Editor’s note: Harry Moser’s
column will appear every other
month. Has your company reshored
production? Are you thinking
about it? We’d like to hear
from you. We would love to report
on your successes or opportunities
in future issues. Contact harry.
When pilots fly the Boeing Co. Dreamliner 787-9 over Utah, they probably don’t point out to passengers the headquarters of Orbital ATK’s aerospace structures division (ASD) in the town of Clearfield. Nevertheless, it’s safe to assume they’re happy the facility is there.
Although being part of an international conglomerate has its advantages (such as extensive financial resources and access to cutting-edge technologies), a company still must make good products to establish and expand its customer base. This statement definitely applies to Canadian bus manufacturer Nova Bus Inc., which began in 1993 and has been part of Volvo Bus Corp.—the world’s largest motorcoach and transit bus manufacturer—since 1998.
Product designers, like manufacturers, face the daily challenge of creating original, quality products that fit market needs. Based in Dublin, the Klickity Co. has been meeting this challenge as both a product design firm and a manufacturer since 2010. Founded by industrial designer Kate Cronin, the company specializes in sustainable and affordable contemporary home accessories and LED-based gifts.
This November marks 10 years that Thermo Fisher Scientific has been manufacturing, storing and delivering essential consumables to life-science researchers worldwide. Workers at Thermo Fisher’s global manufacturing and distribution center in Frederick, MD, fill orders by picking from thousands of unique stock keeping units (SKUs), including many products that must be preserved in a cooler or freezer.
MBX Systems has had a clearly defined relationship with its independent software vendor (ISV) customers since the day the company opened for business in 1995. For more than 20 years, MBX has focused on designing and manufacturing custom hardware—so the ISVs can focus on developing and selling their software for mass or niche markets. The setup has benefitted both parties.
Traditionally, it has taken months or even years to get equipment to astronauts up in space, depending on the launch re-supply schedule. Zero-gravity 3D printing, however, may soon completely eliminate the need to send parts or equipment to spacecraft.
Times were tough for the Timken Co. at the start of the 21st century. In March 2000, the Canton, OH-based manufacturer of antifriction roller bearings and related components announced plans to cut 600 jobs worldwide—after having trimmed 1,700 jobs in the previous two years. It also closed plants in Australia and England, and was relying more heavily on sources of steel outside the United States.