MTEC SmartZone supports GreenForces Initiative with a start-up grant

5 local technology, manufacturing companies collaborate with Michigan Tech to target the aerospace and defense industries

Houghton, Michigan (November 18, 2013) – With aerospace and defense budget cuts, those industries are working harder to find solutions that keep America globally competitive and safe. As a result, the companies who service those industries also have to be more creative to deliver more for less.

MTEC SmartZone supports five local technology and manufacturing companies who are collaborating with Michigan Technological University to create a new company called GreenForces LLC. Together this partnership can provide industry solutions that are reliable, trusted, flexible and cost effective.

GreenForces delivers projects for the aerospace and defense industries, from design and prototyping to production. In addition to Michigan Tech, Keweenaw Economic Development Alliance (KEDA) and Houghton County, GreenForces includes the following Michigan companies:

  • GS Engineering, Houghton

  • IR Telemetrics, Hancock

  • Creative Composites, Rapid River

  • L’Anse Manufacturing, L’Anse

  • Calumet Electronics Corporation, Calumet

MTEC SmartZone’s investment in GreenForces is driven by the potential for job creation. As GreenForces generates revenue for these companies, the companies will create jobs.

GreenForces is managed by a board of directors that includes representatives from each of the companies. Together, the board conducted a national search to find an experienced CEO and business development specialist from the aerospace and defense industries. Their efforts were successful and resulted in the hiring of a new CEO, Scott Teigen.

Teigen brings extensive experience to GreenForces. After serving in the U.S. Air Force, he spent more than a decade working in advanced weapons for an international aerospace and defense company.

In his new position, Teigen is responsible for introducing GreenForces as an industry solution, while creating national and international visibility for the individual companies. “The strength of our combined talents and capabilities allows us to take an idea from prototype to production, covering every aspect of development and production for a customer,” Teigen said. “Our approach allows each company to focus on doing what they do best, while supporting and helping each other grow.”

GreenForces partner and GS Engineering Vice President Chris Coxon said GreenForces will positively impact partners by opening doors to new contracts. “This process is driven by us leveraging each other’s expertise as we approach potential clients,” he said. “Having such a strong and diverse organization allows us to bring unique solutions to industry.”

MTEC SmartZone was instrumental in getting GreenForces off the ground. The initiative is funded by the individual companies, Michigan Tech and a sizeable grant from MTEC SmartZone. In addition to providing the grant, MTEC SmartZone secured funding to cover the expense of AS 9100 certification for the companies, which is required to compete in the aerospace industry. “We are excited to help our companies with business development expertise that creates new revenues and new jobs in the community,” said MTEC SmartZone CEO Marilyn Clark.

Teigen has hit the ground running with GreenForces, working on branding and start-up sales initiatives. He will also attend national aerospace and defense tradeshows to reveal their new strategy.