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State of Lansing Region Defense and Homeland Security Sector Revealed

LEAP and Miller Canfield Help Lansing Area Companies Make Sense of Defense Industry Contract Opportunities

LANSING, Mich. – The Lansing Economic Area Partnership (LEAP) unveiled a new report outlining the Lansing region’s assets in key defense and homeland security sectors at the Mid-Michigan Aerospace and Defense Industry Overview Summit held Feb. 25, 2020, at Lansing Community College’s West Campus. The event was hosted in partnership with LEAP member Miller Canfield Lansing, who leveraged the firm’s global network of defense experts as presenters. Miller Canfield’s team discussed traversing the complex ecosystem of defense contracting, which facilitates the distribution of billions of dollars’ worth of American-made goods and services for U.S. defense and homeland security priorities as well as those of U.S. allies around the world. The event focused on helping make sense of the defense industry for Lansing area companies interested in exploring federal contracts as a path to growth and revenue diversification.

“There’s no reason why the Lansing region can’t become a leader in the defense industry given its many assets. Miller Canfield is proud to partner with LEAP to explore how we can take this industry in mid-Michigan to the next level,” said Steve Arwood, CEO Miller Canfield Consulting.

LEAP was awarded a Defense Industry Growth Regional Grant from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) in 2018 to assist the MEDC and the Michigan Defense Center in better understanding and expanding key defense and homeland security industry growth sectors across Michigan. The report was created in collaboration with Meridian Township-based Madle Consulting.

The report considers federal funding priorities within the Department of Defense (DoD) and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Michigan’s national position in securing federal defense contracts. Michigan ranks 22nd in the nation with the majority of contracts held by small businesses. The report speaks to leading defense contractors in the region over the past decade as well as companies with capabilities in the state’s target growth areas of 3D printing, aerospace, advanced manufacturing, autonomous aerial systems, autonomous ground systems, cybersecurity and robotics. Additionally, the report includes a thorough SWOT analysis based on survey data collected from area companies in 2019, discusses how companies can identify and win DoD and DHS contracts with the dynamic array of support organizations from the regional Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) to Lansing Community College’s Business Community Institute to LEAP and the Michigan Defense Center.

“Our next steps at LEAP are to use this report as a tool for working with partners to grow, diversify and better connect the aerospace and defense cluster across Michigan. The Lansing area’s manufacturing prowess produces some of the highest quality products and materials in the world–when these goods fit the needs of the federal government and our armed services, we want to make those connections,” said Keith Lambert, vice president of Business Attraction at LEAP.

Attendees included current defense contractors, companies interested in becoming government contractors, higher education, support organizations and other stakeholders important to building a vibrant defense industry in mid-Michigan.

The full report is available at purelansing.com/defense.

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About LEAP

The Lansing Economic Area Partnership (LEAP) is a coalition of area leaders partnering to build a stronger community for all—working every day to grow, retain and attract business.