The Latest

December 10, 2016

 

""I work with a lot of companies in Michigan, and this is one of the few that can be a billion-dollar company," Arcadio Ramirez, technology business consultant for the Michigan Small Business Development Center, speaking about a small company in the Upper Peninsula called Neuvokas Corp.

It's the last place in Michigan you'd expect to find a billion-dollar company, this blue building surrounded by acres of fields and woods outside the small village of Ahmeek in the Keweenaw Peninsula.

Ahmeek and its brethren towns, Mohawk, Allouez and New Allouez, look more like ghost towns, many of their storefronts and houses, which were built along what is now U.S. 41 during the copper boom of the 1800s, sitting empty. (The highway begins at the northern tip of the Keweenaw, in Copper Harbor, and ends in a place as far removed from the U.P. in spirit and distance as you can get, Key West, Fla.)

The peninsula is filled with abandoned houses, abandoned mines and heaps of red conglomerate rock, waste byproduct piled up over decades by miners, which tourists still climb on, looking for nuggets of copper that have gone unfound for more than a century.

Even with the ghost towns and waste heaps, the Keweenaw is beautiful, heavily forested, big inland lakes, Lake Superior waves crashing onto craggy, rocky shores.

It's not a place, though, to look for riches.

Nothing would get you thinking of millions, let alone billions, but that's where you'll find Neuvokas Corp., in the former machine shop of the fabled No. 6 shaft of the Ahmeek Mining Co..."

Read full article here.

March 15, 2017

Ahmeek, MI – March 15, 2017 - At the end of 2016, Honolulu Wood Treating made a statement. They wanted to be the exclusive distributor of GatorBar in Hawaii and seized the opportunity by committing to a truckload order, right before the turn of the New Year. Honolulu Wood Treating, along with Aloha Marketing, spent January and February of 2017 making sure the GatorBar roll out would be a success. Now, less than three months after their initial PO, they’re demanding to be high priority. But, with good reason and plenty of weight to back up their assertion. About 546,000 pounds, or a 13 truckload GatorBar order, to be exact.

“Half of the first truckload was sold within days after receipt into our yard.  One of our dealers on Kauai ordered a 25,000 foot ‘master bundle’ and sold 16,000 feet of it the next day,” said Gary Okimoto of Honolulu Wood Treating. “They ordered a second master bundle shortly after.”

Things were moving faster than HWT had anticipated which sparked a commitment to a second GatorBar truckload, plus 12 more, shortly after the first had landed. The additional 12 truckloads will service HWT through 2017 and into the New Year.

Paul Kane of Aloha Marketing is representing GatorBar on the islands and has been a leading force in the promotion and distribution efforts.  

“There’s definitely been a buzz around the islands about GatorBar,” said Paul Kane of Aloha Marketing. “Hawaii is a great niche market for it. Corrosion is a big issue on the islands and transportation costs are high. GatorBar is lightweight and will not corrode, addressing both of these areas.”

Neuvokas CEO, Erik Kiilunen, spent a week in the Aloha State assisting with the GatorBar Product Launch in late February.

“It’s all hands on deck when you get this kind of commitment. Our team is ready to help wherever we can to make sure this partnership is beneficial for all,” said Kiilunen. “Our product is solving a real problem in Hawaii. It’s great when we can help make a change for the better.”

About Neuvokas Corporation. Founded in 2012, Neuvokas Corporation is an Ahmeek, MI based company that manufactures and distributes FRP rebar made from basalt fiber (BFRP). Distributed under the GatorBar™ brand Neuvokas’ BFRP is stronger and seven times lighter than steel, is non-corrosive and sells for the same price as it’s domestically produced steel counterpart.

About Honolulu Wood Treating. Established in 1955 and based in Kapolei, Hawaii, Honolulu Wood Treating provides wood treatment and building product distribution services to more than 50 dealer customers throughout the State of Hawaii.

About Aloha Marketing. Paul Kane has been in sales and marketing for over 30 years and is representing many chemical and construction materials. Kane has developed several products specifically designed for use in the Hawaiian market for both mainland and Hawaii based manufacturers.

Download official press release here.

March 07, 2017

Neuvokas Corporation was pleased to contribute to the CIM (Concrete Industry Management) Silent Auction at the 2017 WOC show in Las Vegas this past January. Neuvokas donated 10,000 linear feet of GatorBar to the auction to help raise money for the CIM Program. Adam Anvarinia of Premier Homes & Builders was the winning bidder. Adam specializes in residential home building and plans to use his GatorBar in a driveway project this coming spring.

“It’s an interesting product. I’m looking forward to trying GatorBar in a pour once everything thaws in the spring,” said Anvarinia. “If it goes well, we will definitely start incorporating it into more projects.”

About the CIM - The CIM program was established in 1996 at Middle Tennessee State University and focuses on producing graduates specializing in the concrete industry with a foundation in business management. Since its establishment, CIM has expanded to the New Jersey Institute of Technology, California State University – Chico, and Texas State University. The program includes concrete-specific courses covering the fundamentals of concrete, concrete construction, properties and testing, and the like. These hands-on, problem-solving classes prepare graduates to excel as professionals in the concrete industry. The World of Concrete, and participating businesses like Neuvokas, recognizes the value of the program in the industry and shows support by donating the proceeds of the auction to CIM each year. To date, more than 6 million dollars have been distributed to participating universities to help develop this program.

About Neuvokas Corporation – Neuvokas Corporation is an Ahmeek, MI based company, founded in 2013, that manufactures and distributes basalt fiber reinforced polymer (BFRP) rebar. Distributed under the GatorBar brand, Neuvokas’ BFRP is stronger, lighter than steel, is non-corrosive and is price equivalent to its’ domestically produced steel counterpart.

Download official Press Release here.

February 24, 2017

Ahmeek, MI – February 24, 2017 – Neuvokas Corporation welcomes Barnsco as a stocking distributor   “As a distributor, Barnsco will provide stocking service to the Dallas Fort Worth Metroplex area and Austin,” said Neuvokas Chief Executive Officer, Erik Kiilunen. “With their extensive Texas reach and industry leading service, Barnsco will bring incredible value to our efforts.”

“Barnsco has always taken the lead with new and innovative products. With the price of steel rising and the cost of FRP falling, I think the next few years will prove to be the beginning of a transition in the way concrete is reinforced, and we aim to be in the lead,” said Barnsco President, Jeff Barnes.

About Neuvokas Corporation. Neuvokas Corporation is an Ahmeek, MI based company, founded in 2013, that manufactures and distributes basalt fiber reinforced polymer (BFRP) rebar. Distributed under the GatorBar brand Neuvokas’ BFRP is stronger, seven times lighter than steel, is non-corrosive and is price equivalent to its’ domestically produced steel counterpart.

About Barnsco. Beginning in 1984, Barnsco has been supplying concrete contractors with quality construction materials. Barnsco Texas also specializes in equipment sales and rental. They are dedicated to earning customer loyalty by providing superior service as well as providing quality lines of construction materials. Barnsco’s core value is to treat their customers above the industry standard by providing them with attentive, courteous service in a timely manner.  Barnsco has Dallas, Fort Worth and Austin showrooms and warehouses.

Download official Press Release here.

 

December 29, 2016

Ahmeek, MI – December 29, 2016 – Neuvokas Corporation welcomes Honolulu Wood Treating as its exclusive stocking distributor serving the state of Hawaii.  “As a wholesale distributor Honolulu Wood Treating will provide stocking service to the entire state at all levels in the distribution chain,” said Neuvokas Chief Executive Officer, Erik Kiilunen. “With their truckload commitment, Honolulu Wood Treating will make GatorBar available to everyone in Hawaii.  With the corrosion and transportation challenges Hawaii faces we are confident they will be successful.”

Four hundred and fifty thousand feet of GatorBar is set to arrive on the islands in mid-January, and Paul Kane, Aloha Marketing, is committed to ensuring GatorBar makes a big splash in Hawaii. “I am very excited about bringing GatorBar to Hawaii in 2017,” said Kane. “I believe the freight, labor and handling savings will win over HWT dealers and Hawaiian contractors.”

About Neuvokas Corporation. Founded in 2012,Neuvokas Corporation is an Ahmeek, MI based company that manufactures and distributes FRP rebar made from basalt fiber (BFRP). Distributed under the GatorBar™ brand Neuvokas’ BFRP is stronger and seven times lighter than steel, is non-corrosive and sells for the same price as it’s domestically produced steel counterpart.

About Honolulu Wood Treating. Established in 1955 and based in Kapolei, Hawaii, Honolulu Wood Treating provides wood treatment and building product distribution services to more than 50 dealer customers throughout the State of Hawaii.

About Aloha Marketing. Paul Kane has been in sales and marketing for over 30 years and is representing many chemical and construction materials. Kane has developed several products specifically designed for use in the Hawaiian market for both mainland and Hawaii based manufacturers.

Download official press release here.

 

November 10, 2016

Ahmeek, MI – November 10, 2016 – Neuvokas Corporation was recently awarded a contract through the Purchasing Cooperative of America (PCA). This contract is another layer of validation and, in addition, will make working with governmental agencies much easier by streamlining the solicitation process. Becoming a member is free and easy for government entities. 

“I’m excited to begin leveraging this opportunity in the Houston area and Texas Region as a way to bring governmental agencies on board,” said Larry Goldberg, Regional Sales Director. “It gives us another layer of credibility and makes the transaction a little smoother.” 

About PCA: PCA is a Texas based, nationwide purchasing cooperative. PCA membership is free and eliminates the need for PCA vendors to respond individually to solicitations from different governmental agencies. PCA members can make purchases through PCA contracts easily, resting assured that the transaction is in accordance with federal and state law.

About Neuvokas Corporation: Founded in 2012, Neuvokas Corporation is an Ahmeek, MI based company that manufactures and distributes FRP rebar made from basalt fiber (BFRP). Distributed under the GatorBar™ brand Neuvokas’ BFRP is stronger and seven times lighter than steel reinforcing bar, is non-corrosive and sells for the same price as its domestically produced steel rebar counterpart.

To download Press Release, click here.

 

August 29, 2016

Ahmeek, MI – August 29, 2016 – Neuvokas Corporation welcomes a new team member Lawrence (Larry) Goldberg, PE!  Larry will begin leading the technical sales efforts in Texas as the Southwest Regional Sales Director.  Mr. Goldberg got his start in Civil Engineering with Dannenbaum Engineering of Houston in 1983, before settling in for a 17 year run with Landtech Consultants of Houston as the Director of Engineering.  He then spent six years helping develop and market an advanced soil compaction technology for Earthwork Solutions LLC.  For the past 3 years, Mr. Goldberg has worked as the Executive Vice President at Landev Engineers, a Binkley and Barfield Company.  Mr. Goldberg is currently the President Elect of the Texas Section of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) for 2016 - 2017.  His understanding of the Texas soils and construction methods as well as his reputation in Houston will be extremely valuable as Neuvokas continues to expand from Houston to the Texas market and beyond. 

Larry Goldberg, PE

Larry Goldberg, PE

“Larry brings a lot to the table. From a technical sales standpoint, he has all the right tools and connections to be successful,” said Erik Kiilunen, CEO of Neuvokas Corporation. “I’m looking forward to the results of his efforts.” 

“When I first saw the Neuvokas presentation I was very intrigued,” said Mr. Goldberg of his recent move to Neuvokas. “GatorBar is a disruptive product that I believe is going to change the industry and I’m excited to be a part of it. After visiting the Neuvokas facility and seeing what their team has created, I’m eager to get started and provide the infrastructure industry with this new advance in technology.”  

About Neuvokas Corporation: Since 2013, Neuvokas Corporation has been manufacturing and distributing FRP rebar made from basalt fiber (BFRP) out of Ahmeek, Michigan. Distributed under the GatorBar™ brand.   Neuvokas’ BFRP is stronger and seven times lighter than steel, is non-corrosive and is priced competitive to its domestically produced steel counterpart.

To download Press Release, click here.

August 09, 2016

"AHMEEK, Mich. (WLUC) Sometimes, the barriers to business can be easily solved. An improved road in Ahmeek is helping local businesses grow.

A simple road can mean a world of difference for a growing company. The Neuvokas corporation makes a synthetic building material. They know the importance of a road.

"When you can't get a heavy truck into your facility because of your load restrictions a couple of times a year, it just makes it difficult to actually perform business on a regular basis," said Erik Kiilunen, CEO of Neuvokas..." Read full article and watch video here.

August 02, 2016

August, 2 2016- Ahmeek, MI- The Houghton Skatepark Project has received a large donation from the Neuvokas Corporation out of Ahmeek, MI. Neuvokas has agreed to a monetary donation of $1,000 as well as a discount on rebar at an estimated value of $5,500. The rebar will play a critical role during the construction phase of the project. Read the full article here.

July 12, 2016

"Neuvokas

Basalt. You see it everywhere in the Copper Country. It's the volcanic rock from which the area's namesake ore was extracted, leaving piles of fragments still rich with copper and silver.

So, thought Erik Kiilunen and Ken Keranen—businessmen, engineers, and fiercely loyal residents of the Keweenaw—why not use local basalt to make the rebar that reinforces concrete in roads, bridge decks, and buildings? Basalt fiber-based rebar would be stronger, lighter, and more resistant to alkalinity, which can cause concrete to expand and crack..." Read full article here.

June 29, 2016

Ahmeek, MI - June 29, 2016 - Thanks to a TEDF Category A grant awarded by MDOT in August of 2015, the road connecting Neuvokas Corporation to US Highway 41 is repaved to enable year round use. TEDF (Transportation Economic Development Fund) helps fund road projects around Michigan that stimulate economic growth. The Keweenay County Road Commission will also be making shoulder and drainage improvements to the road. The development will allow Neuvokas to ship product via truck year round out of Keweenaw County.

A new road for Neuvokas.

A big THANK YOU goes out to the Michigan Department of Transportation and the State of Michigan for all of the help on the development!

"We really appreciate all of the support we've gotten from MDOT and the State on this project," said Neuvokas CEO Erik Kiilunen. "This road will make shipping GatorBar out of the far reaches of the Keweenaw Peninsula possible year round, as we expand in the coming years."

Most of Neuvokas' employees are Keweenaw Peninsula natives, and take pride in this beautiful place we call home.

"It's been great to be able to stay close to home, but still have a challenging career that pushes me every day," said Ken Keranen, COO and co-founder of Neuvokas. "We're looking forward to giving other local talent the same opportunity as we continue to grow and operate out of Ahmeek."

These road improvements are following major renovations to the Neuvokas building itself. The building was built around 1900 and for years the shop housed Rensen Products before eventually being abandoned. The building got a much needed face lift during the summer of 2014 when Neuvokas Corporation took over to expand its operations.

Neuvokas Corporation building

About Neuvokas Corporation: Founded in 2012, Neuvokas Corporation is an Ahmeek, MI based company that manufactures and distributes FRP rebar made from basalt fiber (BFRP). Distributed under the GatorBar brand, Neuvokas BFRP is stronger and seven times lighter than steel, is non-corrosive and is priced competitively to its domestically produced steel counterpart.

To download PDF version of this Press Release, click here!

May 10, 2016

Concrete Contractor Cover April/May 2016

GatorBar is featured on the cover of Concrete Contractor April/May 2016 issue!

Read the online version of the article here: READ ARTICLE. 

Flip through the online version of the full Concrete Contractor April/May 2016 issue: READ APRIL/MAY ISSUE.

March 14, 2016

Ahmeek, MI - March 14, 2016 - Neuvokas Corporation will be honored as one of the "Michigan 50 Companies to Watch" at an awards ceremony during the twelfth annual Michigan Celebrates Small Business gala event, May 5, 2016 in Lansing, Michigan. Every year the State's entrepreneurial community honors Michigan's most exeptional small businesses at this event.

Neuvokas Corporation is an Upper Peninsula based manufacturing company specializing in basalt fiber reinforced polymer rebar. Neuvokas' GatorBar product has equivalent performance characteristics and is cost competitive with steel rebar. Further, it is corrosion resistant and 1/7th the weight. The product is currently being used in infrastructure projects around the country.

"It is an honor to be recognized alongside some of Michigan's most innovative companies," said Erik Kiilunen, CEO of Neuvokas Corporation. "We are proud of our progress as a company and are working hard to grow Neuvokas even more in the coming years."

Companies making it to the "Michigan 50 Companies to Watch" list are a remarkable group of second-stage companies. Defined as having six to 99 full-time-equivalent employees and generating $750,000 to $50 million in annual revenue or working capital from investors or grants, these companies form the backbone of Michigan's economy. Companies like Neuvokas are known for their exceptional entrepreneurial leadership, creation of innovation or use of innovation in creative ways, and their sustainable competitive advantage.

Winners were selected by Michigan-based judges from the banking, economic development, entrepreneurship development, and venture capital communities.

Michigan 50 Companies to Watch is presented by Michigan Celebrates Small Business.

Information about Michigan Celebrates Small Business can be found at www.MichiganCelebrates.biz.

To download PDF version of this press release, click here.

February 13, 2016

"CALUMET - Mark Wilcox talked about a snowblower's spark plug, the least expensive part of an engine.

"It's a tiny thing," he said, "But that tiny thing makes the whole (machine work)."

Wilcox gave the opening remarks at the Keweenaw Chamber of Commerce's annual Keweenaw Community Spark Plug Awards Dinner for 2015."

Read full article.

February 09, 2016

Ahmeek, MI – February 9, 2016 - On February first, Matt Kero, Neuvokas’ VP of Engineering traveled to Washington DC as one of only 10 companies selected Nationally by the ASBDC to participate in a reception on Capitol Hill. Senators, members of the House of Representatives, staffers, and SBDC employees from around the nation were invited to connect and share success stories.

“This was a great opportunity for us” said Mr. Kero. “Its nice to be able to directly share our rebar solution with some of the folks making the infrastructure decisions in this country.” Arcadio Ramirez, Neuvokas’ MISBDC consultant said he was encouraged by the interest show by Michigan’s Senator Debbie Stabenow. “I think Senator Stabenow realized the transformative nature of the technology - how it can positively impact our country’s infrastructure, repatriate the rebar industry from China and bring many jobs to Michigan’s Upper Peninsula."

Founded in 2012, Neuvokas Corporation is an Ahmeek, MI based company that manufactures and distributes FRP rebar made from basalt fiber (BFRP). Distributed under the GatorBar™ brand Neuvokas’ BFRP is seven times lighter than steel, is non-corrosive and sells for the same price as its steel counterpart.

January 29, 2016

"Located in the far reaches of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula (UP), Neuvokas Corporation was founded in 2013 by Erik Kiilunen and Ken Keranen. Neuvokas runs out of the former Rensen Manufacturing facility in Keweenaw County, which the company renovated with state of the art equipment and machinery. The team at Neuvokas has now grown to five, with plans to add another 30+ employees over the next two to three years as the company scales production..." 

Read More.

January 28, 2016

" "Inventiveness" or "resourcefulness" constitutes a key building block for entreprenuerial ventures, and the Finnish translation, "Neuvokas," is the moniker of an advanced-materials company from the far reaches of Michigan's Upper Peninsula..." Read more.

January 06, 2016

Ahmeek, MI – January 6, 2016 – Neuvokas Corporation was selected by the Michigan Small Business Development Corporation (MI-SBDC) to represent the state at Americas Small Business Development Corporation (ASBDC) annual Capitol Hill Reception on February 1, 2016 in Washington DC. Neuvokas produces fiber based rebar from its manufacturing facility in Michigan’s upper peninsula. The Company’s rebar, manufactured at scale, can compete head-to-head with steel rebar being imported from China. “Being selected to attend this conference out of all of companies across this country is something we’re proud of,” said company Chief Executive Officer Erik Kiilunen, “it’s a testament to the value we’ve been able to create working with Michigan’s SBDC.”

About Neuvokas Corporation. Founded in 2012, Neuvokas Corporation is an Ahmeek, MI based company that manufactures and distributes FRP rebar made from basalt fiber (BFRP). Distributed under the GatorBar™ brand Neuvokas’ BFRP is stronger and seven times lighter than steel, is non-corrosive and sells for the same price as its domestically produced steel counterpart.

About the ASBDC. America’s SBDC represents America’s nationwide network of Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs) – the most comprehensive small business assistance network in the United States and its territories.

About the MI-SBDC. The Michigan Small Business Development Center provides counseling, business education, information based planning and technology commercialization services to Michigan’s new business ventures, existing small businesses, growing businesses and innovators. The Michigan SBDC State Headquarters is located at the Grand Valley State University, Seidman College of Business in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Download official press release here.

 

 

November 23, 2015

Daily Mining Gazette - November 23, 2015

"AHMEEK LOCATION - Neuvokas is a Finnish word meaning resourceful, creative or innovative, and it's also the name of a manufacturing company in Ahmeek Location, which recently received an award for innovation in energy conservation..."

Read Article.

November 19, 2015

ABC 10 News- November 19, 2015

"AHMEEK - A manufacturing company in Ahmeek has a long road ahead of them. And that's good news because they produce a fiber reinforced polymer rebar used in the construction of roads..."

Article/ Video

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