Proos Mfg. (Grand Rapids, MI) announced the completion of the company’s sale to company President Bryan Howard. In addition to the sale, Proos also made public its plans to increase manufacturing capacity and add jobs.
Howard takes over the role of owner and CEO from third-generation owner Amy Proos, who has been with the company for 37 years and is the first women CEO/owner of the nearly 100-year-old company.
Howard joined Proos in 2015 as general manager and became president in 2017. He has 20 years of experience across a wide range of manufacturing disciplines including operations, quality control, and business development. Since taking over many of Proos’ development functions, the company has seen continued growth in both sales and profitability, including additional sales of $10 million through the third quarter of 2018.
“Bryan has been doing so many great things for the company,” Proos said. “His leadership is giving me an opportunity to step aside at a time where I can enjoy more time with my family and being involved in other activities.”
Proos will remain part of the company’s leadership and has taken on the role of chief thought officer, where she will influence corporate-wide initiatives that focus on growth and operational improvements.
“Through initiatives set in place by Amy, the company has become a leading provider of manufacturing and engineering solutions for the material handling, automotive, industrial, and office furniture industries,” Howard said.
Due to the company’s growth, and by working with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, Proos has secured a $998,000 loan from the Michigan Strategic fund to increase capacity and employment.
The facility expansion includes the purchase of an existing 60,000-sq.-ft. facility at 2140 Oak Industrial Drive, where it will relocate its office and assembly functions, while increasing manufacturing at its current location. Proos, which currently employs 140 individuals, will add 25 employees over the next 24 months.
In recent years, Proos diversified its product and service offerings, from being a stamping facility for the auto parts industry to providing engineering services, sheet metal fabrication, welding, and wire harness assemblies to multiple industries throughout the United States.
“It is an exciting time in manufacturing,” Howard noted. “Our team has paid close attention to market trends and made adjustments where necessary. In this industry, it is important to diversify and be able to offer products and services for multiple industries.”