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Finance

The Shyft Group was busy in 2020 — and a couple of major deals were only part of the dizzying year.

A restructuring for Grand Angels in 2021 aims to create understanding about angel investing and greater diversity among investors and their deals.

The two acquisitions ChoiceOne Financial Services Inc. closed over a 15-month period tripled the size of the Sparta-based bank holding company.

Greg Williams was looking for a company that could move global insurance brokerage Acrisure LLC into the world of artificial intelligence.

Hannah Lawrence remembered the car ride home after closing on the acquisition of her first business — a moment of brief panic.

As the COVID-19 pandemic was just starting to set in last spring, Jeff Lambert jotted down the words “positively legendary” on a sticky note.

As the economy abruptly ground to a halt last spring under COVID-19 restrictions, Jeff Ott stayed busy.

 The team at Grand Rapids-based private equity firm Auxo Investment Partners has a saying that every deal has to die once before it closes.

Since launching in July 2019, the Charter Growth Capital Fund has made five investments and raised $31 million to make minority investments in growing, middle-market companies that need growth capital.

GRAND RAPIDS — The West Michigan venture capital fund that intends to invest in growing, minority-owned businesses has garnered attention from interested parties who want to replicate the model elsewhere in the U.S.

The $91 million Northpointe Bancshares Inc. netted in a private stock placement will help support further growth through mid-decade.

HOLLAND — Macatawa Bank Corp. increased earnings in the fourth quarter, although full-year results declined from the prior year.

Independent Bank Corp. posted strong earnings growth during 2020 based in part on a strong mortgage pipeline and despite pandemic-related challenges.

GRAND RAPIDS — The venture capital fund formed a year ago in Grand Rapids to invest in minority-owned businesses has netted $8.5 million in commitments from investors and aims to hit $10 million this year.

Huntington Bancshares Inc. intends to close 198 branch offices — about half of which are based in Meijer Inc. stores in Michigan — after completing the proposed $22 billion acquisition of Detroit-based TCF Financial Corp.

GRAND RAPIDS — Mercantile Bank Corp. ended 2020 with higher quarterly earnings despite the ongoing costs and economic turbulence from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The $15 million Sturgis Bancorp Inc. raised through a debt offering will go to support further growth across Southwestern Michigan.

The latest state effort to provide financial aid to Michigan small businesses and entertainment venues that are ailing from the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting restrictions has a relatively short application window based on previous demand.

TRAVERSE CITY — Insurance brokerage High Street Insurance Partners Inc. has acquired two more agencies, adding to the firm’s existing market presence in the eastern U.S. and expanding it into the Pacific Northwest.

ADA — Century Technology Group LLC looks to reload by pursuing acquisitions of technology companies that it can grow.

John Ruther joined the Grand Rapids office of O’Keefe Consulting LLC in July as managing director. The company, based in Bloomfield Hills, offers a range of services including turnaround and restructuring consulting, corporate finance and litigation support. Ruther spoke with MiBiz about his view that some of the business practices that employers adopted in the pandemic — remote work and accelerating the use of automation — will remain in place in 2021 and beyond.

Wall Street dealt with its share of volatility in 2020, a year with a deep decline at the outset of the pandemic followed by a later rebound. Citing volatility in the stock market over the last few years, some investors have shifted toward safety in managing their money. Susan Vogel-Vanderson, the managing director for Fifth Third Private Bank in West Michigan, hopes the new year brings some certainty to financial markets. A trusts and estates attorney, Vogel-Vanderson also is monitoring what could happen to tax rates in 2021 under the Biden administration, particularly if Democrats take control of the U.S. Senate after the Georgia runoffs.

Huntington Bancshares Inc. and Detroit-based TCF Financial Corp., two of the largest banks operating in West Michigan, plan to merge in a $22 billion deal that would create a Midwestern banking powerhouse.

A new $200 million fund to support growing businesses in Michigan intends to direct half of the capital it raises to financing minority-owned companies.

Raising capital for a startup company is never easy, though there are steps entrepreneurs with a dream and a vision can take to help their cause.

GRAND RAPIDS — The new managing partner for Grand Angels looks to tap his statewide contacts to build a bigger presence among early-stage investors.

The Chicago-area insurance brokerage firm that acquired Grand Rapids-based Lighthouse Group intends to look for other deals in Michigan.

GRAND RAPIDS — Angel investor group Grand Angels has named Dale Grogan as its new managing partner.

Compared to a year ago, fewer bankers expect their institutions to make an acquisition in the next 12 months, as they focus on navigating through the financial fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Even with new COVID-19 restrictions in place for the next three weeks, Michigan sits “well positioned” to eventually recover economically from the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new Comerica Inc. outlook.

ST. JOSEPH — The proposed acquisition of Edgewater Bancorp Inc. would give United Federal Credit Union greater expertise to further grow commercial lending.

ROCKFORD — Wolverine World Wide Inc. reported a strong performance from its e-commerce business in a third quarter earnings report Thursday, though quarterly and year-to-date revenue are down compared to last year.

Mercantile Bank’s move into Ohio with the opening of a Cincinnati mortgage lending office will allow the Grand Rapids-based bank to “put a flag down there,” bank officials say.

ChoiceOne Financial Service Inc. has reported significantly higher quarterly earnings following the completion of two acquisitions in the last year.

M&A deal flow that was dampened during the pandemic could soar in 2021, according to an annual outlook of executives and M&A professionals.

Independent Bank Corp. grew earnings in the third quarter against the “many challenges” of the COVID-19 pandemic.

ST. JOSEPH — United Federal Credit Union would broaden its footprint in Southwest Michigan with the planned acquisition of Edgewater Bancorp Inc.

HASTINGS — Mercantile Bank Corp. plans to sell a Hastings branch office to Lake Trust Credit Union as part of an ongoing initiative to shrink its office footprint.

For more than 45 years, Purple East has been a stalwart alternative lifestyle retailer in Grand Rapids, gaining a reputation for selling an assortment of clothing, glass pipes and smoking accessories.

The COVID-19 pandemic that slammed the economy this spring could generate more M&A deals in the months ahead.

HOLLAND — Costs from the COVID-19 pandemic lowered Macatawa Bank Corp.’s most recent quarterly earnings.

Kent County has added $3.5 million to a grant program providing financial assistance to small businesses ailing from the financial fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Business and community leaders on Wednesday remembered Peter Secchia as a business leader and generous philanthropist who helped to shape West Michigan over the past several decades.

GRAND RAPIDS — Mercantile Bank Corp. recorded lower third quarter earnings amid what President and CEO Robert Kaminski Jr. called a “challenging operating environment” from the COVID-19 pandemic.

GRAND RAPIDS — An employee group has taken a majority ownership position in investment advisory firm Red Cedar Investment Management.

The 18 Michigan investors who invested in a Florida craft rum distiller are backing a fast-growing industry that offers plenty of opportunity.

A new capital fund seeded with state money got off to a quick start and has made investments in a half dozen young technology companies since launching two months ago.

GRAND RAPIDS — Grand Angels President Tim Parker has stepped down to run a community foundation in Wisconsin.