Manufacturing

ZEELAND — Herman Miller Inc. will conduct an internal and external search to find a candidate to succeed 20-year company veteran Gregory Bylsma, who will retire at the end of 2020.

Sen. Gary Peters has announced legislation to create a new government agency to synergize the U.S. manufacturing industry.

West Michigan’s manufacturing sector maintained momentum in June as key indexes registered improvements in a monthly survey.

GRAND RAPIDS — Dierdre Jimenez is joining the Business and Institutional Furniture Manufacturers Association at an interesting time.

When Tom Reardon rose through the ranks of the Business and Institutional Furniture Manufacturers Association (BIFMA) 22 years ago, the trade association was operating in the red.

Robotics and automation could offer manufacturers a key way forward to operating in the post-coronavirus environment because of their ability to reduce workplace contamination and worker interactions. 

Major automakers as well as nascent startups are showing an increased focus on electrified commercial delivery vehicles, hoping to gain market share as corporate demand increases.

GRAND RAPIDS — Office furniture maker Steelcase Inc. reported a steep drop in first quarter revenue along with a steady decline in orders as the coronavirus pandemic spread globally. 

WALKER — Chicago-based General Truck Parts & Equipment is investing more than $500,000 to launch a new facility in Walker, the company’s first operation in Michigan.

ZEELAND — In the shadows of the COVID-19 pandemic, office furniture manufacturer Herman Miller Inc. reported a 29.1 percent drop in net sales for the fourth quarter of its 2020 fiscal year that ended May 30, 2020.

GRAND RAPIDS — A freshly minted acquisition and newly formed division will allow Grand Rapids-based TG Manufacturing Group to manufacture complete integrated gaming machine assemblies.

Auto manufacturers, dealers and OEMs will catch a break from the busy auto show circuit this year after the COVID-19 pandemic essentially wiped out the ability to hold crowded events.

Automotive manufacturers are back up and running after months of production shutdowns following widespread outbreaks of COVID-19. 

Citing the effects of the nationwide COVID-19 pandemic, Howmet Aerospace Inc. recently issued a wave of layoffs at its facility in Whitehall that affected 625 of its more than 2,000 local employees.

week that was supposed to be bustling with news and information on new office furniture products and innovations in the world of commercial design will be a lot more reserved.

Shared transit presents unprecedented risks as communities and businesses around the state reopen and people come out of isolation following a months-long shut down because of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

CHARLOTTE — Daryl Adams hesitated slightly when introducing himself on Monday afternoon.

HOLLAND — Family-owned investment firm Coastal Group has acquired a Louisiana honeycomb packaging manufacturer and has moved all of the company’s operations to Holland. 

GRAND RAPIDS — Office furniture maker Steelcase Inc. has called back most of its manufacturing workforce from temporary layoffs as it gets back to work to fulfill around $700 million in customer order backlogs. 

Three mobility programs with a reach into West Michigan received $230,000 in state grant funding intended to address public health concerns brought on by the coronavirus. 

Temporary workers were some of the first people to lose manufacturing jobs when the coronavirus started to spread into the Midwest, and they also filled in the gaps left by the highly contagious virus at essential businesses. 

People line up early at manufacturing plants to have their temperature taken by registered nurses who were laid off from hospitals in the chaos of the COVID-19 crisis. 

The coronavirus pandemic never shut down D&M Metal Products Co. in Comstock Park, but it did change the way employees arrive at work.

KALAMAZOO — Even as construction and development projects came to a halt for several weeks as states and the nation reacted to the spread of COVID-19, Seven Generations Architecture & Engineering LLC has remained busy. 

ZEELAND — Office furniture manufacturer Herman Miller Inc. is laying off about 300 employees throughout the company’s global workforce in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and related restrictions.

Holland-based Collision Consolidation Co. LLC has acquired Stonewall Road Automotive Group, a Grand Rapids-based multi-state operator of MAACO automotive repair centers. 

The aerospace industry is facing unparalleled disruption and uncertainty emerging from the continued grounding of Boeing’s 737 Max and the COVID-19 pandemic. 

GRAND RAPIDS — Equipment maker Coldbreak knew it would face a major challenge when the outbreak of COVID-19 led to the shutdown of bars and restaurants and events across the country. 

Manufacturers are contending with the risk COVID-19 still poses to their workforces.

The COVID-19 global pandemic has pushed millions of Americans to work from their home offices, or in lieu of a dedicated workspace, their dining room tables and couches. 

Automotive suppliers in West Michigan will begin warming up the industry’s supply chain next week.  

GRAND HAVEN — Auto supplier GHSP has launched a line of products for emergency and transport vehicles that uses ultraviolet light to disinfect and kill germs, including pathogens such as the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.

Office furniture maker Knoll Inc. has entered into a tentative agreement to sell the company’s manufacturing plant in Kentwood. 

As Michigan manufacturers shift course to join the growing “arsenal of health,” federal regulators have responded to the COVID-19 outbreak by reducing potential liability that typically comes with making medical supplies.

Automakers are delaying or rethinking the timing of new vehicles as production disruptions caused by the global COVID-19 pandemic linger into the spring.

On Thursday, Josh Cook got the call every licensed beverage alcohol producer dreads. 

ZEELAND — Gentex Corp. (NASDAQ: GNTX) reported first-quarter losses related to the ongoing shutdown of most vehicle production and the ensuing economic crisis caused by the coronavirus global pandemic.

Wolverine World Wide Inc. is leaning into e-commerce as the COVID-19 crisis drives more consumer purchases online. 

GRAND RAPIDS — UFP Industries Inc. posted record sales and earnings for the first three months of 2020.

HOLLAND — A West Michigan electronics and furniture manufacturer has retooled operations to produce contact-tracing badges that help employers maintain social distancing among workers during the coronavirus pandemic fallout.

The vast majority of manufacturers are predicting challenging times ahead for the industry. 

MUSKEGON — Pace Industries LLC, which manufactures die-cast parts and previously acquired the former Port City Group operations in Muskegon, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy this week. 

ZEELAND — Office furniture maker Herman Miller Inc. has filed a federal lawsuit against an online retailer for counterfeiting iconic designs from the company’s Design Within Reach Inc. subsidiary. 

 As businesses have been forced to pause operations in order to slow the spread of COVID-19, manufacturers are using the opportunity to explore and research new technologies that could change their future processes. 

In late March, two days before Gov. Gretchen Whitmer issued a stay-home order for all state residents, General Motors Co. approached Esys Automation with a challenge. 

The fallout from the coronavirus pandemic may prompt a new spike in the adoption of automation among the region’s manufacturers and have a lasting effect on an already shifting labor market.

Just barely three months into John Walsh’s role as president of the Michigan Manufacturers Association (MMA), the COVID-19 crisis hit the industry with a nearly complete shutdown of the state. MMA, which serves as the lobbying arm for the automotive industry and other manufacturing companies, has pivoted to communicate and advocate in Lansing for members while also connecting manufacturers that can address the shortage of medical supplies with the health systems that need them most. Walsh spoke with MiBiz about his vision for MMA and what the organization can do to help companies make it through the current crisis. 

GRAND RAPIDS — Pallet management firm Kamps Inc. has acquired wood products wholesaler D&H Bark Inc. of Manton in Wexford County.