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Manufacturing

GRAND RAPIDS TWP. — Wood products manufacturer UFP Industries Inc. continued its global growth by acquiring a controlling equity position in an India-based industrial packaging operation.

Against the backdrop of several high-profile, nationwide labor disputes, many local unions are seeing an uptick in interest from independent workers.

OTISCO TWP. — Extruded Aluminum Corp. has landed $250,000 in state grant funding to support the manufacturer’s plans for a $30.4 million expansion near Belding.

CASCADE TWP. — Tier 1 automotive supplier Lacks Enterprises Inc. has formed a joint venture with a fellow family-owned business in Texas to supply Toyota Motor North America with exterior components.

GRAND RAPIDS TWP. — UFP Industries Inc. has maintained an active pipeline of acquisitions over the past several years as CEO Matt Missad maintains strong growth and a focus on diversification.

Generating $2.1 billion in revenue in its most recent quarter and operating 170 facilities across the world, UFP Industries Inc. is — by most accounts — a giant that resides in greater Grand Rapids.

ZEELAND — A recent lawsuit alleges Herman Miller Inc. and a foundation with close ties to the contract furniture manufacturer conspired to obtain rights to an iconic mid-century modern lighting furniture design.

GRAND RAPIDS TWP. — Wood products manufacturer UFP Industries Inc. continues to expand its presence in Australia after announcing yet another acquisition in the country.

KALAMAZOO — Stryker Corp.’s sales grew more than 11 percent in the third quarter, although a surge in COVID-19 cases and hospital staffing shortages that led to deferred surgeries curtailed sales in the company’s U.S-based orthopedic implant business.

GRAND RAPIDS — Chicago-based private equity firm CORE Industrial Partners LLC has acquired three Grand Rapids businesses to form a new additive manufacturing platform.

GRAND RAPIDS — Global office furniture maker Steelcase Inc. has acquired one of its longtime collaborative design partners in an all cash deal.

NOVI — A brand in The Shyft Group Inc.’s portfolio has inked a $53 million contract with the United States Postal Service.

JENISON — With brisk business in two surging market segments, Cellulose Material Solutions LLC is investing in expanding its operations and beefing up production capacity.

Manufacturers that supply the defense industry will need to adhere to a new set of uniform cybersecurity standards in order to bid on contracts from the U.S. Department of Defense.

GRAND RAPIDS TWP. — As lumber prices returned to typical levels this year following their meteoric rise during the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic, executives at UFP Industries Inc. credit the company’s diversified business model for helping it weather the volatility.

CASCADE TWP. — L3Harris Technologies Inc., a global tech company that supplies the defense industry, has announced a nearly $2.6 million expansion in the Grand Rapids area.

PORTAGE — Clark Logic LLC, a Southwest Michigan-based provider of single-source transportation, logistics, facility and real estate solutions, has completed the acquisition of a nearby company.

JENISON — To meet surging demand for its products, Cellulose Material Solutions LLC is planning a $9 million investment to add a second production line and an expansion at its existing facility in Jenison.

ZEELAND — A recent acquisition by Gentex Corp. will allow the Zeeland-based company to expand on its offerings to the aerospace industry.

This summer, Melbourne, Fla.-based defense contractor L3Harris Technologies Inc. sold off its Muskegon Township-based Combat Propulsion Systems operation to German defense contractor RENK Group.

Michigan’s newly signed state budget aims to maintain the momentum behind a variety of programs designed to help the manufacturing industry address workforce challenges.

Early this month, longtime Steelcase Inc. corporate leader Sara Armbruster became the company’s 10th CEO in its 109-year history. Armbruster has been with Steelcase since 2007 and served as vice president of strategy, research and digital transformation since February 2018.

West Michigan economic development organizations have launched a campaign aimed at preparing local manufacturers to adopt Industry 4.0 technology and practices.

CASCADE TWP. — New Buell motorcycles are heading into production, and the local company behind the brand’s revival has made good on its promise to produce them in the Grand Rapids area.

HOLLAND — Family-owned furniture maker Haworth Inc. has announced a new partnership that will bring seating solutions from an industry mainstay to its collection.

GRAND RAPIDS — Sara Armbruster has taken over as president and CEO of global office furniture manufacturer Steelcase Inc., the company announced today.

ZEELAND — Herman Miller Inc. contended with several market disruptions as it worked to integrate the newly acquired Knoll Inc. into its operations during the start of its new fiscal year.

ALLEGAN — Perrigo Co. plc has agreed to pay hundreds of millions of dollars to settle a tax case in Ireland that could have cost far more than what the company paid.

GRAND RAPIDS — Anticipating an uptick in demand for factory-built housing, Grand Rapids-based wood products manufacturer UFP Industries Inc. announced the acquisition of one of its current vendors.

A six-bill package introduced this month in Lansing seeks stricter state oversight of medical cannabis caregivers, which critics say is a veiled attempt by commercial growers to increase their retail market share.

While many West Michigan manufacturers are staying mum on a proposed federal COVID-19 vaccine mandate and how it might affect the industry, Nelson Jacobson believes it’s a conversation worth having.

The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration is set to issue temporary emergency rules in the coming weeks or months to guide President Biden’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate. Biden’s directive requires a COVID-19 vaccine or weekly testing among employees at companies with 100 workers or more — roughly two-thirds of the U.S. workforce.

GRAND RAPIDS — While business leaders generally view the Biden administration’s vaccine mandate as an added burden on employers, Steelcase Inc. President and CEO Jim Keane thinks it could help accelerate the return to normalcy and prop up the struggling contract furniture industry. 

ZEELAND TWP. — USA Sign Frame and Stake Inc., which produces signs, sign frames and stakes in Ottawa County, has announced a nearly $1.23 million expansion that will move operations from Georgetown Township to Zeeland Township. 

LANSING — Food and animal safety products maker Neogen Corp. has bolstered its holding in the fast-growing veterinary market with the acquisition of an Atlanta-based companion animal health company. 

PLYMOUTH — Specialty vehicle manufacturer The Shyft Group Inc., formerly headquartered in Charlotte, announced today that it has opened a new research and development center in Wayne County.

When Gordon Kay sought a manufacturer to build a new model of performance sailing yachts, he initially didn’t even consider the U.S. as a destination for production.

Family-owned manufacturing companies are facing similar challenges as the industry at large as succession planning is complicated by an aging workforce.

KALAMAZOO — Foodservice and consumer brand packaging manufacturer Fabri-Kal Corp. has reached a definitive agreement to sell to Pactiv Evergreen Inc. in a deal valued at approximately $380 million. 

GRAND RAPIDS — As an executive at a global company serving firms in the e-commerce, logistics and warehousing spaces, Mike Larsson has noticed the needs of his customers change dramatically over the last year.

As the new class of students arrived at Northview Next this year, they may have noticed some new advanced manufacturing training tools. 

ALLEGAN — A manufacturer of continuous insulation systems for commercial buildings plans to invest $1.1 million to expand its facility in Allegan.

The upcoming Advanced Manufacturing Expo will feature more educational opportunities than in past years, one of the more noticeable differences to an event entering its sixth year.

WILLIAMSBURG — Tier 1 automotive and material handling supplier Grand Traverse Plastics Corp. has received state support for a planned $11.5 million expansion near Traverse City that’s expected to create up to 43 jobs.

When asked how his company is managing the fallout of a microchip shortage that has crippled the automotive industry, Neil Boehm paused.

Choosing whether to issue temporary layoffs is one of many decisions Pat Greene has had to contend with as the head of Cascade Die Casting Group Inc.

Magna International Inc. CEO Seetarama Kotagiri got right to the point in discussing the implications of an increasingly electrified vehicle fleet on the global automotive supply chain.

ST. JOSEPH — Southwest Michigan company Edgewater Automation LLC is expanding as manufacturers across the state adopt automation to help ease workforce pressures.