PR firm opening office downtown


Office space makes up one part of the mixed-use Waters Center, a six-story building in downtown Grand Rapids. Photo via

A public relations firm based on the east side of the state is opening an office downtown.

Farmington Hills-based Marx Layne & Company, which also offers marketing services, said today it will open a branch on Friday inside Waters Center, at 161 Ottawa Ave. NW.

The office — which will be staffed by employees from the Farmington Hills location and directed by the company’s current leadership — will support the firm’s media relations, community relations and stakeholder engagement in the region and statewide.

“We’re excited about being part of the West Michigan community and see tremendous opportunity to offer our full range of communications services to businesses seeking a statewide reach,” said Michael Layne, president, Marx Layne & Company.

Layne said the firm opened the office to better serve three major clients with a West Michigan presence: “the nation’s largest retailer, one of the nation’s top five financial institutions and one of the world’s largest non-alcoholic beverage companies.”

He said the firm could have located anywhere in West Michigan but chose Waters Center because it is an “elegant” historic building that houses the new 110-room Homewood Suites by Hilton hotel, where the team will stay when working in town, as well as the Jam’n Bean Coffee Company.

“I love the building and downtown Grand Rapids,” Layne said. “I love the energy. It’s a dynamic business community, and I think we’ll be able to offer services that will be well-received by that community.”

He said he hopes the firm’s physical presence in West Michigan will foster synergy between the firm's two Michigan markets.

“At first, we’ll primarily serve existing clients from that office, but we do plan to grow our business,” Layne said. “We’d like to think there’s businesses in Grand Rapids who’d like to reach southeast Michigan too.”

Marx Layne

Founded in 1987, Marx Layne & Company provides a range of PR and marketing services to clients throughout Michigan and nationwide: media relations; public affairs; special events; crisis communications; digital media; graphic design; web development; and more.

The firm serves clients in a variety of sectors: food service; professional services; energy; nonprofit; manufacturing; real estate development; education; health care; and more. 

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