Two Kentwood Companies Plan Expansions

October 30, 2006
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KENTWOOD — Two companies in Kentwood are staying put and growing as a result of some help from the Michigan Economic Development Corp.

With a $1.6 million Single Business Tax credit from the MEDC, American Litho Inc. intends to invest $13.5 million to build a new production line, a project that is expected to generate 327 new jobs, 163 of them created directly by the company. Company officials had also considered Pennsylvania for the project but decided to establish the new line at its Kentwood facility at

4150 Danvers Court
. The city of Kentwood is considering giving the project a boost with a 12-year tax abatement valued at $800,000.

American Litho, a subsidiary of Konica Minolta Graphic Imaging USA, is a leading manufacturer of printing plates, prepress chemistries and plate processors for the U.S. and international newspaper industries.

Sean Nishimura, senior vice president of Konica Minolta Graphic Imaging USA, also announced Tuesday that Konica Minolta is relocating its corporate North American headquarters from Glen Cove, N.Y., to a Kentwood location at

5800 Foremost Drive

Nishimura said Konica Minolta has already made significant investment in Michigan, some $22 million to date. He said that at Konica Minolta the top priority is corporate social responsibility and that the company is committed to contributing to the community, region and state.

The MEDC also offered PureFlex Inc. a $4.2 million Single Business Tax credit to help convince the company to stay in Michigan. PureFlex, which manufactures high-purity hoses, fittings and advanced composite valves for the biopharmaceutical and chemical industries, was looking at a site in Williamsburg, S.C. The company plans to invest $7.3 million to lease and equip a new facility, a move that will create 225 direct jobs and 141 spin-off jobs, according to the MEDC.

The MEDC worked with Kentwood officials and The Right Place Inc. to put the package together and convince American Litho to choose Kentwood and the Grand Rapids area over the state of Pennsylvania, said Sanford Ring, the MEDC's chief operating officer.

"It's a big victory for this area," Ring said. "Konica Minolta Graphic Imaging's relocation of its corporate headquarters to this area is yet another victory."

Ring said that he, the governor and others from the MEDC visited Japan in May and met with a number of companies, including Konica Minolta, to encourage their expansion in Michigan.

Kentwood Mayor Richard Root said it's "a remarkable time" for Kentwood

"We're looking at a substantial number of jobs; with Konica Minolta and PureFlex, we're talking nearly 400 direct jobs for this area," Root said. "Kentwood is open for business, and we're real excited about our partners and their successes."    

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