DoubleTree by Hilton Battle Creek wins Governor’s Award for Innovative Tourism Collaboration

April 11, 2024

BATTLE CREEK, MICH – Battle Creek Unlimited (BCU), along with members of the board, the City of Battle Creek, and the Calhoun County Visitor’s Bureau were in attendance to accept the Tourism Industry Coalition of Michigan (TICOM) award for “Innovative Tourism Collaboration – Non-Traditional Tourism Partnerships” at the “Pure Michigan Governor’s Conference on Tourism” hosted in Kalamazoo, Michigan on April 10th, 2024.

The awards were created in collaboration with the Governor’s Office to boost the image of Michigan’s tourism industry and promote innovative collaboration. The DoubleTree by Hilton was recognized for its innovative approach to community involvement and partnerships throughout its current and future development. Key areas of focus for the award were philanthropic partnerships, training and development, downtown business collaboration efforts, and the focus on the project being an asset to the community as well as travelers.

Located in the heart of downtown Battle Creek, the space was formerly the McCamly Plaza hotel, which had been proven functionally obsolete. Rather than allow the property to further deteriorate in its vacant state, BCU and several community and state partners collaboratively rallied together to create a vibrant community asset. BCU established a for-profit entity called 50 Capital Ave. Development Corp. (50 CADC) and took ownership of the hotel in November 2020 after resolving a legal dispute with its former owners.  Given BCU’s mandate to boost Battle Creek’s development, it made sense for BCU to step in as a developer to renovate and upgrade the hotel for the benefit of the community. This marked a strategic shift for BCU, marking their first foray into the role of a private developer.  With the collaborative efforts of these community partners, the hotel has become a truly one-of-a-kind experience with an elaborate training initiative in the SUITE Collaborative, promotion of downtown businesses, local sustainability efforts, and community involvement. The property is set to open in August of 2024.

President & CEO of BCU, Joe Sobieralski, stated: “Creating a community asset requires more than just renovating a building – it demands a collaborative effort. We appreciate our partners and the community for their contributions to this project, which will positively impact Battle Creek for years to come. Thank you to the state and TICOM for the recognition for this hard work. We are eagerly anticipating the opening of the hotel to the community and visitors in August.”

The generous soft capital and grant contributions from our partners have played an instrumental role in our success and show the incredible amount of community support for this project. Thirteen organizations contributed over $50 million to make the project possible including Battle Creek Unlimited, W.K. Kellogg Foundation, 50 Capital Ave Development Corporation, The City of Battle Creek, The State of Michigan, Calhoun County, The Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), The Miller Foundation, Calhoun County Visitor’s Bureau, Battle Creek Downtown Development Authority (BCDDA), Kellogg’s 25-Year Employees’ Fund, Bronson Battle Creek Hospital Community Partners, and the Consumer’s Energy Foundation.

PHOTO:  Erick Stewart, Bridgette Jones, Heather Ignash, Sara Wallace, and Joe Sobieralski

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ABOUT BATTLE CREEK UNLIMITED

Established in 1972, Battle Creek Unlimited (BCU) is a private, non-profit corporation which serves as the economic development arm for the City of Battle Creek and manages the Fort Custer Industrial Park. The Fort Custer Industrial Park is home to over 80 businesses, including 25 international companies, and employs over 13,000 people. BCU’s mission is to build a strong community by driving strategic investment and job creation. Visit BCUnlimited.org for more info.

MEDIA CONTACT

Joe Sobieralski, President & CEO

Battle Creek Unlimited

www.bcunlimited.org

TEL 269-962-7526

sobieralski@bcunlimited.org

 

BCU’s Newsletter Winter 2024

BCU is pleased to share its Winter 2024 Quarterly Newsletter 

This edition includes:

  • From the President’s Desk;
  • WK Kellogg Co to Invest $44 million in Battle Creek;
  • Groundbreaking Ceremony Held for Next Spec Building;
  • SUITE Collaborative Launched to Develop Careers in Hospitality;
  • Roundabout Recognized as “Project of the Year”;

….plus other news and information. The newsletter is available to view as a PDF

Our goal is to provide useful information to people who live and/or work in Battle Creek. We welcome your feedback and story ideas. Email your comments to BCUNewsletter@bcunlimited.org. You can also follow BCU on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. 

Request for Proposals for Battle Creek Tax Increment Finance Authority’s Corporate Legal Counsel & Services

For Immediate Release – Wednesday, December 20, 2023 – The Battle Creek Tax Finance Authority (BCTIFA) is seeking a qualified attorney and/or law firm to serve as general counsel.  Please email your proposal no later than January 31, 2024 to:  ATTN:  Bridgette Jones,  jones@bcunlimited.org.   For more information about this RFP, please click here.

 

WK Kellogg Co expansion in Battle Creek will retain 170, create 43 high-wage jobs, boost state’s agribusiness industry

MEDC – December 12, 2023 – WK Kellogg Co was established in 2023 as a standalone company, resulting from the separation of the former Kellogg Company into two separate entities, Kellanova and WK Kellogg Co. WK Kellogg Co is focused on its founder’s original business – ready-to-eat cereal. The company employs approximately 750 employees – nearly one-third of its total North America employee base – in Michigan and will continue to be headquartered in Battle Creek, where it has spent the past 117 years as Kellogg Company.

In 2021, Kellogg Company announced that by the end of 2023, it would move production of some of its Battle Creek cereal plant volume to its cereal production facility in Ontario, CA. This project would have idled two of the three lines currently operating in Battle Creek.

Recently, WK Kellogg Co leaders decided to retain that volume at its Battle Creek facility, where the company will drive efficiency through investment in more modern technology, as well as train employees in high performing work systems, making them more competitive in their manufacturing network. These changes will result in the retention of approximately 170 jobs in Battle Creek and – along with the partnership and support of the state and city of Battle Creek – help to position the plant for future investment and potential growth.

The project is expected to generate a total capital investment of at least $44 million and create at least 43 new high-paying jobs – in addition to the 170 roles being retained – with the support of a $5 million Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant. The Michigan Strategic Fund also approved a 15-year MSF Designated Renaissance Zone in support of the project.

“We are pleased to maintain cereal production in Battle Creek, the Michigan community where it all began more than a century ago and where it begins again with WK Kellogg Co,” said WK Kellogg Co Chairman and CEO Gary Pilnick. “We are proud to be doing so in partnership with our employees and their union, along with the support of Battle Creek Unlimited, the city of Battle Creek and the State of Michigan.”

In addition to investing in machinery and equipment, the project will include training current employees to enable the high-performing work team model necessary to drive future success. In total, the project will retain and/or create at least 213 jobs, all with wages and health care benefits that are among the best in Michigan manufacturing.

In addition to the state grant, the Battle Creek City Commission approved, and Mayor Mark Behnke signed, the application for the Renaissance Zone and Battle Creek Unlimited has offered a $250,000 grant in support of the project.

“Battle Creek Unlimited applauds the leadership at WK Kellogg Co, the MEDC and the city of Battle Creek for their efforts to keep these positions in Battle Creek,” said Battle Creek Unlimited President & CEO Joe Sobieralski. “The manufacturing jobs at WK Kellogg Co’s Battle Creek facility are some of the highest-paid in Michigan. The MEDC went above and beyond to find a creative solution to support this project, which not only retains 170 jobs but also adds more than 40 new positions and sets the stage for future opportunities. We greatly appreciate WK Kellogg Co’s commitment to Battle Creek and are excited for what’s to come.”

“Mayor Behnke, the City Commission, and Battle Creek Unlimited have been committed to economic development innovations and investments that seek to grow and improve our Battle Creek community,” said Battle Creek City Manager Rebecca Fleury. “We are pleased to see WK Kellogg Co receive the state of Michigan’s support in retaining and investing in well-paying jobs in Battle Creek and are excited to see this historic company’s growth in ways that will bring the company, employees, and the community future success.”

Read the full release here for all of the details:  https://www.michiganbusiness.org/press-releases/2023/12/msf/

 

 

 

Industrial Partners USA to build second spec building on Watkins Road

Battle Creek Enquirer, Monday, Dec. 11, 2023

A rendering of a new industrial speculative building on Watkins Road. The first half of the building is expected to be ready for tenants next fall.

A rendering of a new industrial speculative building on Watkins Road. The first half of the building is expected to be ready for tenants next fall.

BATTLE CREEK — As the sun broke through the clouds along Watkins Road on Friday morning, Joe Sobieralski turned to face the crowd with a smile on his face.

“These are the days that are fun,” Sobieralski, president and CEO of Battle Creek Unlimited, told the crowd. “When we get to come out and turn some earth, it’s really fun.”

Equipped with hard hats, vests and shovels, local officials joined Sobieralski Friday to celebrate the groundbreaking of Industrial Partners USA’s second industrial speculative building in the Cereal City.

Local officials ceremonially break ground at the future site of Industrial Partners USA's new speculative building in Battle Creek on Friday, Dec. 8, 2023.

Local officials ceremonially break ground at the future site of Industrial Partners USA’s new speculative building in Battle Creek on Friday, December 8, 2023.

The new building will feature 504,000 square feet of industrial space and be built in two stages. Plans call for the building to have 32-foot ceilings, 6-inch concrete floors and 34 dock doors, with additional knockouts available for future development.

The total investment is expected to cost approximately $20 million. The first half of the building is expected to be ready for tenants next fall. IPUSA began work on the project the last week of October.

“This building will go a long way toward addressing the shortage of industrial space in Battle Creek, and this is a great place to do business,” Sobieralski said. “There’s tremendous demand for turn key buildings that are move-in ready and this one-of-a-kind facility will work to attract new investment to Battle Creek.”

The 34-acre parcel, located on Watkins Road along Interstate 94, just off exit 92, was owned by the Battle Creek Tax Increment Finance Authority, which is managed by Battle Creek Unlimited.

The site plan for Industrial Partners USA's second industrial speculative building along Watkins Road (Phases 2A/2B) is shown.

The site plan for Industrial Partners USA’s second industrial speculative building along Watkins Road (Phases 2A/2B) is shown. 

This new investment marks the second phase of a project that began in July 2020, when BCU sold 55 acres to IPUSA. The developer built a 270,000 square foot spec building on the site, which has since been completely leased by the animal health company Zoetis. The developer also sold five acres to Consumers Energy, which will be used for a future substation.

The development by Industrial Partners USA is a joint venture between Clark Logic and Great Lakes Capital.

Clark Logic is based in Portage and provides warehousing, real estate management and transportation and logistics services. Established in 1969, the company owns more than 45 properties with more than 2 million square feet of space in Calhoun, Kalamazoo and St. Joseph counties.

Great Lake Capital is a real estate private equity firm based in South Bend, Indiana. It has developed seven industrial speculative buildings in northern Indiana, which now house companies including Amazon, AM General and Borg Warner.

“We are excited to continue the momentum of our 270,000 square foot Phase 1 building in Battle Creek,” Jeff Smoke, managing director and principal at Great Lakes Capital, said in a statement. “BCU has been a great partner as we seek to add modern, cross-docked industrial space to the Fort Custer Industrial Park. This 252,000 square-foot building, which can be expanded to 504,000 square feet, will be completed in September of 2024. We are ready seeing significant tenant interest for Q3 2024 delivery.”

Battle Creek Mayor Mark Behnke speaks to attendees at the future site of Industrial Partners USA's new speculative building in Battle Creek on Friday, Dec. 8, 2023.

Battle Creek Mayor Mark Behnke speaks to attendees at the future site of Industrial Partners USA’s new speculative building in Battle Creek on Friday, December 8, 2023. 

Battle Creek Mayor Mark Behnke admitted he’s “struck by how large and impressive” IPUSA’s neighboring spec building is, and he expect the second building to be just as impressive and visible to all, “if not more.”

“This is wonderful for the Battle Creek community,” Behnke said. “With the past downturns and the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, I am proud to see developments like this moving forward with great success.”

In support of the spec building project, BCU partnered with the City of Battle Creek to upgrade Watkins Road, which provides access to the site. The road was resurfaced and widened to add a dedicated turn lane. The intersection at Watkins Road and Mercury Drive was also widened.

The road improvements were completed in 2022 at a cost of approximately $1.6 million.

Contact reporter Greyson Steele at gsteele@battlecreekenquirer.com

https://www.battlecreekenquirer.com/story/news/local/2023/12/11/new-20-million-industrial-development-coming-to-battle-creek/71855302007/?fbclid=IwAR2vF-L93YhqUavkGvKHToA3O7CGrfDLjnskLzJxbO8o0Nf7VS4MQhw5hJo

 

 

BCU’s Newsletter Fall 2023

BCU is pleased to share its Fall 2023 Quarterly Newsletter 

This edition includes:

  • From the President’s Desk;
  • DENSO to Invest $63 Million in Battle Creek;
  • United Federal Credit Union to Open Battle Creek Branch;
  • BC Food Reimagined Receives $3.3 Million Grant;
  • First Food Prize a Huge Success;

….plus other news and information. The newsletter is available to view as a PDF

Our goal is to provide useful information to people who live and/or work in Battle Creek. We welcome your feedback and story ideas. Email your comments to BCUNewsletter@bcunlimited.org. You can also follow BCU on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. 

Governor Whitmer Announces Over $73 Million in Support for Entrepreneurial Hubs Across the State

Thursday, November 9, 2023

LANSING, Mich. – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer joined the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) to announce that 27 organizations have been selected to serve as entrepreneurial hubs across the state of Michigan, providing comprehensive resources and support to the state’s small businesses.

The Small Business Support Hubs (SBSH) program received approval by the Michigan Strategic Fund in June, following the passage of the $75 million Small Business Smart Zones and Business Accelerators initiative by the Michigan legislature in February. The program is funded by a one-time appropriation using American Rescue Plan Act (“ARPA”) dollars to create and operate programs to support small businesses disproportionately impacted by COVID-19.

“Small businesses are the backbone of Michigan’s economy, and this investment to support their growth from President Biden’s American Rescue Plan will build on Michigan’s economic momentum,” said Governor Whitmer. “These 27 entrepreneurial hubs across the state will shore up our small business ecosystem, providing economically disadvantaged entrepreneurs and small businesses with the support they need to keep growing and expanding right here in Michigan.”

The program generated a high level of interest and demand, with a Joint Evaluation Committee reviewing over 80 applications representing a total of $275 million in funding requested. The 27 organizations selected will receive an average grant size of $2.7 million. While state law requires 20-percent of the businesses served by SBSH program to be minority-owned, an average of over 50-percent minority-owned businesses will be served among the applications selected.

“Michigan is committed to bolstering our entrepreneurial ecosystem by supporting the small businesses that drive our economy, as well as the trusted and expert partner network that serve them, across the state,” said Amy Rencher, MEDC Senior Vice President of Small Business Services. “By leveraging federal dollars, the Small Business Support Hubs will help us expand and improve resources across the state, as well as raise the national profile of the strength of our entrepreneurial community.”

Programming across the 27 hubs is designed to meet regional needs as well as economic competitiveness measures, such as resources for strategic sectors including ClimateTech and Advanced Manufacturing. The hubs will also offer targeted support to family-owned and rural businesses to drive resiliency in a rapidly evolving economic climate.

Resources available from the hubs will include one-on-one coaching, cohort-based learning and accelerators, mentor matchmaking, pitch competitions, networking events, access to capital, partner referrals, and statewide resource navigation.

Grantees by Region

  • In Region 1, the grantees are Michigan Tech Enterprise Corporation ($3,426,316), Lake Superior Community Partnership, Inc ($3,426,315), and Chippewa County Economic Development Corporation ($1,426,315).
  • In Region 2, the grantee is Traverse City Center for Entrepreneurship ($3,300,000).
  • In Region 3, the grantees are Target Alpena Development Corporation ($2,149,239) and Otsego County Economic Alliance, Inc ($1,136,859).
  • In Region 4, the grantees are Muskegon Innovation Hub at Grand Valley State University ($1,796,721), Start Garden Inc ($3,426,316), and Grand Rapids Nehemiah Project ($2,426,316).
  • In Region 5, the grantee is Central Michigan University Research Corporation ($3,426,316).
  • In Region 6, the grantees are Flint & Genesee Chamber Foundation ($2,366,356) and Economic Development Alliance of St. Clair County ($2,500,792).
  • In Region 7, the grantee is Lansing Economic Area Partnership ($3,426,316).
  • In Region 8, the grantees are Battle Creek Unlimited, Inc ($3,300,000) and Can-Do Kalamazoo dba Can-Do Kitchen ($1,926,315).
  • In Region 9, the grantees are Ann Arbor SPARK ($3,426,316) and Lean Rocket Lab ($1,400,000).
  • In Region 10, the grantees are Operations School ($2,815,115), Tejara ($3,426,316), Detroit Economic Growth Association ($3,426,316), Wayne State University Research and Technology Park in the City of Detroit ($3,426,316) and Velocity SmartZone ($1,800,000).

Multi-Region grantees are West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce ($2,500,000) and ProsperUs Detroit Micro Lending ($2,000,000), while state-wide grantees are Lawrence Technology University Centrepolis Accelerator ($3,426,316), Small Business Association of Michigan Foundation ($3,426,316), and Michigan Founders Fund ($2,926,315).

Among the awardees for Region 1, Lake Superior Community Partnership has provided support to its business community in Marquette County for 25 years. With 95 percent of businesses in Marquette County classified as small businesses, the $3 million in funding from the SBSH program will ensure they can continue to support the small business ecosystem in the U.P.

“We’re honored to be awarded funds to expand those efforts by adding boots-on-the-ground support to reach small businesses in the entire central upper peninsula region, elevating our impact through more customized support and small business grants,” said Lake Superior Community Partnership CEO Christopher Germain. “With a wide range of partners, including Innovate Marquette, Accelerate UP, Northern Michigan University, Keweenaw Bay Indian Community, Sault Tribe Inc., and SDBC Upper Peninsula, the next three years will further cement the region as a great place to start and grow a small business.”

“The Upper Peninsula is a great place to live, raise a family, and work,” said state Senator Ed McBroom (R-Waucedah Township). “These funds will help to make sure opportunities to work remain available. Our small businesses remain the foundation of our economy, and the MEDC support shows a commitment to fostering those opportunities. Ensuring future generations have the chance to remain here is great for the U.P. and the state of Michigan.”

In Region 10 and also providing state-wide support, the Lawrence Technology University Centrepolis Accelerator also received a maximum award of $3 million from the SBSH program. The Centrepolis Accelerator aims to fuel the growth of Southeast Michigan’s small manufacturers and hardware entrepreneurs by providing access to key resources including mentors, workshops, cutting-edge technologies, corporate connections, student and faculty engagement, events, workspace, and a collaborative community of peers.

“The MEDC Small Business Hub award allows Centrepolis, Michigan’s only dedicated hardtech physical product technology accelerator, to scale up our capabilities to help support entrepreneurs throughout the Upper and Lower Peninsula,” said Dan Radomski, CEO of Centrepolis Accelerator. “With this funding, we will commercialize more physical products, advanced materials and manufacturing technologies, maintaining our state’s leadership in this area and ensuring these products are designed, engineered, prototyped, and manufactured in Michigan.”

The SBSH funding will also enable Centrepolis to launch a Defense Hardtech Accelerator to develop technologies critical to national security and address domestic supply chain gaps.

“It’s an exciting time in Michigan, we’re investing in businesses big and small,” said state Representative Jason Hoskins (D-Southfield). “This is crucial infrastructure to truly compete for the best jobs and to strengthen small business and entrepreneurship in our communities. Not just in Southfield— but across the entire State, we’re delivering.”

https://www.michiganbusiness.org/press-releases/2023/11/over-$73-million-support-for-entrepreneurial-hubs-across-state/

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.

Industrial Partners USA Breaks Ground on Phase 2 Spec Building in Battle Creek

504,000 square feet of industrial space planned just off I-94.

November 1, 2023

BATTLE CREEK, MICH – Battle Creek Unlimited (BCU) has sold 34 acres of land to Industrial Partners USA (IPUSA) for the construction of a new spec building. The property is located on Watkins Road along Interstate 94, just off exit 92. This will be the developer’s second spec building in Battle Creek. IPUSA began work on the project the last week of October.

The new building will have 504,000 square feet of industrial space and will be built in two phases. The first half of the building is expected to be ready in autumn 2024. The building will feature 32’ ceilings with columns spaced at 50’ x 50’. Plans call for the building to have 34 dock doors, with additional knockouts for future development. IPUSA expects to invest approximately $20 million for the entire 504,000 square feet complex.

The 34-acre parcel was owned by the Battle Creek Tax Increment Finance Authority (BCTIFA), which is managed by BCU. BCTIFA acquired the property in 1997 and has since leased it for farmland.

This new investment is the next phase of a project that began in July 2020, when BCU sold 55 acres to IPUSA. The developer built a 270,000 square foot spec building on the site, which has since been completely leased. The developer also sold 5 acres to Consumers Energy, which will be used for a future substation.

IPUSA is a joint venture between Clark Logic and Great Lakes Capital. Clark Logic is based in Portage, Michigan and provides warehousing, real estate management, and transportation & logistics services. The company was established in 1969 and owns more than 45 properties in Calhoun, Kalamazoo, and St. Joseph counties, totaling more than 2 million square feet of space. Great Lakes Capital is a private equity firm established in 2005 in South Bend, Indiana. The company invests in office, industrial, retail, medical office, multifamily and mixed-use space. Its portfolio includes seven industrial spec buildings in northern Indiana, home to companies like Amazon, AM General, and Borg Warner.

Jeff Smoke, Managing Director & Principal at Great Lakes Capital, said, “We are excited to continue the momentum of our 270,000 SF Phase 1 building in Battle Creek. BCU has been a great partner as we seek to add modern, cross-docked industrial space to the Fort Custer Industrial Park. This 252,000 square-foot building, which can be expanded to 504,000 square feet, will be completed in September of 2024. We are ready seeing significant tenant interest for Q3 2024 delivery.”

“This new building will be a great addition to Battle Creek, which continues to have an acute shortage of industrial space,” said BCU President & CEO Joe Sobieralski. “There is a lot of interest in Battle Creek, especially given our proximity to the Ford BlueOval Battery Park site, just 14 miles east of this site. There is a huge demand for turn-key buildings that are move-in ready. This kind of facility will bring new jobs and additional investment to our region. We greatly appreciate IPUSA’s continued investment in Battle Creek.”

In support of the spec building project, BCU partnered with the City of Battle Creek to upgrade Watkins Road, which provides access to the site. The road was resurfaced and widened to add a dedicated turn lane. The intersection at Watkins Road and Mercury Drive was also widened. The road improvements were completed in 2022 at a cost of approximately $1.6 million.

Proposed building layout for Watkins Road Phase 2 Spec Building in Battle Creek.

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ABOUT BATTLE CREEK UNLIMITED
Established in 1972, Battle Creek Unlimited (BCU) is a private, non-profit corporation which serves as the economic development arm for the City of Battle Creek and manages the Fort Custer Industrial Park. The Fort Custer Industrial Park is home to over 80 businesses, including 25 international companies, and employs over 13,000 people. BCU’s mission is to build a strong community by driving strategic investment and job creation. Visit BCUnlimited.org for more info.

MEDIA CONTACT
Joe Sobieralski
President & CEO
Battle Creek Unlimited
www.bcunlimited.org
TEL 269-962-7526
sobieralski@bcunlimited.org

Greg Dilone, Jr.
Director of Development
Industrial Partners USA
www.industrialpartnersusa.com
TEL 313-461-8674
greg@clarklogic.com

United Federal Credit Union to Enter Battle Creek Market

UFCU secures space in The Milton for its first branch in Calhoun County

October 10, 2023

BATTLE CREEK, Mich. – United Federal Credit Union (UFCU) will open their first full-service branch in the Battle Creek market in early 2024. The new location will be in The Milton, located in the heart of Battle Creek’s downtown business district. The state-of-the-art branch will occupy 2,900 square feet of space and house seven full-time staff, including tellers, mortgage loan officers, and commercial lenders.

Construction on UFCU’s new branch in The Milton will begin in late fall, with the opening expected in the first half of 2024. The Milton opened in 1931 as the home of Old Merchants National Bank & Trust Company. After being vacant for more than 10 years, the building underwent a $38 million renovation and reopened in 2020. Today, 19-story building is home to 85 apartments and 32,000 square feet of commercial space along Michigan Avenue.

United Federal President & CEO Terry O’Rourke said, “Our growth and expansion into the Battle Creek community is a testament to United’s commitment and dedication to helping more people in this growing area. We are ready to work with our new Members and local businesses to achieve their financial goals through outstanding products and services, as well as with our team of experts who take the complexity out of banking.”

Joe Sobieralski, President & CEO of Battle Creek Unlimited (BCU) stated, “We are extremely excited to welcome such a strong and strategic financial partner to Battle Creek. United Federal Credit Union has demonstrated time and time again their willingness to help BCU continue its redevelopment efforts. We are thankful for their investment in downtown and their desire to partner with the Battle Creek community.”

“Our strength comes from knowing our Members better than anyone and from rolling up our sleeves with community partners like Battle Creek Unlimited to make the biggest impact possible for all.” said O’Rourke.

In recent years, UFCU has taken on the role of senior lender on several major community development projects in Battle Creek, totaling approximately $25 Million in commercial loans. These projects include the renovation of the DoubleTree Hotel (the former McCamly Hotel), Restore (269)’s redevelopment of the Anson Hotel, and the refinancing of The Milton. Along the way, UFCU has also partnered with local financial institutions like Kellogg Community Credit Union and Blue Ox to bring these projects to fruition.

UFCU was founded in 1949 in St. Joseph, Michigan. The organization has grown from a cash box in a personnel office to 35 branches in Arkansas, Indiana, Michigan, Nevada, North Carolina, and Ohio with $3.9 billion in assets. UFCU has over 186,000 members and more than 900 employer partners. For the past 25 years, UFCU has maintained a 5-star rating from Bauer Financial, one the country’s premier financial ratings services.

In addition to its strong financials, UFCU is focused on giving back to the communities it serves. In addition to the paid time off every employee of UFCU is provided to volunteer in their communities, the credit union invests more than $600,000 annually through community donations and sponsorships.

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ABOUT BATTLE CREEK UNLIMITED

Established in 1972, Battle Creek Unlimited (BCU) is a private, non-profit corporation which serves as the economic development arm for the City of Battle Creek and manages the Fort Custer Industrial Park. The Fort Custer Industrial Park is home to over 80 businesses, including 25 international companies, and employs over 13,000 people. BCU’s mission is to build a strong community by driving strategic investment and job creation. Visit BCUnlimited.org for more info.

MEDIA CONTACT
Joe Sobieralski, President & CEO
Battle Creek Unlimited
269-962-7526
sobieralski@bcunlimited.org

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