Ann Arbor-based Applied Dynamics International (ADI) recently announced that it will invest almost $4.4 million and create 100 or more jobs in Ann Arbor as part of a planned expansion.
The business, known for its flight simulator platform used by Boeing and the U.S. Air Force, received a $650,000 performance-based grant from the Michigan Business Development Program (MBDP) based on plans to add jobs in Michigan. MBDP is an incentive program available from the Michigan Strategic Fund in cooperation with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.
ADI considered expanding its presence in the UK or Seattle but chose to expand in Ann Arbor, according to CEO Scott James.
"There were a lot of reasons why, in the end, we decided to go this route," James says. "More than anything, it was the access to talent. Also, the support the state of Michigan offers is what made it happen."
ADI was founded in 1957 and has undergone ownership changes as well as changes in focus. James says the company was close to bankruptcy when he took over as CEO in 2008. As part of his plan to make ADI profitable, he decided the company needed to focus on the most promising pieces of technology.
Out of that decision grew ADI's real-time distributed computation platform, which allows a computational load to be distributed over a network of inexpensive computers. The technology allows complex feedback data to be provided in real time, lending itself not only to simulation software like ADI's flight simulator but also to analytics and data handling. James says the underlying technology could also be applied to modernizing next-generation utility grids.
ADI has been growing both in revenue and in employee numbers over the last few years. ADI's revenues were about $5 million in 2014 and about $9 million in 2017, with $11 million projected for 2018. The company's headcount has grown from 36 in 2014 to its current team of 67.
The company plans to add at least 100 jobs, most of them software development engineers, and to build out its current building off Stone School Road. Some of the existing space is currently being remodeled, and a new wing of the building will be added soon. James says he expects to break ground on the addition within the next 18 months.
This piece is part of a series highlighting local business growth in the Ann Arbor area. It is supported by Ann Arbor SPARK.
Sarah Rigg is a freelance writer and editor in Ypsilanti Township. You may reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo by Sarah Rigg.