Thor Industries CEO on the manufacturing boom in the U.S.

Thor Industries CEO on the manufacturing boom in the U.S.

Dec 4, 2017

  Featured on Fox Business Thor Industries CEO Bob Martin on the manufacturing industry and the company’s latest quarterly earnings report.         Watch the latest video at...

Making Manufacturing Great Again Would Add $530 Billion…

Making Manufacturing Great Again Would Add $530 Billion…

Nov 28, 2017

“Making Manufacturing Great Again Would Add $530 Billion to GDP” By Andrew Soergel, Economy Reporter, U.S. News  A new report suggests investments in today’s manufacturing operations could carry hundreds of billions of dollars in economic payoffs. The U.S. manufacturing sector has weathered a bumpy road over the course of the past two decades – but successfully righting the country’s industrial ship would mean an economic windfall of $530 billion, according to a new report from The McKinsey Global Institute. McKinsey put out a lengthy report last week profiling the past several years of U.S. manufacturing malaise – noting that only a few sectors, like “pharmaceuticals, electronics and aerospace” have emerged relatively unscathed. “Some industries staged a modest demand-driven recovery between 2010 and 2015. But growth in overall U.S. manufacturing output has been slowing for two decades, with little net increase during the most recent decade,” the report said. “Today there are roughly 25 percent fewer U.S. manufacturing firms and plants than there were in 1997, reflecting not only closures but also fewer manufacturing startups. Along the way, the sector has shed roughly one-third of its jobs.” The sector’s decline has been bad news for America’s international standing, as “low-cost contract manufacturers in locations such as Mexico, China, Vietnam and Bangladesh” gained market share. It’s also contributed to an erosion of the U.S. middle class, eaten away at economic growth and – along with a rise in automation – contributed to significant job losses. There were more than 5 million fewer manufacturing workers in the U.S. last month than there were 20 years prior in October 1997, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Smaller manufacturers, in particular, have suffered, while larger operations have in many cases managed to navigate the complicated international industrial waters. “Many Americans long for a return to the glory days of the 1960s and ’70s, when manufacturing jobs were the bedrock of the middle class and the United States led the world in industrial output,” the study said, in some ways reminiscent of President Donald Trump’s call to restore manufacturing’s prominent role in the economy. The report makes no reference to Trump or his call for a manufacturing renaissance. But...

Tech Advances Drive Manufacturing Investments Back to U.S.

Tech Advances Drive Manufacturing Investments Back to U.S.

Oct 30, 2017

By Andrew Soergel, Economy Reporter, U.S. News Advances in artificial intelligence and industrial production are reshaping the world’s manufacturing landscape. Manufacturing at long last is enjoying a revitalization in the U.S. as companies from around the world invest in the country’s operations – a key development in President Donald Trump’s quest to make America great again. But presidential policies may not be the primary driver of the manufacturing shift back to the U.S. – and an industrial return isn’t expected to create nearly the same number of jobs that factory floors maintained in decades past. It appears to be technological innovations, rather than policies or an availability of labor, driving the manufacturing renaissance. And with operational advances extending well beyond the reaches of Silicon Valley and into Rust Belt communities in the Northeast and Midwest, many believe the country is well-positioned to be a leader in advanced manufacturing for years to come. “The reason is, candidly, it’s less about the manufacturing people. It’s more about the technology,” Mike Marusic, COO of Sharp Electronics, said Wednesday during an event hosted by Bloomberg. Marusic said Sharp is one of several companies that has chosen to increase investment in the U.S. rather than seeking out “traditional manufacturing places” like China and Thailand in recent years. Other companies include medical device manufacturer Insulet – which broke ground last month on a new central Massachusetts facility that’s expected to bring hundreds of jobs to the area after spending several years operating a production outfit in China – and General Electric, which has tweaked investment plans in recent years to funnel more resources into U.S. facilities rather than in countries with historically lower labor costs like Mexico and China. Even Foxconn, a Taiwan-based electronics manufacturer that helps assemble popular products like iPhones, recently announced plans to build a Wisconsin facility and develop operations in the U.S., despite its proximity to what have historically been considered countries with cheap labor. The Reshoring Initiative advocacy group estimates 338,000 jobs migrated to the U.S. from overseas between 2010 and 2016. The country on net is estimated to have gained 25,000 manufacturing positions last year – meaning more jobs returned to the U.S. than were offshored in 2016 for the first net gain in years. At...

U.S. Reshoring: A Collaborative Challenge

U.S. Reshoring: A Collaborative Challenge

Oct 23, 2017

Feature in Design-2-Part Magazine Manufacturing Experts Answer 5 Questions on How to Turn the Tide FAIRPORT HARBOR, Ohio—North America’s $137 billion metalforming industry is driven by the production of myriad precision metal products using stamping, fabricating, spinning, slide forming, and roll forming technologies, as well as vital value-added processes. In recent decades, approximately 3-to-4 million U.S. manufacturing jobs were lost to offshoring. The tide seems to be turning modestly in recent years as companies return U.S. production, or sourcing, from offshore. In comparison to 2000-2003, when the United States lost about 220,000 manufacturing jobs per year (net) to offshoring, 2016 achieved a net gain of 27,000. Progressively bridging this gap presents huge collaborative opportunities and challenges for all manufacturers, associations, employees, communities, and the U.S. government itself. The following Q&A explores factors that are key to the collective goal of gaining momentum in successfully returning the manufacturing of parts and products to the United States from offshore. Authors of the Q&A are two men with a vested interest in the subject of reshoring: John Stoneback, president of JM Performance Products, Inc., of Fairport Harbor, Ohio; and Harry Moser, president of the Reshoring Initiative, based in Kildeer, Illinois. JM Performance Products, Inc. has been manufacturing CNC mill spindle optimization products since 2009. The company’s Patented High Torque Retention Knobs overcome a critical “loose-tool” design flaw inherent in CNC v-flange tooling that was responsible for costly, industry-wide issues with CNC milling and boring that negatively impacted production costs, cycle time, and tooling costs. An essential element of the patented design is a knob that is longer and reaches a little deeper into the holder’s threaded bore. As a result, all thread engagement occurs in a region of the tool holder where the diameter is large, and where there is correspondingly more material to resist deformation. The Reshoring Initiative, founded in early 2010, takes action by helping manufacturers realize that local production, in many cases, reduces their total cost of ownership of purchased parts and tooling. The Reshoring Initiative also trains suppliers in how to effectively meet the needs of their local customers, giving suppliers the tools to sell against lower priced offshore competitors. The Initiative is...

Wisconsin-Based Mitchell Metal Products Wins First…

Wisconsin-Based Mitchell Metal Products Wins First…

Oct 12, 2017

“Wisconsin-Based Mitchell Metal Products Wins First National Reshoring Award” By Beth Lawrence, Content & Media Manager, DGS Marketing Engineers CLEVELAND, October 12, 2017 – Mitchell Metal Products of Merrill, WI has received the first National Reshoring Award in recognition of the company’s success bringing manufacturing back home to the United States. The award, given by The Reshoring Initiative and the Precision Metalforming Association (PMA), honors a company that has effectively reshored products, parts or tooling made primarily by metal forming, fabricating or machining. Mitchell Metal Products was selected after using reshoring to complete more end products with less lead time. In 2016, the company manufactured a cultivator handle subassembly product, increasing the production volume from 4,500 made overseas to 30,000 made in Wisconsin. “We are thrilled and honored to receive the first National Reshoring Award,” said Tim Zimmerman, president of Mitchell Metal Products. “By utilizing the total cost of ownership approach pioneered by The Reshoring Initiative, we have won a number of value-added contracts and brought work back home. We are proud to be delivering high-quality products to our customers and creating good jobs here in Wisconsin. Right now, eight percent of our workforce is employed because of products we have helped to reshore.” The award was presented in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on September 28, 2017, at Sourcing Solutions™, a popular procurement program hosted by PMA. This premier sourcing event brought together buyers and engineers from top manufacturing companies with pre-screened suppliers, enabling companies to find the most competitive resources for their projects. The 2018 National Reshoring Award will be presented next fall during Sourcing Solutions. Additional details about the event will be available in early 2018. “We are proud to be a sponsor of the National Reshoring Award and to celebrate companies who are contributing to the strength of the American manufacturing sector,” said Allison Grealis, vice president of membership and association services at PMA. “Through Sourcing Solutions and other efforts, PMA is committed to supporting manufacturers in their quest to find local, competitive suppliers and keep work here at home.” “I was delighted that the winning product was a relatively conventional item, instead of being an advanced aerospace or electronics component,” said Harry...