Associated Industries of Massachusetts today announced the winners of its 23rd annual AIM Global Trade Awards, which recognize Massachusetts companies and public agencies of all sizes that have demonstrated excellence in international business. The 2018 honorees include Bennett & Co., Universal Plastics, and John Hancock.
“From innovation in product development to supporting the profile of our commonwealth across the world, Massachusetts companies are deeply entrenched in the global marketplace,” said Richard Lord, President and CEO of AIM. “We are delighted to honor the achievements of these winners, who exhibit best practices in advancing global business. During a time when trade and international commerce are key topics of conversation, we want to foster an appreciation for the role of global business in our local economy.”
The three Global Trade Award winners will be honored during the AIM Global Trade Symposium & Awards Breakfast on Thursday, November 8 from 8-11 am at Waltham Woods Conference Center. The event will feature keynote speaker Robert Z. Lawrence, Professor of International Trade & Investment at the Kennedy School of Government. A panel discussion on “Global Business: Tariffs, Treaties and Trends” will follow. The AIM Global Trade Symposium & Awards is sponsored by Massport, Massachusetts Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MassMEP) and The Provident Bank.
Ambassador’s Award: Bennett & Co., Newburyport
Founded in 1984 by CEO Jacalyn Bennett, Bennett & Co. is one of the leading designers and manufacturers for women’s intimate apparel, sleepwear and lingerie worldwide. Offices located in Newburyport are home to all of Bennett & Co.’s design, research and development efforts. Ms. Bennett owns her manufacturing facility in Guangzhou, China, from which completed products are sent around the world on behalf of Bennett’s brand-name retail clients. Bennett & Co.’s 60,000 products and styles are produced with a minimal environmental footprint. Jacalyn Bennett is a long-time philanthropist in her local community and beyond.
Diplomat’s Award: Universal Plastics, Holyoke, MA
Owned and operated by husband and wife team Jay and Pia Kumar, Universal Plastics has grown rapidly in the six years since the couple bought the company. Founded in 1965, Universal Plastics manufactures custom thermoformed plastic parts. These include covers and housings for large machinery such as aircraft engines, MRI machines and dental equipment; plastic components for airplane seats; tamper-resistant signs for bus stops, and kayaks. With 300 employees in Massachusetts, five manufacturing facilities in the U.S., and headquarters in Holyoke, Universal Plastics has created over 100 new jobs in the last 6 years, fueled by export growth.
President’s Award: John Hancock, Boston, MA
John Hancock is both a major Massachusetts employer and an ambassador for the Commonwealth globally. Owned by Canadian multinational insurance company Manulife, John Hancock offers a broad range of financial products to individuals and corporations. Equally important, as the lead sponsor of the Boston Marathon, John Hancock plays a major role in bringing global elite athletes and the world’s attention to Massachusetts each April. Nearly ¼ of the Marathon runners—approximately 7000—hail from close to 100 countries outside the U.S.