15 Sep Wolverine World Wide To Expand Boot Factory
Wolverine World Wide Inc. will invest $2 million to increase production of military footwear at its factory in Big Rapids, MI.
The money will be spent adding 16,000 square feet to a 75,000-square-foot facility, which already manufactures up to 1 million pairs of boots annually for the U.S. military.
In March, Wolverine World Wide beat out two other bidders to win a fixed-price contract to supply boots to the U.S. Marine Corps. The one-year base contract is worth up to $7.2 million and can be renewed up to four times. Wolverine World Wide’s Bates brand has developed and manufactured combat boots for U.S. Special Forces and other branches of the U.S. military, as well as foreign militaries, for years.
The announcement came during a visit by U.S. Senator Gary Peters, who strongly supported legislation requiring the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps to begin equipping recruits exclusively with Made in America athletic footwear as required by the Berry Amendment. While the provision was included in two defense spending and appropriations bills passed by the House and the Senate this summer, the bills remain bottled up in conference committee.