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John Wiegand

John Wiegand

Staff writer

jwiegand@mibiz.com

HOLLAND — While many producers of advanced electrical systems have their sights set on electric vehicles, one West Michigan manufacturer is pursuing a more underserved sector.

The next two years are shaping up to be a busy time for tool and die makers in West Michigan and beyond.

MIDDLEVILLE — Backed by a new investment, Middleville Tool & Die Co. wants to ramp up its manufacturing capabilities that will pull it further away from its legacy business.

Chervon North America will move its headquarters from downtown Grand Rapids to Naperville, Ill., a suburb outside of Chicago.

Two veteran West Michigan dealership executives have acquired Grand Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram in Lowell.

A mix of economic optimism and the availability of capital should yield another strong year for acquisitions in 2017.

KALAMAZOO — One Southwest Michigan biotech company wants to leverage a little-known chemical compound to capitalize on the hydroponic and cannabis industries. 

During a time when so many organizations are struggling to find talent, one Lansing-based nonprofit continues to offer jobs to people with disabilities. Since its founding in 1976, Peckham Inc. has operated under the premise that “people with disabilities are amazing workers but they often need some extra support around them to be successful,” said President and CEO Mitchell Tomlinson. Over the last two years, the organization has shifted some of its focus to providing training and opportunities for people with disabilities in the technology support field. Now, Peckham employs 150 people with disabilities in Grand Rapids working in I.T. help-desk positions and is in the process of hiring at least 30 more workers. Tomlinson spoke with MiBiz about Peckham’s decision to begin offering technology-support services and the opportunities those positions unlock for workers with disabilities. 

MUSKEGON — After a career spent in a variety of management and sales roles in the packaging industry, Rich Wilson decided it was time to strike out on his own. 

Despite the possibility of easing emissions regulations and historically low gasoline prices, LG Chem Michigan Inc. remains charged about the possibilities for electrified vehicles. 

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