(Petoskey, Michigan) – Travelers on US 31 have probably noticed a new name in town. Aster Brands recently purchased and renovated the former Northwest Design Group building at 2940 Parkview Drive in Petoskey, just across from East Park. The company is hosting a ribbon cutting ceremony and open house on Aug. 15 from 4:30 - 6:30pm. The community is invited for a Chamber of Commerce ribbon cutting ceremony, food, drinks, and a canned food and supply drive to support the Nehemiah Project.
Even though Aster Brands is a new name, the company’s roots run deep in Northern Michigan. “My great grandma was actually the first entrepreneur in our family in Petoskey, way back in the early 1900s. She started a small flower farm just up the hill from our new office. The flowers she grew were called asters, and they helped launch our family on the entrepreneurial path we’re on today,” said Aster Brands president Jake Manthei.
Aster Brands is a licensing company that partners with concrete manufacturers around the globe to produce its brands of concrete products, under the names Redi-Rock, Rosetta Hardscapes, and Pole Base. The vision of Aster Brands is to change the world in concrete ways; which means the obvious changes to infrastructure and landscapes, but it also goes deeper to include providing jobs in the communities we serve and an opportunity to impact the lives around us. You’ll find Aster Brands concrete products providing lighting at the Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, supporting the Olympic bobsled track in Seoul, South Korea, and creating space for the Little Traverse Wheelway right here in Petoskey.
“In 2015, we stepped back and said ‘what do we want out of the next 10 years?’ We had achieved quite a bit already, but I had recently taken over as CEO after my dad retired,” explained Manthei. “This is the time in my career to take some risks. I’m young, I’m motivated, and I knew that if we built the right team, we’d be able to achieve some incredible things. Together, we’re changing the world in concrete ways and I couldn’t be happier with the great work the team is doing to impact our business and the larger community.”
In early 2016, the leadership team consolidated management of Redi-Rock, Rosetta Hardscapes, and Pole Base under one team and in early 2018, the formal merger and creation of Aster Brands was official. With growth of 30% a target for 2018, Aster Brands had to make some major changes in management and processes, which included a major investment in steel manufacturing equipment, technology, and people in its Charlevoix location - as well as an expansion of office space at the new Parkview Drive headquarters.
“One of the best parts of being in business in Northern Michigan is being able to provide great jobs in our community. So often I hear of kids graduating from high school and thinking they can never have a career here because they want to go into engineering or marketing or finance. All of those things are happening here in Northern Michigan; you just have to dig a little. We look forward to hosting the community at our ribbon cutting ceremony. We’re always eager to find sharp people to join our team and we’re excited to be a more engaged member of the Petoskey community moving forward,” Manthei said.
One of the causes the Aster Brands team and the Manthei family have supported over the years is the Nehemiah Project, the local homeless shelter in Petoskey. As part of the Aster Brands ribbon cutting ceremony, the company is collecting donations for the Nehemiah project, including canned food, cleaning supplies, and more. Find a list of needs at nehemiahshelters.org/Needs
Learn more about Aster Brands at asterbrands.com.