Bowers Aluminum Submits Plans for Expansion in Battle Creek

PRESS RELEASE

March 12, 2021

Bowers Aluminum Submits Plans for Expansion in Battle Creek

  • Bowers considers investing $7.8M in Battle Creek.
  • Expansion would create at least 17 new jobs.

    BATTLE CREEK, MICH Battle Creek Unlimited (BCU) is pleased to announce that Bowers Aluminum is considering expanding its manufacturing operations in Battle Creek’s Ft. Custer Industrial Park. Bowers Aluminum provides contract anodizing and fabrication services for aluminum products to manufacturing companies throughout the Midwest, East, South, and West. Their anodizing operations serve multiple sectors (automotive, healthcare, appliance manufacturing, office furniture, etc).

    Bowers will seek a local tax-abatement for this project. If approved, this project would generate more than $7,800,000 in investments at the site. In addition, Bowers would hire a minimum of 17 new employees over the next 12 months. There is a strong potential for more employees beyond the initial 17.

    “We are excited about the possibility of expanding in Battle Creek. We will put an emphasis on hiring local” said owner, Jon Bowers. “When possible, we will hire locals because it benefits both of us. Local employees add value to our overall economy. Also, if they are closer to our facility, it is more likely that they will stay and grow with our company.”

    “We are pleased that Bowers is considering an expansion here in Battle Creek. Bowers Aluminum is a local company that continues to show commitment to the City of Battle Creek. This potential expansion sends a signal to local companies and potential new companies that Battle Creek is the right place to do business.” said Shabaka Gibson, Vice President at Battle Creek Unlimited.

    Bowers’ current facility, located at 1401 Shiga Dr., began operating in Battle Creek in 2018. The proposed expansion of 70,000 sf would double the company’s footprint. This potential expansion would allow the company to expand its processes to include extrusion and fabrication. That would allow Bowers to do more business and create more local jobs.

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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.

    CONTACT

    Shabaka Gibson
    Battle Creek Unlimited www.bcunlimited.org gibson@bcunlimited.org
    Press Release – Bowers Expansion 2021 FINAL

Magna Cosma Casting Expansion Planned for Battle Creek, Mich., Facility

PRESS RELEASE

April 12, 2021

Magna Cosma Casting Expansion Planned for Battle Creek, Mich., Facility

Magna plans to invest $31.9M in Battle Creek, Mich., facility and create 68 new jobs.
Magna will participate in the BC TRAIN talent attraction program for some of the new hires.

BATTLE CREEK, MICH. Battle Creek Unlimited (BCU) is pleased to announce that Magna is considering expanding its Cosma Casting Michigan manufacturing operation in Battle Creek’s Fort Custer Industrial Park. Magna provides a comprehensive range of body, chassis, and engineering solutions to global automotive customers, including high-pressure aluminum castings from its Battle Creek facility, which contributes to lighter vehicles with reduced environmental impact. Magna will seek a local tax-abatement for the expansion. If approved, this project would generate more than $31,900,0000 in investments at the site. In addition, Magna would hire 68 new employees over the next three years, with starting wages between $15 – $35 per hour, depending on position.

“Magna has been a proud member of the Battle Creek community since 2013, and we’re pleased to have an opportunity to expand our operations and continue supporting our customers with great products,” said Bryan Bowersox, general manager of Cosma Casting Michigan. “In addition, this expansion is about our employees and the team. We strive to attract, develop and retain the best talent by providing a challenging and rewarding environment in which to grow both personally and professionally.”

As part of the expansion and additional jobs, Magna will participate in BCU’s Battle Creek TRAIN (Talent Retention, Attraction, and Inclusion iNcentive) program, which is a partnership between BCU and Battle Creek-area companies designed to attract employees to the city of Battle Creek. “We are pleased that Magna is considering Battle Creek as the site of their expansion. We are also excited to partner with them on the BC TRAIN program to bring additional employees and residents to Battle Creek. Battle Creek is a great place to do business and this announcement is another example of that.” said Shabaka Gibson, Vice President at Battle Creek Unlimited.

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation is supporting the project with a six-mill State Education Tax exemption estimated at $309,000 over 12 years. “Magna’s continued investment in Michigan means good jobs for our residents and further solidifies our state’s continued leadership in advanced automotive manufacturing and mobility,” said Michigan Economic Development Corporation Chief Business Development Officer and Executive Vice President Josh Hundt. “We’re pleased to work with our local partners and support this expansion as we continue to work toward economic recovery for all Michiganders.”

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Magna’s current facility, located at 10 Clark Road N., will be expanded by roughly 50,000 square feet to support additional manufacturing for the automotive sector. Before choosing Battle Creek, Magna considered other locations around the country. The company will be hiring a mix of engineering, project management, and skilled employees. The company plans to begin recruiting employees soon. Interested applicants can visit www.magna.com/company/careers.

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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.

CONTACT

Shabaka Gibson
Battle Creek Unlimited www.bcunlimited.org TEL 269-579-2576 gibson@bcunlimited.org

Battle Creek Unlimited and New Level Sports Ministries announce $2 million Washington Heights Entrepreneurial

March 8, 2021

BATTLE CREEK, Mich. – Battle Creek Unlimited (BCU), in partnership with New Level Sports Ministries (NLSM), has established the Washington Heights Entrepreneurial Fund, a $2 million program for entrepreneurial and real estate development projects in the historic Battle Creek neighborhood. The fund is supported by a $2 million grant from the Battle Creek-based W.K. Kellogg Foundation. Click here to read more

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

For Immediate Release – Tuesday, November 17, 2020: The Battle Creek Tax Finance Authority (BCTIFA) is seeking a qualified attorney and/or law firm to serve as general counsel.  RFP’s should be submitted no later than December 11, 2020 by 4:30 pm in a sealed envelope marked “BCTIFA Attorney Proposal” in the lower left-hand corner.  For more information about this RFP, please click here.

$2.1M EDA Grant for Tiger Room – Grant Will Support Accelerator for Food Companies

PRESS RELEASE, August 17, 2020 – The U.S. Department of Commerce, Economic Development Administration approved an economic development grant of $2,092,492 for the Southwest Michigan Accelerator Kitchen, located in Battle Creek, MI.  The grant, along with locally raised matching funds, will help with the $4 million renovation of the property located at 30 W. Van Buren St. in Battle Creek, MI.  Click here to read more

Battle Creek Unlimited’s Commitment to Equity, Inclusion, and Policy Change – Open Letter

Systematic inequities and racism are realities that exist in our society.  We hear, see, and empathize with the Black Community’s anger and pain.  As protests, conversations, and policy changes have elevated to an emotional turning point in our country surrounding the realities that exist in our Communities of Color, particularly in our Black Community, we must do more…..click here to read this letter in full and learn more about BCU’s commitment to equity, inclusion and policy change.

Battle Creek Unlimited responds to COVID-19 with $1.6 million in local support

PRESS RELEASE May 27, 2020

BATTLE CREEK, MICH – In the wake of the corona virus outbreak, Battle Creek Unlimited (BCU) provided approximately $1.6 million in direct support to 161 small businesses and nonprofits in the Battle Creek region, impacting 872 jobs. This financial assistance, in the form of loans and grants, was made possible by generous donations from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Consumers Energy Foundation, Chemical Bank, and Battle Creek Unlimited.
 
On March 19, days after Governor Whitmer’s executive order shuttered restaurants and bars, BCU announced its Emergency Loan Fund. Financed with $500,000 from BCU’s own revolving loan fund, the Direct Investment Fund (DIF), the Emergency Loan Fund was designed to provide an emergency cash infusion with favorable repayment terms, affording small businesses time to not only apply for SBA programs but also time to weather a multiple month shutdown. BCU also launched a COVID-19 resource website to provide local companies with information on available assistance.
 
As demand for loan requests from local companies grew, Chemical Bank donated $10,000 and BCU repurposed money from its Downtown Real Estate Improvement Fund, bringing the loan fund to almost $1 million. The loan fund provided 29 companies with loans totaling $955,000, impacting 363 jobs.
 
As the crisis worsened, BCU recognized that small businesses in Battle Creek were hardest hit by the pandemic. On April 16, BCU announced the COVID-19 Emergency Microgrant Fund for Small Businesses & Nonprofit Organizations. Funded by a donation of $250,000 from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, the microgrant fund provided cash grants to nonprofit organizations and small businesses. Priority was given to companies owned by women, minorities, and people of color as well as nonprofits whose mission serves those communities.
 
A $200,000 donation from the Consumers Energy Foundation as well as additional donations of $75,000 from the Kellogg Foundation and $75,000 from BCU raised the microgrant fund to $600,000. This enabled BCU to expand the program to include small businesses and nonprofit organizations in Springfield, Emmett Charter Township, Bedford Charter Township, and Pennfield Charter Township. In total, BCU made 132 grants, including 25 to local nonprofit organizations and 81 to small businesses owned by women, minorities and people of color, impacting 509 jobs.
 
During the crisis, BCU also supported the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) with the Michigan Small Business Relief Program. The MEDC provided the Southwest Michigan region with $800,000 to distributed among seven counties. BCU served as the lead organization for the greater Battle Creek region, collecting and vetting 96 applications. This resulted in $126,600 in grants to 16 businesses, impacting 183 jobs.
 
As companies begin to return to work, BCU will adapt to the new business landscape. Staff have been working from home since late March and business travel has been put on hold for the near future. At same time, BCU President & CEO Joe Sobieralski believes Battle Creek is well positioned for what comes next.
 
“We have two large projects which are eager to break ground as soon as possible. We have seen requests for information on available buildings and space remain steady throughout this crisis,” said Mr. Sobieralski. “Moreover, there may be opportunities to attract new businesses to the area as companies rethink their supply chains. Given our location, workforce, existing company base and resources, Battle Creek is well positioned to come out the other side of this crisis even stronger than it was before.”
 
“As we begin to reopen, and position Battle Creek for recovery, reflection sets in. I am proud of my team, thankful for the work the City of Battle Creek does, and grateful for the wonderful partnerships we have in this community and beyond,” stated Mr. Sobieralski. “I look forward to the day we can go downtown to enjoy a beer at one of the amazing establishments. Until that day, stay healthy, stay strong, and know this is just temporary.”
 

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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.

 

MEDIA CONTACT

Joe Sobieralski, President & CEO
Battle Creek Unlimited
TEL 269-962-7526

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