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MiBiz Growth Report: Oct. 3, 2016

BY MiBiz Staff Sunday, October 02, 2016 02:19pm

Here’s the MiBiz Growth Report for Oct. 3, 2016: 

• M&A: Glenmoor Village, a Battle Creek-based manufactured home community, has been acquired by Chicago-based Zeman Homes Inc., according to a statement. Zeman, one of the largest private operators of manufactured home communities, now has seven properties in Michigan, plus sites in Arizona, California, Florida, Illinois and Indiana. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Glenmoor opened in 2002, according to a report in the Battle Creek Enquirer

• M&A: Trillium Ventures MSV LLC, a Grand Rapids-based multi-family investment and property management firm, has acquired a Portage apartment complex. The company secured a 12-month $7.1 million short-term loan to acquire the 254-unit Timberwood Crossing Apartments in the Kalamazoo suburb, according to a statement. Additionally, an affiliate firm of Trillium Ventures raised just over $4.5 million in equity for the acquisition, according to a federal regulatory filing. The firm secured the loan with assistance from Cathy Bronkema, partner and managing director for the Grand Rapids office Cohen Financial, a Chicago-based real estate capital firm.

• M&A: Jeannette, Pa.-based Huntington Foam, which operates a plant in Greenville, Mich., has been acquired by the private equity arm of Millstein & Co. of New York, according to a statement. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Huntington Foam makes custom shape-molded foam and packaging products at plants in Greenville and South Carolina and two facilities in Mexico. Huntington had been owned by Stamford, Conn.-based Drum Capital Management LLC. Some existing Huntington executives made equity investments in the company as a result of the deal. 

• M&A: Virginia-based Ferguson Waterworks has acquired Jackson-based Michigan Pipe and Valve’s Kalamazoo location. The acquisition will expand the upper Midwest market of Ferguson, one of the country’s largest distributors of commercial plumbing supplies. This deal comes as part of a larger strategy that has included 12 other deals over the past year, according to a statement. The company also acquired Madison Heights-based Michigan Meter Technology Group.

• Expansion: Rx Optical Laboratories Inc. broke ground on a $6 million expansion of its corporate headquarters in Kalamazoo. The project will more than double the size of Rx Optical’s headquarters on South State Street, near Crosstown Parkway, to 36,000 square feet. This follows a previous $3 million expansion that included a patient care area, retail space and laboratories at the site. The latest expansion will house optician training facilities, talent management and recruiting, insurance billing and other administrative groups. Completion is targeted for July 2017. The company operates 52 Rx Optical retail stores in Michigan and northern Indiana. A 53rd location opens this fall on Drake Road, the company’s seventh in the Kalamazoo area.

• Expansion: Johnson Technology Inc., a subsidiary of GE Aviation, plans to invest more than $14 million in converting an existing warehouse into a manufacturing facility for nozzles and shrouds for commercial and military jet engines. The expansion comes as a way to alleviate capacity constraints and accommodate projected growth, according to a statement. Johnson Technology plans to hire an additional 100 workers to its 694-person workforce in Norton Shores as a result of the expansion, which was supported with an $800,000 performance-based grant from the Michigan Economic Development Corp.

• Partnership: Sturgis-based Burr Oak Tool Inc. has entered a strategic partnership with Italian firm Sistemi Meccanici Industriali. The partnership will allow Sistemi and Burr Oak — a manufacturer of machinery used in the production of heat exchangers in the heating, cooling and refrigeration industries — to cross-sell each others’ products to customers, Vice President Tim Doot told MiBiz. Heat exchangers are comprised primarily of fins and tubes. While Burr Oak focuses on machinery that produces the fins, Sistemi Meccanici Industriali concentrates on the tube side. Both companies have received calls from their customers requesting machinery for both fins and tubes, making this an ideal relationship that could grow further, Doot said. Burr Oak employs roughly 330 workers in Sturgis and generates annual sales of between $50 million and $100 million.

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