In today's meeting of the Michigan Strategic Fund (MSF) board, the board approved an additional $1.5 million in grant funding to support Industry 4.0 awareness and preparedness and increase technology adoption, with six nonprofit organizations approved by MSF to administer the grant funding across the state. The Industry 4.0 Technology Implementation Grant program provides assistance to small manufacturers looking to adopt Industry 4.0 (I4.0) technologies and in turn, make transformational change to business, process and culture.
Since the launch of the I4.0 Implementation grants in May 2022, the regional partners have awarded 95 grants totaling over $2.2 million of the $2.55 million of available grant dollars. The allocated funds were awarded to small manufacturers in all 10 regions of the state, across 40 counties.
To date, the grant program has played a major role in helping small and medium-sized manufacturers adopt and implement key Industry 4.0 technologies. For example, Becker Metal Works, one of the Industry 4.0 grant awardees announced earlier this month, received a $25,000 grant to purchase a wax 3D printer for its foundry. Based in St. Clair, Becker Metal Works provides investment castings to the medical, energy, machine tool, food process, chemical and defense industries.
“We have been including Industry 4.0 equipment in our strategic plan for several years and with this funding, we are able to take that next step,” said Becker Quality Systems/Compliance Assurance Professional Erica A. Guice. “Since we started our first production run, we have not had castings look this near-perfect in decades. We look forward to increasing our production by receiving better raw materials and beginning rapid prototyping and advanced manufacturing for other clients.”
In addition to the $1.5 million in grant funding approved, the board also authorized another $1.5 million to be allocated based on statewide demand, bringing the total support to $3 million.
These grants build on the overall Industry 4.0 initiative that MEDC launched in 2020 in partnership with Automation Alley and Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center to help small and mid-sized manufacturers prepare for the future of manufacturing. The initiative includes efforts to drive awareness statewide on the importance of I4.0 readiness and technical support to help small to medium-sized manufacturers.
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 www.MichiganBusiness.org. For Pure Michigan® tourism information, your trip begins at www.michigan.org. Join the conversation on: Facebook Instagram LinkedIn, and Twitter.
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