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Alcoa Howmet – Whitehall, Michigan

Advanced manufacturing providing optimized solutions for improved performance, efficiency and value

Eagle Alloy

Eagle Alloy, Inc. – Part of the Eagle Group of companies - Muskegon, Michigan

Serving a diverse customer base and utilizing lean manufacturing practices; one of the premier steel foundries in the country


Alcoa Howmet – Whitehall, Michigan

A commitment to environmental sustainability; keeping the health and safety of their employees, customers and communities a top priority

Culinary Institute

Muskegon Area First: Helping Local Businesses Flourish

The Culinary Institute of Michigan - Baker College's world-class caliber culinary learning environment


Alcoa Howmet – Whitehall, Michigan since 1951

Leading producer of complex investment-cast turbine components for the aerospace and industrial gas turbine industries

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Muskegon companies get $700K from state for worker training

Muskegon companies get $700K from state for worker training

arconic 1.JPG
Klaus Kleinfeld, the chair and CEO of Arconic and current chair and CEO of Alcoa explains the mechanics of a turbine engine Gov. Rick Snyder at the launch party for the name change from Alcoa to Arconic on Tuesday afternoon, Nov. 1, 2016 at building 10 in Whitehall, Mich. (Shannon Millard | MLive.com)

MUSKEGON, MI -- Nine employers in Muskegon County received more than $700,000 in Skilled Trades Training Funds from the state of Michigan for fiscal year 2017. 

The West Michigan Works! region as a whole received more than $5 million in training grants.  

The largest grant in the Muskegon County, nearly $128,000, went to Arconic, formerly Alcoa Howmet, in Whitehall. Arconic is Muskegon County's largest industrial employer, with more than 2,200 employees. 

The grant will facilitate training of 154 people, according to a release from Muskegon Area First.

This is first time that Arconic has received a Michigan training grant, said an Arconic spokesperson.  

"The funds received for 2017 will be used for robotics and other skills training for employees of our Whitehall facility," the spokesperson said.

The second largest grant, $120,000, went to Johnson Technology, also known as GE Aviation, in Muskegon.

Johnson Technology is in the process of hiring 100 employees, and adding a third manufacturing plant in Norton Shores. An investment of $14.5 million will include building improvements, equipment and machinery to convert a warehouse at 6120 Norton Center Drive. 

The company received an $800,000 performance-based grant from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation for the project. One stipulation of the grant was to hire 100 employees by April 1, 2020, bringing the company total to about 800. 

Johnson has already hired about 75 people, bringing its total to about 770, said Curtis Evans, human resources lead. 

"We've been doing quite a bit of hiring, and the grant will help defray expense of training our new employees to make them productive and safe," he said. 

The grant will help train 80 people, according to Muskegon Area First.

The company also received a property tax abatement from the city of Norton Shores for the building project. 

"GE Aviation - Muskegon is expanding in 2016, 2017 and beyond.  Our current employees are among the best in West Michigan and we work hard to select and train new employees to perform at the same level," said Ryan Berends, training/team coordinator for GE Aviation.  "This training grant will help us provide our new members with the skills they will need now and in the future to help meet our growing production demand." 

The fiscal year 2017 training grants went mostly to manufacturers, but also healthcare, construction and IT companies, including Mercy Health Partners in Muskegon, which received a grant for $81,000. Mercy Health is Muskegon County's largest employer overall. 

The grant to Mercy will help train 44 people, according to Muskegon Area First.

Between the nine Muskegon County grants, 257 current full-time employees and 233 new full-time, permanent employees will be trained. 

"This fund is an incredible resource for local businesses to invest in their workforce and increase efficiency and productivity by giving workers additional skills," said Ed Garner, president and CEO of Muskegon Area First. 

Many employers in the Muskegon-area also received grants: 

  • $127,638 to Arconic in Whitehall 
  • $120,000 to Johnson Technology/GE Aviation in Muskegon 
  • $100,481 to Scherdel Sales & Technology in Muskegon 
  • $99,672 to Anderson Global in Muskegon Heights 
  • $91,375 to MasterTag in Montague 
  • $81,000 to Mercy Health Partners in Muskegon
  • $72,375 to L-3 Combat Propulsion Systems in Muskegon
  • $45,271 to Occidental Chemical Corporation in Ludington
  • $33,198 to Meridian, Inc. in Spring Lake
  • $27,375 to Carter Manufacturing Co., Inc in Grand Haven
  • $21,600 to Lauren Manufacturing in Spring Lake
  • $15,200 to Multi-Lab in Spring Lake
  • $12,998 to WPI, LLC in Spring Lake
  • $9,000 to Pere Marquette Shipping in Ludington
  • $9,000 to Active Manufacturing Corp. In Spring Lake
  • $7,500 to Transfer Tool Products in Grand Haven
  • $7,478 to SyncWave, LLC in Scottville
  • $5,640 to Century Foundry, Inc. in Muskegon Heights
  • $4,320 to Shorescape Investments, LLC in Grand Haven
  • $4,082 to Dynamic Conveyor in Muskegon 
  • $600 to Valley City Metal Products, Inc., in Shelby

In 2016, 11 Muskegon County companies received training grants that came to about $482,000.





ED Update Newsletter 3rd Qtr 2016

Economic Dev Update 3rd qtr 2016.pdf 


Shellcast Wins Top Honors

October 19, 2016

Shellcast Wins Top Honors @ Investment Casting Institute Conference

Casting of the Year

The 63rd Investment Casting Institute’s conference was held in Columbus Ohio and Shellcast was awarded the top slot for a 

commercial casting in the annual contest. This year’s entry was a deep water diving helmet casting manufactured for an 

Eastern European company. The project involved a lengthy design evolution that required converting a problematic bronze 

casting design to a high strength but lighter weight 316 stainless steel casting. The ICI contest recognizes foundries that best 

demonstrate the benefits, design flexibility, and the problem solving potential of the investment casting process. 

This year’s recognition is the 2nd contest win for Shellcast in the past five years with three other entries placing in a top 10 


Innovator of the Year

One of the ICI’s newest awards recognizes technical accomplishments considered to be significant to the advancement of the 

investment casting process. Shellcast was chosen for its unique approach to shell room environmental control. The winning 

entry was for a rotary atomizer that uses high speed centrifugal force to induce large volumes of water vapor into the shell 

room allowing precise humidity control. Atomizers are commonly found in agricultural applications for chemical spraying and 

in some cases paired with robots in automotive paint systems. Shellcast’s approach allows controlled shell drying and has 

greatly enhanced process control. The system operates independently of the HVAC system using tap water with an installed 

cost 90% less than conventional steam-based systems. 


Shellcast, Inc is a certified small business located in Western Michigan and is now celebrating its 55th year in business. The 

company operates with systems that are registered to the ISO 9001: 2008 AS9100C quality standards with Nadcap 

accreditation for nondestructive testing.


Alcoa becomes Arconic

Major Muskegon County employer to get new name logo after scheduled split _ MLive.pdf

Webb Chemical Celebrates 53 years in Business

85-plus employees, 53 years: Muskegon Heights company by the numbers

(Emily Brouwer | MLive.com)

MUSKEGON HEIGHTS, MI -- Webb Chemical Service Corp. prides itself on being part of the Muskegon Heights community. 

The family-owned chemical distribution company was founded in 1963.

Every other year, Webb welcomes the community for facility tours at 2708 Jarman St. in Muskegon Heights. 

An MLive reporter and photographer took the tour on Sept. 29. Here's what they learned: 

2: The number of locations that Webb Chemical operates. The one is Muskegon Heights is the corporate headquarters, and has most of the companies employees. There's additional warehousing in Fort Wayne, Ind. 

2: The number of years it takes to be a fully trained employee at Webb. "It's really important for us to find quality employees who are going to stick around," said Kolin Convertini, plant manager, during the tour. 

8: buildings at the Muskegon Heights site. 

15: railcars are onsite at any given time. Each railcar can carry up to 200,000 pounds of chemicals. 

23: acres at the Muskegon Heights headquarters on Jarman Street. 

85: employees between two locations. 

700: customers in the Great Lakes region. 

1,000: The number of chemical products Webb stores and ships. 

6,000: square feet added to the original Webb building in 2011-2012. It's now Building 3. 

80,000: square feet of warehouse storage space. 

280,000: gallons of organic and inorganic storage on site. 

200 million: pounds of chemicals go through the facility annually. 

Webb receives products through rail and trucking, packages and stores it in warehouses, and then ships it out in its specialized trucks. Products include pharmaceuticals, chemical manufacturing, metal finishing, compounding, water/waste water treatment, investment casting, agriculture, food and fuels. 

The company is a member of the National Association of Chemical Distributors and the Chemical Distribution Network.


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