DBusiness Daily Update: Bloomfield Hills Restaurant MEX Reopens with New Look, and More

Our roundup of the latest news from metro Detroit and Michigan businesses as well as announcements from government agencies. To share a business or nonprofit story, please send us a message.
Kitchen interior
The new MEX interior has a refined atmosphere that features warm earth tones, natural wood floors, sleek tile, and contemporary lighting fixtures. // Photo courtesy of MEX

Our roundup of the latest news from metro Detroit and Michigan businesses as well as announcements from government agencies. To share a business or nonprofit story, please send us a message.

Bloomfield Hills Restaurant MEX Reopens with New Look

Following an extensive remodel, MEX, the Bloomfield Hills restaurant from Peas and Carrots Hospitality, recently reopened with a new look and a reinvented culinary program.

The refresh, which comes after a successful decade in business, is designed to elevate the restaurant’s ambience and menu while still cooking up the Mexican-inspired classics that made it a local favorite.

“We’re fortunate that MEX has always been a beloved restaurant in the area,” says Zack Sklar, corporate executive chef and owner of Peas and Carrots Hospitality. “The old concept was doing very well, but the remodel will offer a much bigger wow” factor.

“We were a young company when MEX launched, and as with all restaurants, we grow — and grow up — over time. Our hospitality group has evolved, and we are heavily focused on elevating our concepts to evolve and meet the expectations and needs of our guests.”

Sklar also spearheads MEX’s new culinary program. While some favorites — such as MEX’s steak, chicken, and shrimp fajitas as well as its freshly made salsa — will remain on the menu, guests can look forward to reimagined dishes including house-made tortillas, whole branzino, chorizo empanadas, duck-carnitas tacos, and vegan corn-coconut tamales.

The beverage program, also revamped, features fresh-pressed lemon, lime and orange juice, signature cocktails mixed with white sangria, mojitos, and martinis, along with on-the-rocks and frozen margaritas.

Located on the southeast corner of Maple and Telegraph roads, the nearly 7,000-square-foot-space has been refurbished from top to bottom, both inside and out. With the help of Bethesda, Md.-based design firm Streetsense, MEX has been transformed to a refined atmosphere that features warm earth tones, natural wood floors, sleek tile, and contemporary lighting fixtures throughout, and the expanded bar area includes a floor to ceiling glass enclosure.

The new layout accommodates up to 220 seats, including 100 in the main dining room, up to 40 at the bar and up to 30 on the patio. The upstairs features a multi-use interchangeable space for regular dining service or private events with capacity for between 35-45 guests.

For more information, visit mexbloomfield.com.

Primitiv Group Collaborates with Detroit Native for New Cannabis Product

Primitiv, the cannabis company owned by former Detroit Lions wide receiver and Pro Football Hall of Fame member Calvin Johnson and Rob Sims (who also played for the Lions), today announced its collaboration with Detroit native Adonis Williams to introduce High Grade MI Powered by Primitiv.

Available now in select dispensaries throughout Michigan, High Grade MI comes in five flavors including green apple, blue raspberry, grape, lemonade, and strawberry. Each package contains 200mg of THC (10 gummies x 20mg THC per gummy).

Williams has been making edibles and gummies over the past decade. He got his start in the Michigan cannabis community upon his return to Detroit following graduating from Florida A&M University. His brand, Spurtz, is a real fruit, vegan, organic option.

“I’d been approached by a variety of other cannabis manufactures out there over the years, but nothing really felt right for me at the time,” Williams says. “Collaborating with Primitiv on this new line of High Grade MI gummies was an opportunity that really interested me, allowing me to create a product and distribute it in tandem with another Black-owned business which was important.”

Sims says: “We’ve been in contact with Adonis for the past several months discussing what we could do together and introducing his line of gummies in tandem with our sales, marketing, and distribution channels was a good match for us. We’re looking forward to this launch and hopefully more collaborations down the road.”

High Grade MI gummies currently are available in metro Detroit at Puff (Madison Heights), Quest (Whitmore Lake), Greenpharm (Hazel Park), Pleasantrees (Lake Orion), 315 North and Michigan’s Finest (Wayne), and Greenhouse of Walled Lake.

Grand Rapids’ Auxo Investment Partners Acquires Wisconsin Wire Manufacturer

Grand Rapids-based private investment firm Auxo Investment Partners has acquired SOS Manufacturing, a Wisconsin producer of specialized wire harnesses, cable assemblies, and complete box builds for customers in the computing, aerospace, agricultural, appliance, automotive, electronics, and food processing industries.

The addition, which expands Auxo’s growing wire harness and cable manufacturing platform, comes on the heels of several acquisitions, including Golden State Assembly (GSA), a vertically integrated, complete lifecycle wire/cable assembly and harness manufacturer, as well as Morgan Royce Industries (MRI) and TACK Electronics—both manufacturers of custom wire harnesses, cable assemblies and box builds. Nick Stoner and Dave Rogers, CEO and Sales Manager for SOS, respectively, will remain in their current roles.

Headquartered in Roberts, Wis., SOS manufactures specializes wire harnesses, cable assemblies, heavy power cables, cable braiding, and custom-designed, complex box builds. With decades of electro-mechanical expertise, SOS is known for its ability to integrate wire harnesses into subassemblies through state-of-the-art panel and box builds.

The deal comes as growing demand for cable assembly and electronic manufacturing designs drives industry expansion across the world. Additionally, steady growth throughout the sectors in which SOS operates, including computing and electronics, will enable the company to expand its manufacturing role with existing industry leading partners.

Consumers Energy Closes Karn Coal Plants in Essexville

Consumers Energy has closed two Karn coal plants in Essexville, northeast of Bay City, bringing the company one step closer to closing all of its coal plants by 2025.

The occasion was commemorated by a ceremonial lowering of the facilities’ flag and an event attended by generations of employees and retirees, union leadership, community members, including the Karn family, and representatives from Consumers Energy.

Named for former Consumers Energy President Dan E. Karn, the plant began operating 64 years ago.

“We are deeply grateful to the hundreds of employees who helped make Karn 1 and 2 an important part of our energy story here in Michigan,” says LeeRoy Wells Jr., senior vice president of operations at Consumers Energy. “The legacy of their work and these plants continues, as it will now serve as a reminder of what we are capable of accomplishing together when we prioritize doing what is right for our customers and for the planet.”

Detroit’s Mexicantown-Hubbard Communities Earn Main Street Accreditation

The Mexicantown-Hubbard Communities (MHC) in southwest Detroit has been designated as an Accredited Main Street America program by Main Street America.

The honor is in recognition of the district’s “exceptional commitment to preservation-based economic development and community revitalization” through the Main Street Approach initiative, according to Southwest Detroit Business Association Interim President and CEO Laura Chavez-Wazeerud-Din.

The announcement comes five years after MHC received a Main Street designation from the state of Michigan’s Michigan Main Street Program and signifies the district has met performance standards set by the National Main Street Center.

“Receiving Main Street accreditation speaks to our community’s hard work and dedication to building a thriving business district,” says Chavez-Wazeerud-Din. “Thanks to opportunities made possible by Main Street America, in collaboration with the city of Detroit and the state of Michigan, the Mexicantown-Hubbard Communities business district has seen some of its largest scale projects in decades.

“These projects have succeeded in raising the profile of Southwest Detroit while honoring its cultural and historical integrity, thanks in part to Main Street’s preservation-based economic development model.”

For more information, visit southwestdetroit.com.

Forbes Ranks MGM Resorts Ranks No. 1 Among Gaming Companies

MGM Resorts International, operator of MGM Grand Detroit, is the highest ranked gaming company on the newly published Forbes Global 2000 list.

Forbes has recognized MGM Resorts International’s “outstanding performance, impressive financial standing, and strong market presence in the gaming industry.”

“We are immensely proud to see MGM Resorts recognized as the top gaming company on the prestigious Forbes 2000 list,” says Matt Buckley, president of the Midwest Group for MGM Resorts International. “Here at MGM Grand Detroit, our team members are committed to delivering unparalleled experiences to our valued guests, and this accolade is a testament of their hard work and dedication.”

MGM Grand Detroit was the company’s first Las Vegas-style destination to open in the heart of a metropolitan area and the first resort-style entertainment destination built from the ground up in Detroit.

Great Lakes Shipping Maintains Consistent Performance Through May

The overall activity established by U.S. Great Lakes-Seaway shipping through the first month of the shipping season continued into May, with iron ore showing especially strong numbers. Iron ore traffic through the system was almost 1.6 million tons, an increase of 9.93 percent from the same period last year.

Overall, approximately 7.97 million tons of total cargo traffic have now transited the seaway system for the year to date, which is down slightly but consistent with the 8.2 million tons of cargo recorded for the same period in 2022. It should be noted that there has been significant variation in traffic across commodities and across ports, with some ports like The Port of Cleveland being especially busy.

“While the ebb and flow of economic fluctuations change the backdrop for trade over time, the constant is that Great Lakes/St. Lawrence shipping is always there to meet the needs of businesses and consumers,” says Bruce Burrows, president and CEO of the Chamber of Marine Commerce. “The enhancements at the Port of Cleveland are exemplary of the efforts of all chamber members to maintain a strong supply chain and keep marine shipping foremost among all modes of cargo transit when it comes to capacity, reliability, efficiency, and sustainability.”

Flagstar Bank Adopts AFSVision to Enhance Commercial Lending

Flagstar Bank, which has several branched in southeast Michigan, has adopted AFSVision from Automated Financial Systems Inc. in Pennsylvania to enhance its commercial lending lines of business while building on the relationship banking model.

AFSVision is a single loan platform for all commercial lines of business. It integrates with a financial institution’s ecosystem. Its suite of digital-enabling capabilities promotes seamless, end-to-end processing for commercial loans. AFSVision provides a globally available, unified banking experience, empowering financial institutions with 24/7, digital and mobile, real-time access allowing financial institutions to better serve their customers.

Hudson-Webber Foundation Awards $3.2M in New Grants to Community Programs

The Hudson-Webber Foundation has awarded new grants totaling $3.2 million to six organizations responsible for driving positive change and leading empowering programs and initiatives that directly impact the lives of residents throughout metro Detroit.

Recipient organizations are GenesisHope ($150,000), Enterprise Community Partners ($1.6 million), Eastern Market Partnership ($450,000), Community Development Advocates of Detroit ($550,000), Chandler Park Conservancy ($300,000), and the Michigan Center for Justice ($150,000).

The funding enables new and ongoing projects that have adapted to address the evolving needs of Detroit’s communities while enhancing the impact of the foundation’s traditional funding strategies.

The grants commit resources to programs that advance equitable workforce development, explore unique solutions to preserve affordable housing and support neighborhood parks and urban green spaces. They also facilitate community development projects that align with the foundation’s objective to support Detroit neighborhoods that provide high-level opportunities and quality of life for residents.

The new grants include initiatives that ensure Detroiters retain access to healthy fresh food, along with incubating and accelerating the growth of local food businesses and addressing youth justice through community-based innovative strategies that are racially unbiased.

Nintendo Summer of Play Tour to Stop at Great Lakes Crossing in Auburn Hills

To celebrate family summer gaming, Redmond, Wash.-based Nintendo is hosting the Nintendo Summer of Play tour to give guests of all ages the chance to discover their favorite Nintendo characters and learn more about the worlds they come from.

Locally, the tour will stop at Great Lakes Crossing Outlets (4000 Baldwin Road) in Auburn Hills, June 22-25.

While visiting the Nintendo Summer of Play tour, guests will receive a free Nintendo Summer of Play passport, which can be stamped after participating in various activities at the event. Once completed, they’ll have an opportunity to receive free Nintendo goodies (while supplies last). Attendees also can commemorate their Nintendo summer experience by stopping by the Play Nintendo Mushroom Kingdom Yourself Photobooth for a digital keepsake.

For checking in with My Nintendo at the event, Nintendo Account holders will receive a free gift (while supplies last) and 100 My Nintendo Platinum Points to redeem for fun rewards on my.nintendo.com.

Families Against Narcotics Staging Annual Run-Walk June 17

Families Against Narcotics (FAN), a Clinton Township-based nonprofit, will host its 15th annual Run Drugs Out of Town 5K Run/Walk fundraiser at 9 a.m. June 17, at, at Fraser High School  (34270 Garfield Road).

The event is expected to draw approximately 2,000 people to help increase awareness of addiction and raise money to fund the many programs FAN provides to individuals and families who have been affected by the disease.

“Run Drugs Out of Town takes us back to the roots of our organization,” says Linda Davis, executive director of FAN. “This event is about the community coming together for a common cause and striving to be part of the solution to the substance use disorder problem.”

Run Drugs Out of Town participants can walk or run the 5K either individually or as a team, and FAN gives recognition to the Top Fundraising Team and Top Fundraising Individual, as well as to the Largest Team. All runners receive medals, with special medals going to the top finishers in several age categories.

For more information, visit here.

Tickets on Sale Now for 2023 Xenith Prep Kickoff Classic at Wayne State University

The Detroit Sports Commission has announced that online tickets are available for the 18th Xenith Prep Kickoff Classic to be played Aug. 24-26 at Tom Adams Field on the campus of Wayne State University in Detroit.

Tickets can be purchased here and are $12.  One ticket provides admission for both games on the day of the ticket purchased. A portion of ticket proceeds benefits the participating schools. Fans will be required to bring their electronic device to activate the ticket at the gate.

The 2023 Xenith Prep Kickoff Classic will open at 4 p.m. on Aug. 24, with the event opener between Walled Lake Western and Waterford Mott followed by Chippewa Valley vs. West Bloomfield at 7 p.m.

On Aug. 25, Allen Park will take on Taylor at 4 p.m., and Belleville and River Rouge will face each other in the nightcap at 7 p.m. On the final day, Aug. 26, Detroit Cass Tech will open against Southfield A&T at 1 p.m., with Detroit King and St. Xavier (Cincinnati) in the event finale at 4 p.m.