WALKER, Mich. — Speedrack Products Group is bringing more than 160 jobs and $64.5 million in capital investment to the City of Walker with a new manufacturing facility.
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer was at the groundbreaking ceremony Monday afternoon.
“This groundbreaking is just another reminder that the ingenuity and innovation of our incredible business community here in Michigan is truly unmatched,” the governor said speaking to a crowd of Walker community leaders.
“Because a recovery without a robust business investment and environment would be incomplete.”
The MEDC is supporting the expansion with the approval of an $820,000 Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant.
“It's going to be our world headquarters," said Speedrack Products president Eric Quist Monday.
"Indiana, and Illinois, and some other states were offering incentives, but I just felt that the strong workforce in this area and a skill set that we need is going to be right here.”
Speedrack will be hiring more than 160 people in phase 1 of hiring, with another 100 jobs expected during phase 2.
The plan is to have the facility completed by around March of 2022.
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The pallet racking and storage company is expanding to 3060 South Industrial Drive NW.
Headquartered in Sparta, Speedrack has manufactured all of its products in Michigan between two industrial sites over the past 20 years.
Three hundred people are currently employed at the existing facilities.
E-commerce serves as one of Speedrack's largest growth markets, with customers including Amazon, GAP, Chewy and more.
Other consumer goods market customers include Ford, GM, Medline, Caterpillar and the furniture industry.
To meet growing demand from these customers, the company's upcoming Walker facility will offer 275,000 square feet of additional manufacturing space.
"Our customers, particularly those in the e-commerce industry, have seen a significant increase in sales over the last several years, and so Speedrack has invested and grown in order to support that growth," said the company's president, Eric Quist. "We recognized that if we were going to continue to meet this new demand, we needed to expand our manufacturing footprint."
The Right Place worked closely with Speedrack, the MEDC and the city of Walker to ensure the company continued its growth in the region rather than out of state.
Walker city officials also approved a P.A. 198 tax abatement in support of the expansion.
"Speedrack Products' investment in Walker will create important jobs in our manufacturing sector and help us continue our economic jump-start and put Michigan back to work," Whitmer said. "This new facility strengthens Speedrack's presence in West Michigan and further underscores the importance of our state's talented manufacturing workforce. With the help of companies like Speedrack, we can build back our state's economy stronger than ever before."