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Published in Economic Development

Growth Report: Oct. 26, 2019

BY MIBIZ STAFF Saturday, October 26, 2019 08:47am

MiBiz Growth Report for Oct. 26, 2019.


  • Carroll Capital LLC, a Greenwich, Conn.-based family office, has acquired Grand Rapids-based Elevator Service LLC from owner Nate McFadden. Carroll Capital partnered with the management team on the acquisition. Elevator Service maintains and repairs elevators for clients in a market that covers Grand Rapids, Lansing, Ann Arbor, Kalamazoo and Battle Creek. The company looks to continue to expand its market share across Michigan and to add on other independent businesses in attractive markets. Terms of the deal were undisclosed. Ice Miller LLP and Baker Tilly advised Carroll Capital on the deal. Maven Group, Varnum LLP and Hungerford Nichols advised McFadden on the sale.
  • Iroquois Hoods Inc., a Muskegon maker of laboratory furniture with a focus on custom fume hoods, was acquired by entrepreneurs Rick Claypool and Nate Thornton. Michael Gross, who acquired the company in 2001, decided to sell so he could retire, according to a statement. Gross plans to remain with the business to transition leadership. He connected with Claypool and Thorton through Grand Rapids M&A firm Calder Capital LLC, which represented Iroquois Hoods in the transaction. Terms of the deal were undisclosed.
  • Traverse City-based Traverse City Whiskey Co. acquired New York-based Cocktail Crate LLC, a producer of non-GMO cocktail mixers, according to a statement. The deal will help Traverse City Whiskey boost the distribution of its non-alcoholic portfolio of products, which includes cocktail cherries. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Cocktail Crate founder Alex Abbott Boyd has joined Traverse City Whiskey to lead the company’s non-alcoholic product portfolio. The acquisition follows the opening of a Traverse City Whiskey tasting room in Ferndale. 
  • New York-based private equity firm Seaport Capital announced it made a strategic investment in Holland-based Rutherford & Associates Inc., a software provider for bottlers and beverage distributors. The investment through the firm’s $230 million Seaport Capital Partners V fund will go to support further growth in Rutherford & Associates “to take our business to the next level,” said founder Mike Rutherford. Along with Seaport’s investment, veteran technology executive Jim Clishem was named CEO of Rutherford & Associates. Management at Rutherford & Associates remains in place, with Rutherford moving into the role of chief technology officer.
  • TG Manufacturing LLC created a new division to acquire Grand Rapids-based A2Z Coatings LLC, a supplier to the automotive, material handling and gaming industries. The buyer will relocate the operations and employees to a powder coat line at a TGM Coatings LLC facility in Dorr. The company plans to enhance the operations with the addition of automation systems to increase throughput and quality on the existing powder coat line in a “new phase” for the group, according to TGM CEO Rich Achtenberg. Terms of the deal for A2Z were not disclosed.

Venture capital 

  • Grand Ventures led an investment round in CRE Simple Inc., an Oakland, Calif.-based fintech firm focused on commercial real estate. The Grand Rapids venture capital firm led the round with Fin Venture Capital in San Francisco. The company’s CRE Simple platform automates commercial real estate lending, resulting in faster processing of credit requests by digitally connecting brokers, borrowers and capital providers.


  • Gun Lake Casino expects construction on a $100 million, 72,000-square-foot expansion to begin in the coming weeks with an anticipated opening in summer of 2021. The expansion, which involves adding a new building to the south side of the current facility, will make way for an additional 450 slot machines, 12 new table games and a larger non-smoking area inside the casino, which opened in 2011. Gun Lake Casino also plans to double the size of its Stage 131 entertainment venue and add a pair of upscale restaurants with the project. Lansing-based Clark Construction Co. is serving as construction manager of the project, which was designed by Hartford, Conn.-based JCJ Architecture PC
  • Retailer Bill & Paul’s Sporthaus is expanding in Ada with Beyond by Bill & Paul’s, an outdoor lifestyle, clothing, footwear and accessories store. The new 3,669-square-foot store is under construction at 551 Settlers Drive, part of the redeveloped village center in Ada. The retail operation, a dba of Delta Victor Sporthaus LLC, is owned by Dan DeVos and Pamella DeVos, who acquired it from its founders in 2016. The company is working with Grand Rapids-based Integrated Architecture LLC and Grand-Rapids based First Companies Inc. on the design and construction of the new Ada Village store, which is scheduled to open next spring.
  • NaturaShield LLC, a Grand Rapids-based energy efficient roofing company, has relocated to the Cottage Grove neighborhood on the city’s southeast side. The company, in partnership with Rockford Construction Co. Inc. and nonprofit Amplify GR, will relocate to a 17,500-square-foot property at 1501 Madison Ave. SE. The building has been vacant for nearly 15 years and is 10,000 square feet larger than NaturaShield’s previous location.


  • Stamping manufacturer Gill Industries Inc. is exploring its options to sell its facilities on Bond Avenue in downtown Grand Rapids, where Spectrum Health has proposed a new $100 million project. The move comes as the manufacturer has reevaluated its use of the plant, formerly the home to Grand Rapids Spring & Stamping, which Gill acquired in 2014. In an effort to consolidate its office space, Spectrum Health this month said it was considering plans to construct a new administration and training building called the “Center for Transformation and Innovation” on properties currently owned by an affiliate of Gill Industries. The proposed center will allow for the consolidation of 26 independent leases, and will house 1,200 employees, according to Spectrum Health. 
  • Grand Rapids-based Third Coast Development LLC and Lansing-based Michigan Community Capital will seek local and state approvals to redevelop a building at 801 N. Rowe Street in Ludington into 65 apartments. The 100-year-old building was donated by Ludington-based Change Parts Inc. owner Ron Sarto and his wife, Dawn Sarto. If granted various zoning and financial approvals, the building will have studios and one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments. A small section of the ground floor could contain a commercial office or retail space. Once operational, Third Coast would manage the property. Grand Rapids-based Lott3Metz Architecture LLC is serving as the architect on the project. 

Health care

  • Spectrum Health opened a walk-in clinic in the Meijer Inc. store at 5500 Clyde Park Ave. SW in Wyoming. The clinic provides non-emergency care and will send summaries back to primary care providers and most insurance plans. Spectrum Health opened its first in-store clinic last year at the Meijer location in Hudsonville.
  • Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital and Covenant HealthCare in Saginaw expanded their joint venture that began nearly two years ago with inpatient rehab care. The joint venture added outpatient rehab, orthotics and prosthetics, rehab physician services, and the Covenant Center for Autism. Under the joint venture formed in late 2017, Mary Free Bed has provided care at Covenant’s 41-bed inpatient rehab unit. Covenant and Mary Free Bed earlier this year announced plans to develop a $40.7 million rehabilitation hospital in Saginaw.
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