©2016 Michigan Economic Development Corporation

New Business Expansions to Create Over 3,500 Michigan Jobs

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Bridget Beckman, MEDC
(517) 335-4590

Companies Investing More Than $53 Million to Grow in State

Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today announced the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) is helping seven companies grow in Michigan and is backing a community redevelopment project in Genesee County. Combined, the company expansions are expected to create a total of 3,512 jobs and involve more than $53.5 million in new capital investment in communities throughout the state.

“The depth and scope of these projects highlights our state’s competitive business climate and outstanding workforce,” Granholm said. “Our strategy to diversify and grow our economy is working as companies—both domestic and international—are investing and creating jobs here.”

The eight projects announced today:

Aernnova Engineering, US: The U.S. subsidiary of Spain-based Grupo Aernnova will invest approximately $10 million to establish a new, state-of-the-art aerospace engineering center in Pittsfield Township. The project is expected to create 1,257 new Michigan jobs, including 600 directly by the company. A state tax credit valued at more than $18.5 million over 15 years helped convince the company to choose Michigan over competing sites in 15 states. Pittsfield Township is considering a 12-year abatement worth $304,000 to support the project.

Azure Dynamics Corporation: Canada-based Azure Dynamics plans to relocate its headquarters and certain parts of its development, testing and production operations into a facility in Oak Park. The supplier of electric and hybrid-electric commercial vehicle control and powertrain systems is expected to create 251 new jobs, 125 directly by the company. A state tax credit valued at more than $1.7 million over seven years convinced the company to invest in Michigan over competing sites in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Illinois and Ontario. The city of Oak Park has proposed an 11-year local tax abatement worth an estimated $55,400 to help win the company’s investment.

Credit Acceptance Corporation: The growing auto finance company plans to expand its headquarters in Southfield. The company’s $3.8 million investment is expected to create 1,108 new jobs including 506 directly by Credit Acceptance. Thus far in 2007, the company added 107 team members in its Southfield headquarters. A state tax credit valued at more than $4.6 million over seven years convinced the company to invest in Michigan over competing out-of-state sites. The city of Southfield will consider a three-year tax abatement valued at approximately $144,000 to further support the project.

Granvic Investments LLC: The newly created, wholly-owned subsidiary of PRA Company d.b.a. Vantage Plastics, a custom plastics thermoformer, will invest $2.7million to expand its operation in Standish. The project will create 136 new jobs, including 75 directly by the company. A state tax credit valued at $388,000 over seven years helped convince the company to expand in Michigan. The city of Standish is considering a 10-year abatement worth $117,000 to support the project.

MARS Advertising Prize Logic LLC: A joint venture between MARS Advertising and Prize Logic, the company plans to invest $1.7 million in a new Web-based promotions enterprise. The new venture, to be based at MARS headquarters in Southfield, is expected to create 193 jobs, 150 directly by the company. A state tax credit valued at more than $1.9 million over 10 years convinced the company to invest in Michigan over a competing site in Arkansas. The city of Southfield has approved a local tax abatement valued at approximately $18,000 to further support the project.

Sysco Food Services of Detroit LLC: The wholly-owned subsidiary of Sysco Corporation is considering investing approximately $18 million in a 90,000-square-foot expansion of its facility in Canton. The project would create 199 new jobs, including 130 directly by the company. A state tax credit valued at $2.2 million over nine years has been approved to support the project and Wayne County has proposed support through its Transforming Underdeveloped Residential & Business Opportunities program. The company would realize a savings of $452,603 over six years.

Thunder Bay Development LLC: Thunder Bay Development LLC is planning to invest $15 million to purchase and upgrade the former Thunder Bay manufacturing facility in Alpena. The companywould be operated as part of Allegheny Technologies Inc. Casting Service, an Allegheny Technologies Incorporated company. ATI Casting Service manufactures grey and ductile iron castings for wind energy and other markets. The project is expected to create 368 new Michigan jobs, including 150 directly by the company. A state tax credit valued at more than $1.8 million over seven years helped convince the company to pursue the Michigan facility instead of a site in Indiana. The city of Alpena has approved a nine-year abatement worth $1.6 million to support the project.

Genesee County Land Bank Authority: will use state and local tax capture valued at more than $20.6 million to revitalize and re-use tax reverted properties across the county. Redevelopment activities will include demolition, lead and asbestos abatement and site preparation for up to 704 tax-foreclosed homes and buildings in the city of Flint. Approximately 100 structures will be demolished and 130 sites will be prepared for new development. The redevelopment will be led by the Genesee County Land Bank Authority and include additional properties in 15 communities in Genesee County, including the cities of Swartz Creek and Mt. Morris and Flint, Genesee, Gaines, Fenton, Flushing, Forest, Richfield, Mt. Morris, Grand Blanc, Thetford Davison and Argentine townships. The eight stories of the vacant Durant Hotel will see a $20 million renovation and be converted to 109 two-bedroom apartments with retail and office space on the lower floors. The former Berridge Hotel will be redeveloped into 20 affordable housing and commercial units while the historic Tinlin Building adjacent will be redeveloped into four apartment units.                

“We are competing against 49 states and other countries for new investment and jobs,” MEDC President and CEO James C. Epolito said. “These expansions show that companies both large and small, from manufacturers to Web-based marketing firms, are choosing Michigan.”

In her 2007 State of the State address, Granholm emphasized the importance of making Michigan a global economic powerhouse in the 21st century. Since January 2005, the governor and the MEDC have announced the creation or retention of more than 197,000 jobs as a result of targeted assistance provided by the MEDC.

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation, a partnership between the state and local communities, promotes smart economic growth by developing strategies and providing services to create and retain good jobs and a high quality of life. For more information on the MEDC’s initiatives and programs, visit the Web site at www.MichiganBusiness.org.    

# # #