Business expansions, community development project bring new private investment, jobs to Michigan

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

• Electrical services firm Feyen Zylstra adding second location in Walker, creating 100 jobs • German auto supplier MAHLE expanding in St. Johns, adding 25 jobs • Community development project will add pavilion to trail system in downtown Gaylord

LANSING, Mich. – Projects expected to generate a total of $9 million in private investment and create 125 jobs in Michigan have received support from the Michigan Strategic Fund, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation announced today.

“We’re working to spark business growth, revitalize communities and create more and better jobs for our residents,” said Jeff Mason, CEO, Michigan Economic Development Corporation, the state’s chief marketing and business attraction arm that administers programs and performs due diligence on behalf of the MSF.

“The decision by Feyen Zylstra and MAHLE to expand in Michigan rather than in other states underscores the strength of Michigan’s business environment and our talented workforce. It is thanks to many public and private partners that these projects are taking place, and we’re pleased to support those collaborations,” Mason said.

Feyen Zylstra is an electrical services firm focusing on the design, construction and maintenance of power, technology, infrastructure, and automation systems. The company was founded in a garage in Walker in 1980 and has grown to more than 700 employees and seven locations around the U.S., including four in Michigan. Feyen Zylstra needs to expand its technical workforce to meet increasing customer demand for data collection systems, customized software and plant floor connectivity. The company plans to purchase an additional facility in the city of Walker, investing $5.3 million and creating 100 jobs. As a result, the company has been awarded a $570,000 Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant. Michigan was chosen over competing sites in South Carolina and Tennessee. The Right Place plans to offer assistance in finding candidates for the new positions. For information on careers with Feyen Zylstra, visit

“As the markets and industries we serve continue to grow and evolve, we intend to lead the market by offering the most innovative solutions,” said Feyen Zylstra CEO Nate Koetje. “With manufacturers racing to reap the benefits of Industry 4.0, this expansion will enable us to provide specialized technical solutions and fanatical service to our rapidly expanding customer group. We are thankful for the support of The Right Place and their partners at the MEDC and city of Walker for assisting us with this expansion process.”

MAHLE Engine Components USA is an international development partner and supplier to the auto industry. The company’s parent, MAHLE GmbH, is a Stuttgart, Germany-based auto parts manufacturer and is one the largest auto suppliers worldwide. MAHLE plans to shut down its York, Pennsylvania facility and relocate assembly to its location in St. Johns. The company also plans to bring a new line from the recently-acquired Brainbee currently located in Italy. The project is expected to generate a total private investment of $2.9 million and create 25 jobs, resulting in a $186,000 Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant. Michigan was chosen over competing sites in Tennessee and Mexico. The city of St. Johns plans to offer assistance with finding candidates for the newly-created positions. Individuals interested in a career with MAHLE should visit

Rich Wolf, general manager, MAHLE Service Solutions, said the decision to relocate to St. Johns was simple because it is already a well-established, Tier 1 MAHLE facility. In addition, Wolf says the move allows MAHLE Service Solutions to have its industry leading brands located under one roof and a centralized location for efficient customer service and support.

“The move to an award-winning company facility will streamline efficiency for the Service Solutions division and allow us to continue to offer the same high level of quality and reliability that people have come to expect from our service equipment,” Wolf said. “This new facility reinforces our market offerings that provide outstanding customer value, less downtime and a low total cost of ownership over the lifetime of each product.”

The County of Otsego has been awarded $300,000 in Community Development Block Grant funds for its Trailhead Project which will add a pavilion to the existing 62-mile North Central State Trail located in the city of Gaylord. The project will provide accessibility to the trail system from downtown Gaylord, giving community members safe access to the trail to enjoy hiking, biking, snowmobiling, nature viewing and more. The pavilion will offer public restrooms, adequate parking and year-round access to the trail. The Trailhead Project has received two grants from the Department of Natural Resources totaling $620,000. The County of Otsego plans to make a contribution of $140,000 in support of the project.

About Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation is the state’s marketing arm and lead advocate for business development, job awareness and community development with the focus on growing Michigan’s economy. For more information on the MEDC and our initiatives, visit For Pure Michigan® tourism information, your trip begins at Join the conversation on: Facebook Instagram LinkedIn, and Twitter.