of technological upheaval in the automotive industry, West Michigan-based supplier Mann + Hummel USA Inc. is reducing project costs and saving time by partnering, collaborating or aligning with larger OEMs.

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ACME — A decade into the economic recovery, West Michigan-based automotive suppliers are having to look ahead and prepare for a period of declining new vehicle sales.

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When Jim Hackett retired from the corner office at Steelcase Inc. in 2014, he told MiBiz the “narrative is still being written” about what he planned to do in the next phase of his professional life.

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The sector that provides the majority of tooling, fixtures and molds required to manufacture automotive components is facing a crisis.

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Following through with campaign promises, the Trump administration has set its sights on renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). 

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As the automotive industry pursues cutting-edge technological breakthroughs in autonomous driving and vehicle electrification, West Michigan suppliers must ensure they’re not left behind. 

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