The Lapeer Development Corporation (LDC), established in 1981, is a community based, nonprofit economic development organization, helping businesses succeed by providing services tailored to help meet specific needs. We recently were able to sit down with their Executive Director, Patricia Lucas and learn more about what they are doing in the community.
Finding Space For Your Business
One of the main missions of the LDC is to help businesses find the perfect location for their business within Lapeer County. The LDC will act as a liaison between the public and private sectors to obtain the necessary assistance for a project, working as a partner in bringing the buyer and seller together. In addition, the Lapeer Development Corporation will work to retain, expand and attract key business sectors. One of the ways they do this is through a comprehensive listing of available properties on their website that is consistently updated.
Lapeer County is always looking for ways to attract young talent back to the region and demonstrate all of the positive attributes that the area has to offer.
“One thing we are currently working on through the I-69 Thumb Region committee is to identify people through social media who have an interest in this area, maybe they are from here, and try to get them to come back,” Lucas said. “Like many of the areas in the country, we are experiencing a labor shortage and we would love it if some of these people would consider coming home.”
Economic Club Of Lapeer County
One thing that is unique to Lapeer County in that it has its own economic club. It started in 1982 from an idea of 3 business people who were coming back from a talk at the Detroit Economic Club who thought they could do something similar in Lapeer County to help support economic development with the membership dues of the club. The first speaker was Detroit based restaurateur Chuck Muer and it has continued to blossom and have highly sought after speakers from business, politicians, and academics for the last 37 years.
“All the dues go towards economic development, and we are very appreciative of all the members we have,” said Lucas.
Enterprise Center Business Incubator
One recent success for a business in Lapeer County included Gallop Brush Company which is based in Imlay City, MI. The main product focus for Gallop is to produce products for the car wash industry. This includes everything from large mechanical brushes, entryway doors and more. As a family-owned business, they started through an incubator program and were located in the same building as the LDC utilizing a shared space and they are now on their third building and are completing a 30,000 square foot addition. “We are really proud of them and this is exactly what the incubator is for, to help businesses get started and grow and need more space,” said Lucas.
The Enterprise Center is the building that this is housed in and has been providing these opportunities since 1987 and has developed lots of stories like this and provided opportunities to local businesses wanting to grow. Each business has a different need. People often know how to make a product, but do not always know the administrative part of the business. At LDC, they are allowed access to equipment, conference rooms, incubator offices and so much more.
Lucas said, “it is continually rewarding to be able to see an idea start between 1-2 people and then grow into a much larger enterprise supporting the community and creating jobs.”
If you have a business looking to grow, attract talent to Lapeer or simply have an idea that you want to explore turning into something more, be sure to check out the Lapeer Development Corporation on Economic Development website at lapeerdevelopment.com. Lucas says, “We might not know the answer but we know where to find the answer” and they are always willing to help you figure out what is needed.