The South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership applauds the awarding of the sixth round of the Manufacturing Readiness Grants to 13 businesses located in Elkhart, Marshall, and St. Joseph counties. The Manufacturing Readiness Grants are awarded in partnership between the Indiana Economic Development Corporation and Conexus Indiana, with the aim to support technology-enabled capital investment in Indiana. Across the State, grants have awarded $17.4 million in funding to 212 companies, of which $2.8 million across 36 companies has come to the South Bend – Elkhart region since the 2020 launch.

“Manufacturing is one of the backbone industries in the South Bend – Elkhart region and with the funds received through the sixth round of Manufacturing Readiness Grants, we are further catalyzing our region with equipment investments to advance Industry 4.0 best practices,” said Bethany Hartley, CEO of the South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership. “This round brings $1.2 million of investments to our region, meaning 30 percent of this round’s statewide $4 million in grants is dedicated to building on our strong foundation. We look forward to seeing the impact these funds have on the 13 companies – and our region – in the future.”

South Bend – Elkhart region recipients include:

  • Hoosier Tank and Manufacturing LLC (St. Joseph County; $40,000 grant award) – The made-to-order manufacturer of steel air reservoirs for the heavy-duty truck and trailer industries is investing in a Markforged 3D printer to produce carbon fiber reinforced components and a 3D laser scanning system to analyze, measure and quality check its finished goods.
  • ITAMCO Co. (Marshall County; $191,240 grant award) – The company manufactures gearing and precision machining for heavy-duty industries and is investing in automation and robotics to augment both the pre- and post-heat treatment steps in its manufacturing process. 
  • Laidig Systems Inc. (St. Joseph County; $130,000 grant award) – This bulk material storage and reclaim system manufacturer is investing in a new 40,000-square-foot manufacturing facility, including automated cranes and a state-of-the-art computer-controlled lathe.
  • Mack Tool & Engineering (St. Joseph County; $85,000 grant award) – The company is a precision machine shop that supplies machined parts and assemblies to the aerospace, medical and other industries. The grant is focused on software to enhance the capabilities of its CNC machines as well as a cobot tending system to augment its manufacturing process.
  • Marson International LLC (Elkhart County; $162,500 grant award) – This tube fabricator is investing in robotics and automation for its buffing, bending, and cutting processes. 
  • Michiana Global Mold LLC (St. Joseph County; $145,000 grant award) – The precision mold builder for plastics and rubber injection molding is investing in automated equipment to increase efficiencies and allow for more unmanned production.
  • Skinny Guy Campers LLC (Elkhart County; $37,875 grant award) – The manufacturing startup makes self-contained, truck bed campers and plans to invest in digitized truck beds measurements with advanced precision to allow custom fitting of campers to more truck models.
  • Steel Warehouse Company LLC (St. Joseph County; $50,000 grant award) – This family-owned premier steel processor and service center with distribution, shipping and processing capabilities for slit coil, sheet, plate, and cold-rolled steel products is investing in a heavy payload robotic system to automate production of its dock ramp leveling line products.
  • Stoutco Inc. (Elkhart County; $75,000 grant award) – This steel fabricator crafts hot and cold rolled steel as well as stainless, aluminized and aluminum and provides an array of blanking capabilities. The company is investing in an automated fiber laser cutter to augment its current capabilities and secure new business.
  • Talon LLC (Elkhart County; $100,000 grant award) – The company manufactures fabricated metal products and is investing in fiber laser cutters to enhance workflow flexibility, eliminate the need for oxygen and cutting gases, and reduce energy consumption.
  • Vista Plastics LLC (Elkhart County; $60,000 grant award) – The plastics extrusion manufacturer is investing in smart equipment to automate various steps in its extrusion production line for cutting more precise lengths.
  • Walerko Tool and Engineering (Elkhart County; $55,000 grant award) – This manufacturer of precision piece parts, tools, fixtures, and special machines is investing in new technology and enhanced machinery to further automate its machining processes and to increase output.
  • Wilco Distributing (St. Joseph County; $50,000 grant award) – The company, which specializes in manufacturing interior and exterior commercial and residential doors and hardware for the hospitality, multifamily and design and build industries, is investing in automated equipment for its pre-hung door manufacturing line.

For more information on the Manufacturing Readiness Grants, click here

About South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership
The South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership is a collaboration of the economic development partners from 47 smart connected communities in northern Indiana and southwest Michigan. The South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership focuses on a long-term systemic approach to advance the region’s economy by aligning the efforts of various stakeholders around five key areas: educating a world-class workforce, recruiting and retaining great talent, attracting and growing new economy companies in complement to our remarkably strong manufacturing industries, promoting inclusion and sparking opportunities for minorities and helping entrepreneurs thrive. The South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership seeks to unify and collaborate so that together, the communities across the region to work together to achieve what cannot be done individually. For more information about the Regional Partnership, visit