Plant and event news

Posted on Mar 12, 2020 :: Event News , Plant News
Posted by , Insight on Manufacturing Staff Writer


Marinette, Manitowoc receive harbor improvement grants

Gov. Tony Evers announced Marinette and Manitowoc have received grants under the Harbor Assistance Program.

The Port of Marinette received $29 million for improvements that will aid in production of the next generation of U.S. Navy ships.

Fincantieri Marinette Marine, a shipbuilder located at the port, intends to continue a site improvement project, which includes the construction of a vertical ship lift structure, dock walls, and bulkheads and harbor dredging to transition the shipyard to accommodate the construction of larger vessels.

The Marinette Marine shipyard employs 1,500 full-time employees and contractors, with another 1,000 suppliers and customers on site every day. Last summer, Fincantieri Marinette Marine received a $1.1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration program to help pay for shipyard updates.

The Manitowoc harbor received $2.2 million for improvements designed to support the manufacturing, assembly and shipping of cranes for the U.S. Navy. As part of the project, new loadout and rail platforms will be constructed at the City Centre, LLC property to handle oversized, overweight cranes.

The improvements will help Konecranes and Broadwind Towers and Heavy Fabrications manufacture enormous cranes for the U.S. Navy, Evers said. Once manufactured, the cranes will be tested and shipped fully assembled to the East Coast.

Marquis Yachts stays open as sale moves forward

After announcing it would cease production March 1 if a new buyer could not be found, Marquis Yachts says it plans to stay open and continue production.

The Pulaski-based company informed the state in late January that it would close, putting 344 people out of work in compliance with a state law about layoff notifications.

Marquis, however, has sent a letter to its dealers saying production will continue even though a sale has not been finalized. A letter signed by President and CEO Rob Parmentier said, “We expect that there will not be any disruption in the continued production of our yachts.”

The letter also said the yacht maker has no plans to shut down and is in the process of selling the company to a buyer who plans to operate “Marquis in the manner you have come to expect.”

The sale will be finalized over the next few months. Parmentier said the notice filed with the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development was necessary to protect employees.

“We have a substantial backlog of boat orders and have seen a high volume of retail activity over the past few months,” he said in the letter. “By all accounts, we are off to a strong 2020. We are continuing to market and sell our boats, and will, of course, continue to support you and your customers.”

Brown County STEM center installs $1.5M in equipment

The University of Wisconsin-Green Bay debuted $1.5 million in equipment that was recently delivered to the Brown County STEM Innovation Center. The new resources will help prepare the next generation of engineers and others headed into STEM careers.

United Kingdom-based TecQuipment manufactured the equipment, which was delivered and installed by provider LAB Midwest of Mequon. Jagadeep Thota, a mechanical engineering assistant professor for the school, oversaw researching, selecting and ordering of the equipment.

More than 100 pieces of laboratory equipment fill four labs and a machine shop in the STEM center. This includes a Stratasys 3D printer; turbines, which take energy from fluid motion and convert it to mechanical energy; a fluid flow channel, which allows students to better understand fluid dynamics; and a tension and hardness testing machine, which tests the hardness of materials and can characterize them for mechanical properties.

The equipment has real-world applications for the students using them, Thota said. For example, the turbines often are found in hydroelectric plants, and students can get hands-on experience with machines before entering the job market.

“The STEM area is very much in demand, and the job market is good in the area,” Thota said. “The equipment allows students to get practical experience for the workforce.”

Chem Design building new Marinette technology center

ChemDesign Products Inc. broke ground on its new 25,000-square-foot technology center in Marinette.

When finished this fall, the building will serve as the hub for ChemDesign’s 160 employees, making it easier for them to interact and collaborate. The two-story technology center will contain world-class, state-of-the-art process support and quality control laboratories as well as administrative and operational offices, locker rooms and a cafeteria. Keller Inc. is leading the building’s design and build.

ChemDesign provides a variety of manufacturing services for companies in the specialty, agricultural and fine chemical markets.

Endries International acquires Virginia-based manufacturer

Endries International has acquired Industrial Products Co. The company, which is headquartered in Lynchburg, Va., is a provider of fasteners and related production components to the original equipment manufacturing market. In addition to the headquarters in Virginia, IPC has warehouse locations in Mississippi, Nebraska and China.

IPC operates under ISO9001 and A2LA accreditation and provides a variety of service offerings, including on-premises vendor managed inventory systems. Scott Wolf, the owner of IPC, will remain with the company in a leadership position.


NEWMA’s President’s Cup golf event returns for third year

The NEW Manufacturing Alliance’s President’s Cup Scholarship Golf Scramble returns for its third year June 4 on the River Course at Blackwolf Run in Kohler.

The event pairs participating companies with a manufacturing president or executive in a four-person golf scramble. Confirmed participants for 2020 include Wilson Jones, president and CEO of Oshkosh Corp., and Jan Allman, CEO of Fincantieri Marinette Marine.

Eighteen gold-level sponsorships are available for $3,000 each. Opportunities include two company golfers pairing with a president or executive, hole sponsorship with a company logo and program advertisements.

Last year’s event raised $39,000 for NEWMA’s scholarship fund, which was applied to the $50,000 the organization supported in scholarships in 2019. To reserve a spot, contact Ann Franz, director of NEWMA, at [email protected]

Insight Innovation Awards to feature Dickman keynote

Mark your calendar and plan to attend the Insight Innovation Awards on May 14 at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, Fox Cities Campus in Menasha.

Craig Dickman, managing director of TitletownTech in Green Bay, will serve as this year’s keynote speaker.

The Insight Innovation Awards shine a spotlight on innovation in Northeast Wisconsin by honoring businesses and organizations with cutting-edge ideas that are making a difference in their industry or community. The event is ideal for anyone interested in innovation — business, community and education leaders as well as innovation executives, venture capitalists and angel investors. The afternoon will culminate with the presentation of awards
in four categories: Planet, Product, Process and People.

The awards celebration gets underway at 3 p.m., and a networking reception will follow. To register or learn more, visit