Grand Rapids-based Axis Company makes factory automation systems for manufacturers. Courtesy The Right Place
A manufacturer of factory automation systems plans to invest $4 million in its operation in the area.
Walker-based Axis Company, at 2680 Elmridge Dr. NW, designs, programs and builds robotic automation and assembly equipment for a wide range of manufacturers and industries.
The company is forecasting growth and expects to hire 50 employees over the next three years across various high-tech and skilled positions, according to The Right Place last week.
After exploring several options for a second location, including an out-of-state option closer to a major customer, The Right Place, a Grand Rapids-based economic development nonprofit, said it and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, or MEDC, built a business case to ensure the investment occurred in Kent County.
Although several properties in the Midwest were being reviewed, the company felt that staying in Walker has benefits, including a strong advanced technology workforce, according to The Right Place.
“Robotics and automated production technology companies like Axis are innovating the future of manufacturing and providing quality jobs in our community,” said Jen Wangler, business development manager and project lead, The Right Place.
“Our high-tech and skilled labor workforce is a desirable trait to fuel Axis’s continued growth.”
The MEDC is supporting the project with a $400,000 Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant, as well as $125,000 from the Michigan New Jobs Training Program.
Axis Company says its team of engineers and machine builders have decades of automation experience, spanning hundreds of projects and thousands of automation configurations.