MSF approves support for business expansion in SE Michigan, regional grant funding to drive continued economic growth around state

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

• $2 million in grants to support regional Industry 4.0 readiness initiatives win MSF approval • Michigan Build Ready Sites program aims to give Michigan competitive advantage in attracting new businesses • Mayville Engineering to create 387 jobs, building on Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s Michigan Back to Work plan and underscoring Michigan’s leadership position in advanced manufacturing

LANSING, Mich. – Support for initiatives that will further boost Michigan’s competitive advantage as a place to do business and extend Michigan’s national leadership in advanced manufacturing have gained approval from the Michigan Strategic Fund, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation announced today. The board also approved an expansion by Mayville Engineering in Southeast Michigan, a project that will generate a total business investment of $51.5 million and create a total of 387 advanced manufacturing jobs.

“In Michigan, we remain focused on supporting and strengthening our workforce, creating new jobs and investing in key initiatives like Industry 4.0 readiness that will ensure long-term economic opportunity in the state,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “These actions implemented under our Michigan Back to Work plan will create a more resilient economy and help us build back better for Michigan’s residents, businesses and communities.”

Regional grants will help drive Industry 4.0 readiness in small and mid-sized manufacturers statewide

The Michigan Strategic Fund today approved nearly $2 million in grants for 10 nonprofit organizations around the state to provide regional Industry 4.0 programming and services to increase manufacturers’ readiness to adopt Industry 4.0 technologies. The funding is part of an MEDC-led effort to ensure that 50 percent of Michigan manufacturers – or 6,200 businesses – are prepared to adopt Industry 4.0 technologies at some level by 2025.

MEDC issued a Request for Proposals on December 8, 2020, soliciting proposals from Michigan-based nonprofits and Michigan-based governmental entities currently engaged in economic development activities to develop and implement regional activities that encourage innovation and increase manufacturers’ awareness and readiness to adopt and implement Industry 4.0 technologies.

Grants were awarded to the following ten organizations:

Grants will be used for a variety of efforts to further Industry 4.0 readiness within each specific region, including technology demonstrations and pilots, outreach and education efforts, readiness assessments and awareness-building activities. The projects range in scope from establishing regional consortia and roundtables to supporting pilot projects and planning, and physical infrastructure and equipment to provide sandbox opportunities.

Industry 4.0 is defined as the convergence of digital and physical technologies, including artificial intelligence, 3D printing, robotics, augmented and virtual reality, the Cloud and cybersecurity. Approximately 42 percent of Michigan’s current labor force could be negatively impacted by automation, and with MEDC’s strategic focus on retaining companies and fostering high-wage skills growth in target industries such as Advanced Manufacturing, there is a strong need for a multipronged effort to ensure Michigan’s small to medium-sized manufacturers adopt Industry 4.0 technologies.

These grants build on the overall MEDC Industry 4.0 initiative, which includes efforts to drive awareness statewide on the importance of Industry 4.0 readiness and technical support to help small- to medium-sized manufacturers adopt Industry 4.0 technologies through a partnership with Automation Alley and the Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center. Learn more at

The Industry 4.0 initiative aligns with MEDC’s strategic focus area of advanced manufacturing and continues to extend Michigan’s rich manufacturing heritage and technological know-how to develop the innovative, high-tech products of the future. With the fifth-largest advanced manufacturing workforce in the country and more than 13,000 workers employed in industries related to Industry 4.0 and automation – the most in the nation –this effort also secures continued opportunity and stability for Michigan’s manufacturing workforce for years to come.

Michigan Build Ready Sites Program aims to give Michigan competitive advantage in attracting new businesses

The Michigan Strategic Fund also approved $800,000 in funding to continue the Michigan Build Ready Sites Program in 2021. The program is designed to assist communities in their efforts to attract and retain businesses by increasing the inventory of project-ready industrial sites. The Michigan Build Ready Sites program will provide financial or technical support through applications from communities, nonprofits or local economic development organizations to fund activities that will increase Michigan’s inventory of development-ready industrial sites. Activities could include site development studies or site material development, site implementation or land assembly activities, and more.

Originally created in 2019, the Michigan Build Ready Site Program was intended to increase the inventory of industrial sites ready for development by assisting communities or other public entities with the development or enhancement of their industrial sites and make them ready to compete for site selection projects. To date, 59 grants totaling $4.5 million have been awarded for site readiness projects around the state, with 24 projects completed to date.

The Michigan Build Ready Site Program supports MEDC’s strategic focus of continuing to hone Michigan’s competitive advantage and be prepared to attract companies in key focus industries to locate and grow in Michigan. As MEDC courts companies to grow or locate in Michigan, there is a need for the development and/or enhancement of industrial sites to make them build-ready and competitive for site selection projects.

The need for more industrial site readiness has become even more acute as more U.S. companies are reshoring their business operations, particularly in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. For more information on the Michigan Build Ready Sites program and the selection process, visit

Mayville Engineering Company, Inc. brings new state-of-the-art facility, advanced manufacturing jobs to Southeast Michigan

Mayville Engineering Company, Inc., established in 1945 and headquartered in Mayville, Wisc., is a publicly-traded manufacturer that provides prototyping and tooling, production fabrication, coating, assembly, and aftermarket services for its customers. The company serves a wide range of industries including heavy- and medium-duty commercial vehicles, construction, powersports, agriculture, military and others. MEC employs 2,000 people across 20 facilities in eight states, including four facilities in Michigan that employ almost 400 people.

MEC continues to expand and needs additional production capacity in order to service new and existing contracts. The company expects to establish a flagship manufacturing facility in Southeast Michigan that will add capacity while also showcasing the company’s ability to deliver high-value and high-profile products. The project is expected to generate a total business investment of $51.5 million (which includes machinery and equipment, leasehold improvements, and annual lease/Opex costs) and create 365 jobs in Southeast Michigan within two years as well as add 22 new jobs at the company’s existing facility in Byron Center, resulting in a $2.5 million Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant. Michigan was prioritized over competing sites in the Midwest.

“Opening this state-of-the-art manufacturing facility later this year is an integral part of our long-term plans,” said MEC Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Bob Kamphuis. “We are pleased to be expanding our presence in Michigan, and selected Southeast Michigan due to the availability of a highly-skilled manufacturing workforce in the area. We are grateful for the support of the State of Michigan and look forward to investing in the facility.”

For information on careers with MEC, visit

“Our region and state have world-class talent and Mayville Engineering Company’s decision to bring their flagship operation center to the region reflects that reality,” said Maureen Donohue Krauss, president and CEO of the Detroit Regional Partnership. “The Partnership was proud to work with the MEDC, SEMCA-Michigan Works! and support our partners in Wayne County, Detroit Region Aerotropolis, and other local partners who were all critical to securing this project.”

The project aligns with MEDC’s strategic focus area of advanced manufacturing and promotes equitable, high-wage job growth by providing attractive entry-level wages, regular pay increases, significant benefits, and opportunities for advancement. As an employee-owned company, the organization is built around a people-focused workplace, with comprehensive training programs that will allow employees to gain experience in multiple specialties.

“The project and initiatives approved today build on our state’s advanced manufacturing strengths and attractiveness as a place to do business,” said Josh Hundt, Chief Business Development Officer and Executive Vice President at the MEDC. “Today’s actions reflect our continued focus on supporting projects and initiatives that uphold our mission of enabling equitable economic prosperity for all Michigan residents.”

The Michigan Strategic Fund also approved private activity bond financing as part of the Flint water settlement. To read the full announcement, visit here.

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.