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BuyMass to Conduct Supplier Matchmaking Event with Pratt & Whitney

Posted by Christopher Geehern on Jul 27, 2012 10:26:00 AM

Pratt & Whitney, the Connecticut-based global designer, manufacturer and servicer of aircraft engines, industrial gas turbines and space propulsion systems, will meet on August 6 with potential Massachusetts business partners at a supplier matchmaking event sponsored by the BuyMass initiative.

PrattPratt & Whitney, a division of United Technologies Corporation, will meet privately with more than a dozen pre-qualified companies at a BuyMass matchmaking event sponsored by Associated Industries of Massachusetts (AIM), the Economic Development Council (EDC) of Western Massachusetts, and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Pratt is looking for potential suppliers with expertise in:

  • Five-Axis Milling
  • Plasma
  • Splining
  • Heat Treat
  • EB Weld
  • Laser drill/weld house for large CAN liners and nozzles
  • EDM drilling with inspection capability

Participating companies will be evaluated based upon the demonstrated quality of their manufacturing process, the equipment they use and their experience providing products and services under the exacting standards of the aerospace industry.

“The matchmaking event gives Pratt & Whitney the opportunity to find innovative and world-class suppliers in Massachusetts while allowing companies here to speak directly about their technologies and products to one of the world’s foremost companies,” said Richard C. Lord, President of Associated Industries of Massachusetts and Chief Executive of the BuyMass initiative.

The event will take place at Pratt & Whitney’s offices in East Hartford, Connecticut.

There is still time for Massachusetts companies to apply to participate in the matchmaking event with Pratt and Whitney. Companies that apply will be notified by Thursday, August 2, whether they have been approved for a meeting.

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BuyMass is a public/private collaboration to encourage companies to develop regional supply networks and commercial relationships with other employers in the commonwealth. The initiative maintains a statewide supplier directory called BuyMass.org and arranges focused business-to-business meetings throughout Massachusetts between global companies and best-in-class suppliers.

There is no guarantee that a meeting at BuyMass matchmaking will lead to a contract or business relationship with Pratt & Whitney – it merely provides an opportunity for a company to introduce itself.

Topics: Business Center, Massachusetts Manufacturing, BuyMass

Mestek, Orion Find New Business Close to Home in Massachusetts

Posted by Christopher Geehern on Jan 31, 2012 2:19:00 PM

Richard Kessler of Mestek Inc. in Westfield and Peter Smith of Orion Industries in Ayer both admit to being a bit surprised that the two companies would end up doing business as a result of a BuyMass Matchmaking event at Mestek in November.

BuyMassMestek, after all, is a $400 million heating, ventilating and air conditioning systems maker that until recently bought thermal insulation materials from a national supplier located in the southern United States.

Orion is a 35-person company that typically sells fabricated parts to electronics and medical-device companies. Orion sold thermal insulation years ago to a Massachusetts HVAC manufacturer, but that company eventually moved production overseas.

Two weeks after the BuyMass event, however, Mestek placed an initial order for thermal insulation materials with Orion. The Ayer company is now bidding on a second project to supply Mestek with gasket pieces.

“Orion showed an interest in our business and demonstrated the strong technical ability that we need. Their lead time was also better than the incumbent and speed wins,” said Mr. Kessler, the Vice President of Supply Management at Mestek and the executive in charge of the BuyMass event.

He reported that two or three other companies that attended the matchmaking session may also become Mestek partners.

Mr. Smith, the Orion Industries sales manager, came to the November 17 BuyMass event with a case of the flu and some serious doubts about whether his company could provide products that Mestek needed. He walked curiously around a display of Mestek boilers before his meeting, looking inside each one to determine whether it might use Orion products.

“We were very pleasantly surprised to get the business,” Mr. Smith said.

“Mestek is not a typical customer for us – we’re usually doing fabricated parts for specialized electronic equipment. But to gain this business over a company in the south with lower overhead is exciting.”

Orion, founded in 1973, designs and manufactures custom parts, specializing in electrical insulation, gaskets and seals, thermal transfer materials, and EMI/RFI shield laminates.

Mestek met with 19 potential suppliers overall at the November event,  the latest in a series of supplier-matchmaking sessions organized by AIM’s BuyMass initiative as part of an effort to encourage the development of commercial relationships among Massachusetts companies. BuyMass created a matchmaking event for Raytheon Company in the spring of 2011 at which the defense engineering company met with 15 potential suppliers.

Additional BuyMass Matchmaking events will be scheduled this year. The meetings have produced a number of successful supply relationships among Massachusetts companies, including one between Raytheon and office products manufacturer Roxbury Technology Corporation of Hyde Park.

Mr. Kessler said the BuyMass event offered Mestek an efficient way to find interesting and price-competitive companies that will help it win worldwide market share. He noted that Orion not only offered a lower unit price than its competitors, but also a lower total acquired cost, a broader category that includes selling, transportation, minimum order quantities, lead time, stocking programs and technical resources.

“Orion was the clear choice,” he said.

The November BuyMass event was co-sponsored by the Massachusetts Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development and the Economic Development Council of Western Massachusetts.

 

Topics: Economic Development, BuyMass

Manufacturing: Unlikely Leader of the Recovery in Massachusetts

Posted by Celia Grant on Jun 1, 2011 11:39:00 AM

Manufacturing is back.

ManufacturingThe business of making things has emerged as one of the unlikely superstars of the post-crash economic recovery. The renaissance of high-value manufacturing in the Bay State is being driven by factors ranging from technology, exports and efficiency to innovative design and a startling reversal of the off-shoring trend that dominated the 1980s and 1990s.

The result is that Massachusetts manufacturers have added a net total of 1,800 jobs during the past 13 months. Manufacturing productivity grew 6.3 percent nationally during the first quarter and 4.7 percent over 12 months.

The media is full of stories about manufacturers replacing overseas production of complex products and assemblies with regional supply chains in the United States. The Boston Business Journal recently ran a series entitled “A Manufacturing Revival: For Some High-Tech Companies, Making Products in Massachusetts is Making More Sense.” The Economist ran a similar article and even Wired magazine got into the act with a piece detailing the decision of some American companies to abandon production in China because of persistent quality problems.

 “…Stamping out products in Guangdong Province is no longer the bargain it once was, and US manufacturing is no longer as expensive. As the labor equation has balanced out, companies—particularly the small to medium-size businesses that make up the innovative guts of America’s technology industry—are taking a long, hard look at the downsides of extending their supply chains to the other side of the planet,” the Wired article said.

The trend toward “home grown” manufacture of high-value products is nothing new to us here at Associated Industries of Massachusetts. We created the BuyMass business-to-business initiative in large part because AIM-member companies told us that they wanted to create strong and reliable networks of suppliers in New England to maintain control over quality and the process of making sophisticated components. Raytheon Company invested an entire day at a May 5 BuyMass matchmaking event in Springfield meeting with Massachusetts-based providers of everything from radar technology to software.

Manufacturers are forging other alliances as well in an effort to distinguish their products. The Design Industry Group of Massachusetts used its spring conference, “Mass Made:  Reinventing Manufacturing in Massachusetts,” to highlight the way AIM-member companies such as Procter & Gamble|Gillette, NYPRO and the John Matouk Company have used design to rethink both products and manufacturing processes. 

Matouk has used design to reinvigorate a business that prior to 1998 had no signature product and no true identity. The company restructured from a maker of commodity textiles to the manufacturer of a high-end, niche product—luxury bed and bath linens. The company and its products have been called the “most stylish, and most flexible, and best in service” and Matouk competes successfully with the most expensive and exclusive linen companies around the world.

Manufacturing remains a key to the Massachusetts economy, according to Northeastern University economics professor Barry Bluestone:

  • Manufacturing is the fourth largest employer in Massachusetts;
  • Manufacturing generates the second highest payroll, and an average employee salary of $65,000 per year.
  • Twenty four percent of the manufacturing work force is foreign-born;
  • The average age of manufacturing workers is 50, so the largest challenge is replacing workers who can earn as much as $100,000 per year;
  • The average company has fewer than 25 employees and is family owned.

No one expects Massachusetts to return to its industrial heyday making commodity products along assembly lines in sprawling manufacturing facilities. But companies such as Rocheleau Tool and Die in Fitchburg, which last month won an AIM Global Trade award for generating 50 percent of its sales overseas, and Tegra Medical of Franklin, which recently won the inaugural Next Generation Manufacturing award, provide hope that Massachusetts manufacturers will continue good jobs at the crest of the innovation economy.


 

Topics: Associated Industries of Massachusetts, Massachusetts economy, Manufacturing, BuyMass

Governor, AIM Announce Expanded BuyMass Initiative

Posted by Christopher Geehern on May 16, 2011 8:32:00 AM

Associated Industries of Massachusetts (AIM) and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts on Friday announced a major expansion of their public/private collaboration to stimulate the economy by encouraging Massachusetts companies to do business with one another.

BuyMassGovernor Deval Patrick announced the expanded BuyMass initiative during a keynote address today to more than 600 business leaders at the AIM Annual Meeting in Waltham. The improvements include new search capabilities for the BuyMass.org statewide online directory and the introduction of BuyMass Matchmaking, a series of focused business-to-business meetings throughout Massachusetts between global companies and best-in-class suppliers.

BuyMass is supported by major private employers such as Raytheon Company, Procter & Gamble|Gillette, GE Aviation, the DePuy Companies of Johnson & Johnson, New Balance, Salem Five, NYPRO, Mestek and Solutia. The objective is for manufacturing and other companies to develop regional supply networks and commercial relationships that create jobs and economic opportunity for the citizens of the Commonwealth.

“The public and private sectors are working side-by-side to strengthen our economic recovery and help Massachusetts employers find exciting new business opportunities right here in their own backyard,” said Governor Patrick.

“Global companies identify innovative providers of new technologies and products, while young, entrepreneurial companies find important new customers. These partnerships deliver lasting economic benefits for individual businesses, regional economies and our entire Commonwealth."

AIM and the Patrick-Murray Administration’s Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development have been working on the BuyMass initiative for more than a year. The formal announcement came less than a week after the inaugural BuyMass Matchmaking event in Springfield brought defense and technology giant Raytheon together with 15 potential business partners offering everything from radar and sonar technology to computer software.

“We are very appreciative for the opportunity to meet with Raytheon and look forward to meeting with other Massachusetts companies to create business growth in the manufacturing sector. We can do business with global companies like Raytheon, but we just need someone to open the door and help us find the right people,” said Robert Klinger, President of Klinger Engineering in Whately.

Richard C. Lord, President of Associated Industries of Massachusetts and Chief Executive of the BuyMass initiative, said the idea of regional matchmaking events comes directly from the companies such as Raytheon that support and advise BuyMass.

“These companies want efficient opportunities to establish relationships that will create revenue, growth and jobs throughout the Massachusetts economy. The fact that Raytheon stepped forward to participate in the Springfield event underscores the company’s longtime dedication to improving the Massachusetts manufacturing economy,” Lord said.

The BuyMass.org online directory includes more than 6,000 Massachusetts companies ranging from global high technology enterprises to physician practices to bed-and-breakfasts. New upgrades to the site will allow potential customers to search for Bay State companies by product, industry, location or designations such as minority owned enterprise or ISO 9000 certified.

Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Gregory Bialecki, who participated in last week’s matchmaking event with Raytheon in Springfield, said the Commonwealth is using BuyMass to help companies looking to locate or expand in Massachusetts find potential suppliers. The idea, according to Secretary Bialecki, is for Massachusetts companies to find opportunities that make business sense for the parties involved and end up growing the economy.

“The Patrick-Murray Administration has worked with the many world-class manufacturers across the Commonwealth and is pleased to partner with AIM to strengthen our efforts to help companies expand their sales in-state,” said Secretary Bialecki.

Founding Supporters of BuyMass include:

Raytheon Company
GE Aviation
Procter & Gamble | Gillette
New Balance
DePuy Companies of Johnson & Johnson
NYPRO, Inc.
Mestek, Inc.
Solutia, Inc.
Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Salem Five
Chase Corporation
Sturtevant, Inc.
Roxbury Technology Corporation
Humboldt Storage and Moving
Universal Plastics
Artaic LLC
Mylec, Inc.

Topics: Associated Industries of Massachusetts, Economic Development, Deval Patrick, BuyMass

Raytheon Meets Potential Suppliers at BuyMass Event in Springfield

Posted by Christopher Geehern on May 6, 2011 8:26:00 AM

What do you get when you combine global defense and technology leader Raytheon with 15 Massachusetts companies offering world-class technology and processes in everything from materials to computer software?

Raytheon“A really great opportunity to do more business and to grow,” said one participant in the inaugural BuyMass supplier matchmaking event yesterday in Springfield.

Raytheon met throughout the day at the Springfield Technology Park with companies it had selected for their ability to address the company’s interest in sonar technologies, command and control systems, renewable energy storage and other areas. The strict pre-qualification process meant that Raytheon will follow up with virtually all of the companies with which it spoke.

Raytheon representative also attended a luncheon at which Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Gregory Bialecki, Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno and regional development executives discussed the economic assets of the Pioneer Valley.

BuyMass is a joint business-development initiative of Associated Industries of Massachusetts and Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development. The collaboration is intended to encourage Massachusetts companies to develop regional supply networks and commercial relationships with other employers in the commonwealth.  

 Yesterday’s matchmaking event was conducted in partnership with the Economic Development Council of Western Massachusetts (EDC).

“The matchmaking event gives Raytheon the opportunity to find innovative and world-class suppliers in western Massachusetts while allowing companies here in the Valley to speak directly about their technologies and products to one of the world’s foremost companies,” said Allan Blair, President of the EDC.

Raytheon has 1,700 subcontractors in the state doing about $600 million a year in business, said Dennis G. Austin, director of state government relations for Raytheon.

Richard C. Lord, President of Associated Industries of Massachusetts and Chief Executive of the BuyMass initiative, said the idea of regional matchmaking events comes directly from the companies such as Raytheon, Procter & Gamble|Gillette, General Electric and Solutia that support and advise BuyMass.

“These companies want efficient opportunities to establish relationships that will create revenue, growth and jobs throughout the Massachusetts economy. The fact that Raytheon stepped forward to participate in the Springfield event underscores the company’s longtime dedication to improving the Massachusetts manufacturing economy,” Lord said.

Bialecki told the group that the matchmaking events are intended to help both larger companies and smaller potential suppliers from Massachusetts discover legitimate opportunities for doing business. The Patrick administration, according to Bialecki, will not pressure companies like Raytheon to buy goods or services that are not in the best interests of their companies, but rather invite them to participate because there is measurable benefit.

Read The Springfield Republican article.

Topics: Associated Industries of Massachusetts, Economic Development, BuyMass

Massachusetts Companies Find Opportunity Close to Home

Posted by Christopher Geehern on Dec 13, 2010 10:58:00 AM

Massachusetts employers continue to discover that the best source of revenue growth and productive business relationships is often right down the road here in the Bay State.

BuyMassAnd Associated Industries of Massachusetts continues to help by matching buyers and sellers through its year-old BuyMass initiative.

Consider the case of Craven & Ober Policy Strategists, LLC, a 10-year-old Boston-based government relations and issues management firm that recently needed information technology consulting services related to security, backup and general computer maintenance. 

Partner Gloria Craven said the firm worked through the AIM BuyMass program to locate qualified companies that might help them. They received referrals to several companies before eventually deciding to work with MB DataSystems, Inc. of Franklin, a nine-year-old fellow AIM member company that provides a full range of IT services for small to medium-sized businesses in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut.

“We interviewed MB Data Systems and found their services to be a good fit for our firm, reasonably priced and very accessible when needed.  MB Data Systems customized our contract to fit the needs of our business,” Craven said.

Michael Boulanger, President of MB DataSystems, said his company was pleasantly surprised when AIM introduced a potential new client.

“It’s a benefit of AIM membership we did not know existed,” Boulanger said.

Associated Industries of Massachusetts believes that the development of business relationships among Massachusetts companies is critical to long-term economic vitality of the commonwealth. The belief is so strong that AIM created the BuyMass.org online business-to-business directory last year as a “statewide buy local” initiative to generate commercial activity among Massachusetts companies.

The BuyMass initiative is supported by the Massachusetts Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development and overseen by an advisory committee of large companies that share a commitment to buying products and services close to home when possible.

AIM also promotes regional supply networks by supporting events such as GE Aviation’s successful Indirect Sourcing Small Business Meeting at its Lynn facility on August 18.

Richard C. Lord, President and Chief Executive Officer of AIM, said the development of a business relationship between Craven & Ober and MB DataSystems underscores the fact that doing business in Massachusetts helps small companies as well as huge, multinational players.

“How many times do we drive past an office building or plant and not realize that those companies are potential suppliers?" said. "AIM believes that making connections among Massachusetts companies is a practical way to jump-start the economic recovery for everybody.”

AIM members receive a complimentary Showcase-level listing on the BuyMass.org directory.

Topics: Associated Industries of Massachusetts, AIM, Massachusetts economy, Massachusetts employers, BuyMass

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