June 2017 Issue
Mighty Market: Fruit Processors Expand Sales Overseas
With a population of more than 1.3 billion, China is an attractive market for many companies. Include local fruit processors among those who see the potential.
Brent Bradley, vice president of sales and marketing at Graceland, said his company’s China efforts actually started in 1999, but really ramped up more recently.
“We really focused on it four years ago,” said Bradley.
The figures bear that out. After shipping slightly less than one million pounds of fruit to China in 2012, Graceland Fruit exported nearly four million pounds of fruit in 2016. This year it’s on track for similar results, depending …
Out of Thin Air, A Way to Fight Plant Diseases
Pure Water Works' pull-behind ozone generator first concentrates oxygen by removing nitrogen from the air. Then a high-voltage electrical charge converts the oxygen into ozone.
Bill Siegmund makes the case that owners of Michigan vineyards and orchards need only to look to the sky for an ally in their fight against plant diseases and pests.
As founder and co-owner of Traverse City-based Pure Water Works, Sigmund sells pull-behind equipment that creates ozone from the air. …
TC Lab a Leader in Making Environmental Data Useful
With the help of updated software, SampleServe, a Traverse City environmental sampling and reporting lab, might someday know as much (or more) than its competitors and even the U.S. EPA about polluted sites around the country.
Started by Russ Schindler in 2001, the seven-person company travels throughout the United States to known contaminated hot spots to draw soil and water samples.
Many other companies do the same. What really differentiates SampleServe is its sophisticated software …
SBA Lauds Local Lending Institutions
A local financial institution is among the winners of the U.S. Small Business Administration lenders awards for fiscal 2016. The SBA District Director’s Award was given to Northern Initiatives, a nonprofit Community Development Finance Institution that provides loans to small business owners and entrepreneurs in northern Michigan.
“In February of 2016, we reached a major milestone – $50 million in loans to small businesses,” said commercial lender Chris Wendel.
The organization was chosen for exceptional …
Relieving the Cash Crunch (and Other Ways Venture North Helps Small Businesses)
By Ross Boissoneau
For Doyle Berg, the challenge was keeping pace with the well-drilling industry. For Hague Equipment’s Jerry Peal, it was maintaining cash flow, continuing to purchase equipment and meet payroll while awaiting payment on jobs the company had done.In both cases, they turned to Venture North Funding & …
Michigan-Grown Vines Take Root at Commercial Venture
Next year at this time, Tom Greyerbiehl hopes to have a new type of grapevine planted in his Benzie County vineyard.
It could come not from out-of-state nurseries where he’s purchased vines before, but from the local operations of Campbell Milarch Vines, LLC.
The Copemish-based venture, a partnership between Black …
The Tax Implications of Short-Term Rentals
Beautiful northern Michigan! Lovely surroundings, increased tourism and the proliferation of web sites such as Airbnb, VRBO, and HomeAway have led to a boom in short-term rentals in northern Michigan.
What, if any, are the tax implications of a short-term rental? The answer depends on a number of factors, including …
From Massive Warehouse to Mixed Use: Building 58 latest phase of redevelopment
Piece by piece, The Village at the Grand Traverse Commons has been reshaping from a decaying, Victorian-era institution into a thriving community hub of commercial, residential and economic activity. The results are significant and keep growing as redevelopment continues.
The massive project is past the halfway point. Since work began …
Breaking Down the DOL's Final Fiduciary Rule
On April 6, 2016, the Department of Labor (DOL) released its final rule that redefines who is considered a fiduciary of an employee benefit plan under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) and the Internal Revenue Code. The final rule focuses on those who give investment advice …
Book Review: The Upstarts
The Upstarts: How Uber, Airbnb, and the Killer Companies of the New Silicon Valley are Changing the WorldBy Brad Stone2017 • Little, Brown • 33 Pages • Hardcover $17, E-book $16, Audio $20
In a nutshell – A deep dive into the rise of two disruptive companies that capitalize on …
Eye-opening Data Reveals Percentage of Struggling Families
Two out of every five people you see walking down the street in any town in northwest Michigan are not making enough money to meet their basic needs. They are worried about a car breaking down and not being able to get to work, missing a rent payment, or how …
Succession Planning is Successful Planning
Among the many positives of northern Michigan’s business community is the vast number of local and family-owned companies across our business landscape. That’s important as local and family ownership often brings various assets to a region that extend well beyond a company’s bottom line. Local owners tend to have more …