The Right Place extends reach


The Right Place and the Montcalm Economic Alliance are contractual partners. Courtesy The Right Place

To stimulate greater regional collaboration and provide economic development services to businesses throughout Montcalm County, The Right Place has established a three-year contract with the Montcalm Economic Alliance.

The Right Place, a Grand Rapids-based regional economic development organization, announced on Jan. 12 the strategic partnership with Montcalm Economic Alliance to support economic development in Montcalm County.

The new three-year contract is The Right Place’s second county-wide service contract in the region, according Tim Mroz, marketing and communications vice president. The Right Place and the Montcalm county partnership and services are effective immediately, he said.

Through the contract with Montcalm Economic Alliance, The Right Place will provide a number of comprehensive economic growth services on the county, community and business levels. Several of the economic development services include: business attraction, expansion and retention; tools and resources for Montcalm companies; and marketing the county to new businesses.

Birgit Klohs, CEO and president of The Right Place, said the organization has a history of supporting Montcalm County with economic development assistance.

“This new partnership elevates the relationship to a much more strategic level,” she said. “Montcalm County has a solid economic foundation upon which we want to build.”

Rob Spohr, president of the Montcalm Economic Alliance, said local businesses will be able to use a number of programs and services offered by The Right Place, including relocation assistance and manufacturer training.

“We plan to leverage The Right Place’s 30 years of economic development experience to drive Montcalm County’s economy forward,” Spohr said.

Last summer, The Right Place developed the foundation of the new Montcalm countywide partnership when it established a contract with Greenville and the Greenville Area Chamber of Commerce, which was made possible by Bill Braman’s efforts. Braman is a Greenville chamber member and resident of the community.

Candy Kerschen, executive director of the Greenville chamber, said the initial service contract with Greenville was the first step ultimately leading up to the countywide partnership.

“Expanding this partnership to the county level strengthens the ability to drive long-term economic growth throughout Montcalm County,” Kerschen said.

As a result of the new partnership, The Right Place has created a business development resource position to support the needs of businesses in Montcalm County. Kathy Jo VanderLaan joined The Right Place’s economic development team in a business development resource role and will work with area organizations including the Montcalm Economic Alliance.

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