Defense contractor Borisch Manufacturing continues growth with plans to hire 150 new workers

Sharon Hanks

Borisch Manufacturing Corp. continues to win contracts in the defense industry, prompting the Kentwood electronics contract maker to seek another tax abatement for a $7 million expansion with plans to add at least 150 new workers over two years.

Daniel Hislop, the company's controller, says the request pending before Kentwood City Commission is the fifth time the company at 4511 East Paris Ave. SE has sought a tax abatement since 2001. Each time it has met its promise to the city to hire more workers.

"We've done very well," Hislop says of the company established in 1994 by principal owner Jonathan Borisch. "It's been pretty steady growth over the past 16 years."

The company's meteoric growth in the defense and aerospace industry is expected to push sales to at least $100 million this year compared to $74 million last year. Employment has risen from 600 to 630 just since April when it filed its abatement application with the city. Employment is expected to hit 750 by spring 2012.

"We really haven't had any trouble finding people," says Hislop, noting the pay ranges are from $10 to $40 per hour with full benefits. "There's a lot of talent out there."

He says the company anticipates spending about $2 million on property improvements at the company's 100,000-square-foot facility and a recently acquired 16,000-square-foot adjacent building. Another $5 million will be invested in equipment to keep two shifts running.

Among the company's products are a variety of circuit card assemblies, ruggedized displays, harnesses and cables and fully integrated turn key assemblies.

Source: Daniel Hislop, controller at Borisch Manufacturing Corp., Kentwood

Sharon Hanks is innovations and jobs news editor at Rapid Growth Media. Please send story ideas and comments for the column to Sharon at [email protected]. She also is owner of The Write Words in Grand Rapids.

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