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Kalamazoo and Battle Creek (34)

Click on the link below to download this year's Southwest Michigan Spotlight section PDF.

Talk about a case of beating expectations.

The formation of a unit to oversee clinical research puts another key element in place for the Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine in Kalamazoo.

Changes ahead for SMIC

Written by | Sunday, 02 August 2015 22:00 |

As Western Michigan University plans the expansion of its Business Technology and Research Park, a key part of the existing site is undergoing a transition.

Officials in Battle Creek believe they have found the $25 million cure for what ails the Cereal City’s downtown.

BATTLE CREEK — The amenities that make the home of the former Southwest Regional Rehabilitation Center in Battle Creek a unique real estate listing also pose challenges for brokers trying to move the property.

Southwest Michigan’s manufacturing sector has clipped along at a moderate but steady growth rate over the last year.

Over the last few years, Kalamazoo has been able to lure some big-city entertainment to its small-town environment.

With the additional $20 million it seeks to raise, Armune BioScience Inc. hopes to drive growth as well as research new applications for the blood test it developed to diagnose prostate cancer.

The Southwest Michigan brewery startups from twenty or thirty years ago have helped create a dynamic craft beverage scene in the Kalamazoo and Calhoun county region — a market that continues to attract new producers to set up shop.

With 1,000 microbreweries in the planning stages nationwide and 700 expected to open for business this year, the craft brewing industry has struggled to find skilled workers to bring all that new beer to market.

BATTLE CREEK — Marie Briganti stepped into the role of CEO at Battle Creek Unlimited in May as the economic development organization goes through somewhat of a transitional period.

Global consumer products company Newell Rubbermaid Inc. selected Kalamazoo as the site of its new corporate design center because of the strong concentration of designers in the region. Now, local officials hope to leverage the company’s presence to lure more design-related businesses to Southwest Michigan.

Buoyed by the strength of the automotive industry, the growth of Southwest Michigan’s auto suppliers helped lead the region’s manufacturing sector to another year of job gains.
In fact, the region’s manufacturers largely grew at a rate that outpaced the statewide performance in the same period, according to the June 2014 Business Outlook report from the .W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.

In commercial real estate as in workforce development, companies in Southwest Michigan have had to manage wild swings in availability over the last five years.

Borgess Health’s opening of a $26.9 million medical campus in Battle Creek provides not just expanded access to care for the region, but also a potential catalyst for nearby spin-off development.

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