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GRAND RAPIDS — Talk about a quick return on investment.

GRAND RAPIDS — The doctor has spoken: Today’s automobiles need to go on a diet.

Manufacturers want to show students that their perceptions of modern manufacturing plants are likely Hollywood fabrications.

Automotive suppliers across West Michigan have no shortage of opportunities these days. Vehicle production volumes are up, new product launches are on the rise, and automakers increasingly insist that their suppliers have a global footprint.

Automotive supplier M&A still active

Written by | Sunday, 03 March 2013 22:00 |

Many West Michigan automotive suppliers are still considering selling their businesses or acquiring companies even after the flurry of M&A activity in late 2012. The problem: A lot of them are just too busy to work on deals.

We recently did some work with a company that is a maker of fluid level indicators for engine oil and transmission fluid – in other words, dipsticks. It got us thinking about the risks that innovation can present to tried and true automotive components.

After spending decades distancing themselves from diesel engines in North America, the Detroit Three automakers have slowly started to come around to the niche potential for diesel-powered cars, trucks and SUVs.

Cure for Dubai’s ailments?

Written by | Sunday, 17 February 2013 22:00 |

As local medical device companies look for new growth opportunities, they may do well to consider serving the burgeoning market in the Middle East, specifically Dubai.

HOLLAND — Haworth Inc. had what President and CEO Franco Bianchi considers a “pretty good year” in 2012 given the economy and despite a small decline in sales tied to the sale of two brands.

Alticor sales top $11 billion

Written by | Sunday, 17 February 2013 22:00 |

ADA — Growth in each of direct-selling giant Amway’s top 10 markets helped drive sales last year for parent company Alticor Inc., which on Feb. 7 announced global sales of $11.3 billion, an increase of nearly 3.7 percent.

As lead times shrink and the cost advantages of importing products erode, many manufacturers are finding viability in on-shoring production to domestic sources.

Haworth sales off 5 percent in 2012

Written by | Friday, 08 February 2013 07:11 |

The sale of two foreign brands caused Haworth Inc.’s sales to dip last year.

The automotive industry has increasingly become an environment that requires a great deal of interaction between native English-speaking and international personnel.

While it took a big hit from the economic downturn and near-collapse of the American auto industry, Alliance CNC bounced back through equal doses of reinvention and diversification.

Associated Rack continues GR expansion

Written by | Sunday, 03 February 2013 22:36 |

Although Associated Rack just moved to Grand Rapids in October, the company has already expanded locally with a strategic acquisition.

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