Economic Development, Manufacturing, and Small Business & Startups

State awards West Michigan funds for economic development

September 29, 2012
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The state is awarding funds to a group of West Michigan organizations to support job creation, high-tech research and the region's medical industry.

The state said Thursday that three organizations have been awarded funds by the Michigan Economic Development Corp., or MEDC, the state's marketing arm: Magna Sealing and Glass Systems in Holland Charter Township; the Michigan Small Business & Technology Development Center in Grand Rapids and the Michigan Medical Device Accelerator in Kalamazoo.

The awarded funds "demonstrate how we have greatly improved Michigan's business climate and infrastructure, leading to more jobs and better lives for our residents," said Michael Finney, president and CEO, MEDC.

Magna auto parts

Magna Sealing and Glass Systems, a maker of advanced auto components and a division of Magna Exteriors and Interiors, was awarded a performance-based business development incentive of $1.2 million to deepen its commitment to West Michigan.

Magna plans to invest up to $10.1 million to expand its Holland Charter Township operations to develop, test and commercialize a "new sunroof technology for the automobile industry" and new technologies with automotive-glass applications.

The auto supplier anticipates the expansion will create about 177 new jobs over the new product development period.

Michigan was chosen over competing sites, and Holland Charter Township has offered support to the project in the form of a 12-year tax abatement.

Small business center

The Michigan Small Business & Technology Development Center at Grand Valley State University, or SBTDC, will receive part of the $3.2 million the state has allocated for the center and two other nonprofits to provide matching funds to technology companies receiving federal-research grants.

The center will also promote its program to encourage more early stage tech companies to secure federal funding tied to small business, defense and energy.

The center provides consulting services to growing technology startups.

Medical device accelerator

The Michigan Medical Device Accelerator will receive part of the $500,000 the state has allocated for the accelerator and two other industry consortiums.

The accelerator will receive matching funds for "a grant focused on building industries and connecting partners in the state."

The medical accelerator seeks out inventors, physicians and entrepreneurs intent on creating innovative medical devices.

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