Today The Right Place, Inc. and the Ionia County Economic Alliance (ICEA), in collaboration with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) and the City of Ionia, announced that Ventra Ionia, located at 14 N. Beardsley Ionia, MI 48846, plans to expand in Ionia.

The company intends to purchase an existing 48,900 square feet facility at 1790 East Blue Water Hwy, Ionia MI 48846, adjacent to its existing facility in Ionia, Michigan. The resulting expansion will create 109 new jobs and spur a capital investment of up to $4,850,000.

This purchase will allow the company to move an existing portion of the business to the newly purchased building, freeing up much needed space in the main facility for a new Ford Ranger bumper program. The new program is likely to include assembly, paint, and/or chrome finishing.

“Today’s news wouldn’t be possible if not for the commitment and talent of our workforce in Ionia, a workforce that has been directly responsible for years of success and now an extremely promising future for our Ventra operation,” said Bill Beistline, Vice President of Procurement at Flex-N-Gate.

“We are also grateful to The Right Place, The Ionia County Economic Alliance and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, because it takes a special kind of partnership to create jobs and make expansion plans of this magnitude a reality. Our company is proud to operate 12 plants and two Development Centers in Michigan, all of them thriving, and there is no question the best days for our Ventra operation in Ionia are just ahead.”

Headquartered in Urbana, Illinois, Flex-N-Gate, the parent company of the Applicant, employs more than 26,000 people at 62 manufacturing facilities and multiple product development and engineering facilities throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, China, Germany, France and Spain.

The Right Place and West Michigan competed against several other states, including existing locations in Illinois and Indiana for the project. The Right Place worked with the company in collaboration with the MEDC to ensure the expansion project happened in West Michigan. The Right Place also connected Ventra to workforce development resources at West Michigan Works! to assist with talent recruitment and training.

“Ventra and the Ionia business community continue to be a vibrant contributor to West Michigan’s economic growth,” said Therese Thill, Vice President, Business Development, and project lead. “We are proud to support another growing business that will create jobs right here in West Michigan.”

The MEDC is supporting the new development with the approval of a $600,000 Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant.