business

Business
12:51 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

From farm to cocktail: New Lansing distillery to source locally

Credit Flickr - cyclonebill

As Michigan-made brews are flowing from taps all over the state this summer, a game-changer in the micro-brewing business is underway right here in Lansing. American Fifth Spirits aims to offer a variety of micro-distilled liquor to the Lansing community, as well as a historical milestone: it’s Lansing’s first distillery ever.

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Business
1:14 pm
Thu July 3, 2014

Bigger fireworks, bigger safety concerns

American Eagle Super Store is one of the Midwest's largest fireworks retailers.
Kevin Lavery/WKAR

We’re celebrating Independence Day as a nation tomorrow, and that means fireworks. Michigan relaxed its fireworks sales law in 2012, so there are now more roadside stands and large retailers hawking their wares.

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Arts & Culture
2:21 pm
Wed June 25, 2014

Hats off to Michigan-made Stormy Kromers

The Stormy Kromer draws a crowd of unique and devoted visitors to its store in Ironwood, Michigan.
Credit Courtesy of Stormy Kromer

While many of us are enjoying summer after this year’s long and harsh winter, others are using the season to prepare for the coming cold.

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Business
1:10 pm
Tue June 17, 2014

BWL Commissioner supports extension for GM Lark

Lansing Board of Water and Light General Manager and CEO J. Peter Lark
Credit Joe Linstroth/WKAR

The discussion over reforms to the Lansing Board of Water and Light has continued in recent days. One topic up for debate is whether or not to extend the contract of embattled General Manager J. Peter Lark. A BWL committee has recommended another year for Lark. However, some critics have repeated their view that Lark should leave after the utility’s botched response to last December’s widespread, storm-related power outages.

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Business
1:06 pm
Thu June 12, 2014

Social media helps Michigan entrepreneur land beer with Branson

Credit BeerwithBranson.com

We’ve all heard of 6 degrees of separation, the idea that everyone in the world is connected through links of acquaintances. Bugsy Sailor  believes that with social media, the degrees separating people are even smaller.

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Business
12:42 pm
Thu June 12, 2014

Michigan brewer part of mead "renaissance"

One of the offerings from the B. Nektar Meadery, Kill All the Golfers.
Credit Aaron Young/WKAR

Michigan is quietly carving out a place in the world of mead. Mead is an alcoholic beverage brewed from honey. Just like wine, it can be sweet or dry. It can be carbonated or still.

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Business
1:03 pm
Wed June 11, 2014

Picking apart the Silverdome

This forklift is one of the thousands of items being auctioned off at the Pontiac Silverdome.
Credit RJM Auctioneers

The Pontiac Silverdome hosted the Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, the Who, the Pope, Wrestlemania, a Super Bowl, and of course, the Detroit Pistons and the Detroit Lions. Largely unused since the Lions moved back to downtown Detroit, the Silverdome was sold in 2009 to the Triple Investment Group for about a half-million dollars. Now its assets are going up for auction.

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Business
12:50 pm
Wed June 11, 2014

Neighbors in Action: Hometown Housing Partnership

East Lansing based Hometown Housing Partnership attempts to lower the barriers to home-ownership.
Credit http://www.hometownhousing.org/

It’s Wednesday and time for our Neighbors in Action segment, where we feature people and organizations working to make our community a better place. Today we feature the Hometown Housing Partnership, an East Lansing based organization that promotes homeownership and offers financial assistance to homebuyers.

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Business
12:19 pm
Wed May 28, 2014

Volunteers enlisted to protect state from cybercrime

Lohrmann says that the need for an emergency response team was at the center of the Corps' creation.
Credit Flickr - marsmet tallahassee

Anyone who ever uses a computer gets hit now and then with e-mail spam or the occasional computer virus. Many are just minor hassles that try to derail our plans, but some do cause significant damage. Now imagine how often large companies and government agencies get hacked by those seeking to inflict harm. To address this, the state of Michigan is creating an all volunteer defense team, the Cyber Civilian Corps.

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Business
2:10 pm
Mon April 28, 2014

Fading down the back stretch: Michigan horse racing industry struggles to keep up

Mike Stommen of Hazel Park Raceway says you can come to the racetrack and study horses' past performances and 'make your own luck.'
WKAR/Kevin Lavery

Horse racing fans around the country are gearing up for the Kentucky Derby next Saturday. The storied run that kicks off the quest for the Triple Crown will bring thousands of people to Michigan’s three horse tracks. Many will place their bets as they watch the Derby via simulcast. They’ll also come to cheer on local horses and riders who come to the tracks to test their mettle.

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Business
12:40 pm
Mon April 21, 2014

BWL ice storm report delayed again

Louney attributes delays to a desire by the Community Review Team to dig deeper into the issue.
Credit Joe Linstroth/WKAR

There will been another delay in the release of the report reviewing the response of the Lansing Board of Water and Light to last December’s huge ice storm.

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Business
12:23 pm
Mon April 21, 2014

Entrepreneur rolls out green, three-wheeled delivery service

Yvonne LeFave says she decided to launch her business because she wanted to show people what's possible.
Credit Courtesy of Go Green Trikes

A new eco-friendly business will hit the ground peddling tomorrow. Go Green Trikes will employ electric-assisted bikes  to make deliveries in the greater Lansing area.

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Business
1:58 pm
Fri April 18, 2014

Saranac syrup-maker sticks to tradition

Last year, John Smith produced 361 gallons of maple syrup, compared to 250 gallons this year.
Credit Flickr - Wigwam Jones

As you drive west from Ionia, Michigan, you’ll come to the little town of Saranac. Its streets are lined with a bountiful number of large old maple trees. And this time of year, it’s not uncommon to see many of them with pails and spouts attached to collect sap for maple syrup.

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Economy
1:14 pm
Thu April 10, 2014

New MSU project expected to help create thousands of Michigan jobs

The Food Processing and Innovation Center is raising the funding for the estimated $5.5 million project. It’s expected to consist of a mix of federal and state dollars, along with a commitment from MSU and five industry partners. It will be located on Hewlett Road.
Credit Courtesy - Michigan State University


There are plans to build a new center here at MSU that, if realized, proponents say could have a substantial economic impact on the state of Michigan, including the creation of potentially thousands of new jobs. Current State's Joe Linstroth talked with Chris Peterson, an agricultural economist and the head of MSU’s Product Center, who says there are more than 600 mid-sized food processors in the state of Michigan. Many of these companies’ facilities are maxed out, meaning that if they want to create a new product, they don’t have the capacity to test the product or its manufacturing and packaging techniques to see if it’s economically viable.

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Business
1:00 pm
Tue April 8, 2014

Michigan peaches, wine grapes take hit in brutal winter

Mark Longstroth thinks the harsh Michigan winter will result in a 50 percent reduction in peaches.
Credit Flickr - nehavish

The sun may be shining and the snow may be melting, but the effects of this year’s harsh winter are still lingering. The ice and cold of the season damaged some of Michigan’s fruit trees.

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Business
11:39 am
Mon April 7, 2014

Business leaders update "Michigan Turnaround Plan"

Doug Rothwell, CEO of Business Leaders for Michigan, says Michigan has seen significant improvement in terms of a balanced budget and tax rates since 2009.
Credit businessleadersformichigan.com

An organization that includes many of Michigan’s top corporate leaders is making new recommendations on the way ahead for the state. “Business Leaders for Michigan” is a non-profit whose 90 or so members are among the top executives of the state’s most established businesses including General Motors, Dominos Pizza and Meijer.

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Business
1:51 pm
Tue April 1, 2014

Michigan social entrepreneurs seek profits and change

This year, Michigan Corps and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation are hosting their second competition for Michigan entrepreneurs.
Credit courtesy of michigancorps.org

Social entrepreneurship, where for-profit businesses seek to offer creative solutions to our society’s biggest needs, has become a rising trend across the country. Last year, Detroit was home to the nation’s first social entrepreneurship competition, which attracted more than $1-million in new investment for a diverse group of new businesses that focus on such issues as energy efficiency, affordable medical devices, and coffee roasting.

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Business
1:25 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Michigan Legislature considers state stock exchange

For 70 years, until the mid 1970’s, Detroit had its own stock exchange. It’s credited with speeding the growth of General Motors and dozens of other Michigan companies.
Credit Flickr - Thomas Hawk

Mention the phrase 'stock exchange' to most people and they’ll likely visualize Wall Street, the home of the New York stock exchange, the world’s biggest. However, smaller, regional stock exchanges are nothing new. A proposal to allow local stock exchanges in Michigan was recently filed in the state legislature. The aim is to allow citizens to invest in small, promising Michigan companies that may not qualify for a larger exchange.

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Business
3:37 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

City finance expert: Lansing ballpark plan a step forward

Eric Scorsone thinks the development project at Cooley Law School stadium represents a manageable risk for the city of Lansing.
Credit Flickr - mwlguide

It’s hard to tell with all the new snow, but we’re three weeks away from  the “Crosstown Showdown” home opener between the Lansing Lugnuts and the MSU Spartans. Yesterday, Lugnuts owner Tom Dickson and city leaders announced plans for a $22-million development at Cooley Law School Stadium.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:42 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

Proposal would restore tax revenue for Michigan communities

Fowler says that there are no more tax incentives for companies relocating to Michigan, but as former tax credits expire, it creates revenue in the state.
Credit Flickr - agrillifetoday


Fourteen months ago, Gov. Rick Snyder signed legislation eliminating the state personal property tax levied on business equipment. The move was heralded as welcome change by business owners who said the tax put them at a competitive disadvantage and inhibited job growth. However, local governments are worried about how they will replace the revenue that kept their vital services running. Now, a series of bills introduced this week in the Michigan Senate seeks to preserve that funding.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:25 pm
Mon February 24, 2014

Coney Dogs in The D... in Vegas

Chris Sotiropoulos (left) and his sister, Grace Keros with their staff.
Credit WKAR/Scott Pohl

  

Along with gambling and big production stage shows, Las Vegas is known for fine dining. Everywhere you look, you’ll find a restaurant with a different theme, many of them run by celebrity chefs. Travelers from Michigan, though, might want to consider a more humble spot to grab a bite in Vegas.

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Radio Made in Michigan
11:28 am
Mon December 16, 2013

Red Cedar project to feature market rate and student housing

Joel Ferguson
Credit http://trustees.msu.edu/

After months of silence, one of the Lansing area’s biggest development projects is back in the news. Officials say they are hoping for groundbreaking by late Spring for the $125-million ‘Red Cedar Renaissance,' formerly the ‘Capital Gateway.'

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Radio Made in Michigan
11:20 am
Wed December 11, 2013

GM’s first female CEO could face a call for employee raises

Credit Flickr - pinehurst19475

Yesterday, General Motors announced Mary Barra would become the company's next CEO. Barra is the first female CEO of a major U.S. auto company.

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Radio Made in Michigan
11:54 am
Mon December 9, 2013

Some Chinese MSU students mix business with learning

Credit https://www.facebook.com/NewOrientalMart/photos_stream

Imagine you were an 18-year-old American student, and you went off to study at a university in China that taught economics, biology and all the other subjects in Chinese. Then imagine on top of that navigating the legal and cultural differences to start your own business. For most of us, it would be a daunting challenge to say the least, and more likely too difficult to even attempt. At Michigan State University, some Chinese international students are up to the challenge.

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Radio Made in Michigan
10:40 am
Mon November 18, 2013

Shiawassee County gets its first business incubator

Lorraine Austin says the REV Center offers private office space and a message center for entrepreneurs.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

Start up companies between the Lansing and Flint metro areas have a new resource to help them get off the ground.  Baker College in Owosso is the site of a new business incubator known as the “REV” Center.

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Radio Made in Michigan
3:25 pm
Mon September 23, 2013

MI business advocate: biz health exchanges a 'solution without a problem'

Rob Fowler of the Small Business Association of Michigan thinks there's value to the consumer in the individual health insurance exchange.
Credit Flickr - stephanebenito

Many Michigan businesses have voiced concern and disapproval of the federal Affordable Care Act.  Twice before on Current State, we’ve explored the issue with one of the state’s key advocates for small business.

Rob Fowler is CEO of the Small Business Association of Michigan, based in Lansing.  He returns with his thoughts on the health insurance exchanges that will soon to be unveiled. Fowler isn't sure that businesses will benefit from them.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:29 pm
Fri August 16, 2013

Michigan small business reactions to Medicaid expansion

The passage of the Affordable Care Act would make more than 300,000 Michiganders eligible for Medicaid health insurance.
Credit Flickr

Beginning in 2014, much of the federal Affordable Care Act (ACA) takes effect. The landmark law aims to ensure that U.S. citizens have access to quality and affordable health insurance.  

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:22 pm
Tue May 28, 2013

Lansing business news with MLive's Angela Wittrock

Detroit’s Emergency Manager is exploring the idea of selling off artwork owned by the city to aid in paying off the city’s debts.
Credit Courtsey of Wikimedia commons

Mlive’s Lansing beat reporter Angela Wittrock joins us every Monday for a rundown of the latest news about the local economy, business and development. Today, she discusses the Michigan Flyer-AirRide motorcoach service, Detroit’s finical issues and the loss of current Bank of America customer perks. 

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:19 pm
Wed May 8, 2013

Retailers push internet sales tax

There’s movement in both Lansing and Washington D.C. toward what many call a “leveling of the playing field” regarding sales taxes.  A pair of measures dubbed “The Main Street Fairness” bill is currently being debated in the Michigan House.  The proposal would collect a 6% Michigan sales tax on purchases from out of state internet retailers at the point of sale. And on Monday, the U.S. Senate widely approved a measure that would empower states to do just that.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:02 pm
Mon April 29, 2013

Jackson County Oil Boom Pits Economics, Environment

A huge crude oil field was discovered near Brooklyn, MI four years ago. Jackson County leads the state in oil production.
Kevin Lavery WKAR

Michigan has made huge investments to develop alternative energy sources such as wind, solar and biomass.  But like the rest of the country, Michigan is still a primarily fossil fuel-driven economy.  Crude oil is big business in Michigan, especially in Jackson County.  In 2012, more than 1.2 million barrels were produced there, which is three times more than any other county.

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