Making It in Northern Michigan: Hayes Manufacturing

Not all business marriages work. However, the purchase nearly a year ago of Hayes Manufacturing in Fife Lake by the much larger CK Power in St. Louis seems to be doing just fine. There are concrete reasons for that. First, this is not a case of...

Progressive Business Strategies Pay Off for Strata Design

The middle of the 2007-2009 Great Recession seems like a uniquely poor time to buy a business, especially one related to construction. Undaunted, Tyler Cerny bought Traverse City-based Strata Design, a commercial cabinet and countertop manufacturer. The gamble paid off. Armed with a materials science engineering...

Stormcloud Brewery a year-round anchor for Frankfort residents

Stormcloud Brewing in Frankfort has grown up fast. After seven years in business, it has an ultra-modern brewery that sports solar panels, charging stations for electric cars and the latest in lighting, heating and cooling technology. The decision to make such a major capital investment isn’t...

Making It In NM: TC lab doing its part to fight coronavirus

The 60 employees at Traverse City-based American Proficiency Institute are battling the coronavirus pandemic on three fronts: lab performance, finding a test and detecting antibodies. The institute's clinical proficiency testing programs are approved by the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), The Joint Commission...

Making It In Northern MI: Traverse Solar

Local startup Traverse Solar is out to capture energy from the sun. But instead of buying and selling solar panels, company owner Nathan Bildeaux and his two partners have designed, tested and are now marketing their own high-tech mounting system that automatically adjusts the angle...

Making It in Northern Michigan: Moomers Ice Cream

Hot summer days push as many as 2,000 ice cream lovers through Moomers' shop on North Long Lake Road. There are at least two good reasons for that: The award-winning ice cream is the perfect antidote to warmer temps and there are always new flavors...

Making It In Northern Michigan: Big Dipper Dough Co.

In two short years, something sweet on Cass Road has exploded throughout the Midwest. Big Dipper Dough Co., which produces egg-free cookie dough that can be eaten uncooked, is now available in 655 stores located in 13 states. So far, there are two flavors: Rocket Chip, which...

Roofing Company Becomes Its Own Incubator

Most roofers stick to the job at hand.  But Terry Umlor's entrepreneurial savvy took him through the roof. When Umlor, an Air Force vet, bought Springfield, Inc. in 1995, it was a traditional roofing business. Umlor's team tore off old roofs and put new ones on....