Manufacturers interested in learning about diversification opportunities in growing market segments: wind and other renewable energy technologies, aerospace and high speed rail, and medical devices and equipment should attend the IMEC Supply Chain Conference being held in Chicago on May 11 at UIC.
To see the agenda, click here.
During the past several years, McHenry County EDC, McHenry County College, the Workforce Investment Board, the McHenry County Workforce Network and McHenry County government have collaborated to seek grant funding for the Flexible and Sustainable Training (F.A.S.T.) initiative.
The F.A.S.T. initiative, which works with local employers to identify workforce needs, provides targeted training in these areas of need. Official notification of the $250,000 grant award was received this week. This grant supports the second round of the F.A.S.T. initiative and will be used for Advanced CNC Machining, EKG Healthcare Training and Home Health Aid training.
Stairglow® Introduces a New Line of patented photoluminescent products unlike anything offered on the market today for Life Safety applications.
Farmington Hills, MI – When Stairglow® was looking for a supplier to provide light stable photoluminescent thermoplastic material for their new line of life safety products they choose Chroma Corporation. The material supplier developed a light stable photoluminescent compound for Stairglow’s® line of IBC Compliant patented life safety products which include; Stairnosings, Handrail covers, and Kick plates.
This new product offering is truly unique. The old glow materials, based on zinc sulfide would not glow after 100 hours of exposure to outdoor light.Chroma’s new Photoluminescent products are designed for use both indoors and outdoors. Some products have been measured to glow for 32+ hours!
Bob Bunday Promoted to Laboratory Manager at Chroma Corporation
We are proud to announce the promotion of
Bob has been with Chroma for over 20 years. In addition to his rotomolding experience, Bob has a tremendous amount of production, lab (both quality control and color matching) and supervisory experience. We wish him the best of luck in his new position.
Press Release March 31, 2011
Phone: 815-385-8100 - Fax: 815-385-1518
Contact: Stuart D. Swain, Director of Sales and Marketing
Chemical Safety Workshop for small manufacturers with 250 or fewer employees
With help from a grant from the U.S. Department of Labor, IMEC is providing in-depth training and technical assistance - at no cost - to enable Illinois manufacturers to recognize, prevent, and avoid workplace safety and health hazards associated with exposure to chemical agents.
The workshop will integrate safety and health responsibilities, with management techniques and operational tactics. IMEC safety experts will train your employees to recognize areas that may expose them to hazardous situations while they perform their job functions. They'll learn:
Interesting article from the Harvard Business School on manufacturing. See the link below:
2011 Go Global Conference
Clock Tower Resort and Conference Center
April 12 - 13, 2011
Why Companies are Going Global (and you should be, too!)
Kiss, Bow or Shake Hands (Importing, Exporting and Everything in Between), will emphasize building successful relationships both domestic and foreign - as a key to success in the world of global trade.
Alliance will help manufacturers improve environmental practices
IMEC and the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center combining forces to drive sustainability
[Oak Brook] – Helping Chicago area manufacturers reduce the impacts of their operations on the environment and improve profits is the aim of a newly created strategic alliance between the Illinois Manufacturing Extension Center (IMEC) and the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center (ISTC).
Under the agreement, the two non-profit business assistance organizations will jointly conduct in-depth assessments of manufacturing production processes, and deliver training and technical support to help companies prevent pollution, divert solid waste from landfills, and increase energy efficiency. The collaboration will also focus on providing manufacturers with information on waste-reducing technologies and sustainable management practices.
EDC President Pam Cumpata represented the McHenry County EDC at the Nippon Sharyo supplier forum on March 7th.
Over 150 companies attended the event organized by Congressman Don Manzullo. Nippon Sharyo is establishing a railcar production facility in Rochelle, Il and is increasing its regional supplier base.
If you would like more information or a 'connection', please call the EDC.
RINGWOOD, IL – Burnex Corporation has moved to a new 18,500- square-foot manufacturing and corporate office building located at 5418 Business Parkway in Ringwood, Illinois. The change enhances production space and efficiency for the company’s unique planetary geared stamping and bending presses.
Founded in 1972 by Manfred Suhr and a partner who was later bought out, Burnex was based in Algonquin from 1992 through 2010. Growth and opportunity enabled the team to seek a new facility in 2009. “After much searching, we determined that building new would be more cost-effective than retro-fitting an existing structure,” explains Manfred Suhr, CEO.
Family-owned and operated, Burnex Corporation pioneered the planetary geared high speed stamping & bending machines and also operates traditional stamping punch presses. The planetary geared high speed stamping and bending machines have a center component which rotates and draws tools to form the product. Burnex is the only manufacturer which uses this equipment in a job-shop atmosphere. The result is the flexibility to change between production jobs like conventional punch presses at a competitive cost and consistent quality.
Jack Pease, president of Fox Development in McHenry, Illinois was engaged to build the new manufacturing and corporate offices from pre-cast construction. According to Manfred and Scott Suhr, from the purchase of property to occupancy was just six months due to “superb” project management and direction by Pease. The building has windows to maximize natural light and energy-efficient overhead lighting; the lot is 2.5 acres, allowing for future expansion.
Burnex employees and supervisors were involved in the space planning and production flow. Scott Suhr reports, “Everyone had a part in the planning for the new space. As a result, we have improved our production process and everyone has equity in the outcome.” Many of the company’s employees have been with the organization for over 15 years.
With over $5 million in sales, Burnex prides itself on putting the customer first, providing both custom and stock products. In addition to production “Our engineering department has the capability to translate all CAD formats. Just another convenience to our customers for improved quality and delivery”, said Scott Suhr. “We continually invest in people and technology to put Burnex ahead of the competition.”
For more information, visit BurnexCorp.com or call Matt Gilmore, Regional Sales Engineer, at 815.728.1317, extension 204.
New equipment? More space? Need financing options? Attend March 10th, Finance Forum at the Shah Center, 4100 W. Shamrock Lane, McHenry. 7:30 - 10:00 am - Continental breakfast provided. Click here to register - there is no cost for this event.
This Finance Forum, presented by the EDC and our partners at the Small Business Development Center (SBDC), is designed to provide an information on financing your business, ongoing physical expansion - building and./or equipment and revenue growth.
We will discuss outlining a financing package and why it is important. Do you have the right partners ie. CPA, Attorney, Management Team, Financing partners. There will be four breakout sessions to cover topics and provide opportunities for questions. Attendees will be able to participate in two different breakout sessions.
A. SBA - Speakers Steve Konkle and Bill Kornit of SomerCor - The SBA’s role is an important one for people who want to finance or grow their business. When you apply for a SBA-backed loan at your local bank or credit union, you are asking SBA to provide a guarantee that you will repay your loan as promised. Hear from Steve Konkle, how the many SBA programs work with your financial institution to provide the capital (funding) you need to purchase equipment, real estate or working capital. In addition to guarantees to your financial institution, the SBA also provides Export Assistance Loans, Veteran and Military Community Loans and Special Purpose Loans.
B. Commercial Banks - Roger Weis of Castle Bank - Castle Bank is a commercial/business bank with traditional loan structure and resources. Roger Weis, Senior Vice President of Commercial Banking will provide an overview of senior debt lending and cash management services available in today’s market. Senior debt borrowing can be a stand along relationship or can be combined with SBA 504 program guarantees. Mr. Weis will also provide information on necessary items for a financial packet.
C. Private Equity - Private Equity is another tool to expand your business. At its core, private equity is simple: PE firms establish funds that raise capital from investors — who are referred to as limited partners, or LPs. The private equity firms — known as general partners, or GPs — invest their own capital along with the capital raised from investors. They borrow additional funds from banks and other lenders. With the combination of equity and the borrowed funds, the general partners buy companies that they believe could achieve significantly greater growth and profitability with the right infusion of talent and capital.
Typically, Private Equity firms hold an investment company for 5 years and then sell. PE firms partner with existing management.
D. Upper Illinois River Valley Development Authority - Andrew Hamilton - UIRVDA acts as a “conduit” or “middle-man” for issuing bonds. This authority is another tool to enhance traditional senior debt borrowing. The authority can issue taxable bonds, tax exempt bonds(Industrial Revenue Bonds for manufacturers). Typically, these bonds carry an interest rate that is up to 0.80% less than taxable bonds. In order to issue bonds, the bonds must have credit enhancement which means a senior lender needs to back the bonds. Obligation to repay the bonds is the borrowers hence the need for credit enhancement.
More Information on Somercor504: SomerCor 504, Inc. is a non-profit development company certified by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) to originate SBA 504 loans within the state of Illinois. SomerCor holds a portfolio in excess of $300 Million comprised of more than 600 loans. Somercor consistently ranks in the top 20 nationwide of all CDCs.
The 504 program helps healthy, for profit businesses with financing for projects involving the purchase, construction, or improvement of fixed assets. Banks and other lenders participate for 50% of the total project cost, while SomerCor finances 40% (up to $1.5 Million and even up to $4 Million in some cases) of the balance. This leaves only a 10% down payment for the business, helping it to preserve valuable working capital. The 504 program is a win-win arrangement. The business maximizes the amount of money it receives and the bank gets a first lien on all the assets with only a 50% loan to value. The business is happy and so is the bank.
SBA 504 20 year fixed rate loans for February have an interest rate of 5.82%. Come hear how to take advantage of a 20 year fixed rate loan.
Questions, contact MCEDC at 815.363.0444 as for Pam or Jean.
MCEDC is pleased to collaborate with Go Global IV to help grow the regional manufacturing economy. Only 45 minutes away in Rockford, this is a great opportunity to gain insight and direction into global reach.
Go Global IV: Kiss, Bow or Shake Hands (Importing, Exporting and Everything In Between)
April 12 & 13, 2011 - Go Global IV will emphasize building successful relationships both domestic and foreign - as a key to success in the world of global business.
Early bird registration by February 28, $110 - After 2/28 $135, $75 college/student rate http://www.goglobalrockford.com/registration.asp
AGENDA - Click here for full agenda
Terri Morrison, best selling co-author of Kiss, Bow or Shake Hands and President Getting Through Customs - Thomas Feifar, Director Foreign Military Parts, Navistar Defense, LLC Keys to Globalization Success - Dr. Chris Kuehl, Armada Corporate Intelligence - 2011 Year of the Transition
Congressman Don Manzullo is hosting an event on how to become a supplier to Nippon Sharyo USA, Inc.
This major passenger railcar manufacturer is establishing a railcar production facility in Rochelle and is interesting in increasing its regional suppliers.
When: Monday, March 7th, 10 am to 12 Noon
Where: Northern Illinois University, Rockford Education Center, 8500 E. State Street, Rockford.
REMINDER: Please complete your company profile on our Manfacturing Website www.illinoismanufacturing.NET - Click on Director and follow the directions. Username: Manufacturing - Password: Profile11. By doing so, we can more effectively target opportunities and events of interest for your company.
There are many positive indications that our local economy is moving ahead. Last week, through the EDC’s outreach efforts with Navistar, eighteen of our manufacturers participated in a Supplier Symposium. The feedback has been extremely positive. This effort is just one of several EDC initiatives which supports and focuses on our manufacturing sector which represents 25% of our economy.
Census figures indicate that McHenry County’s manufacturing sales rose nearly 35 percent from 2002 and 2007, according to an analysis of recent U.S. economic census figures. That rate of growth was second among Chicago’s collar counties and just fourth among 13 counties in northeastern Illinois and southeastern Wisconsin. Census figures also showed that, when adjusted for size, McHenry County is one of the most industrialized in the region, ranking third among the collar counties and fourth in the northwestern Illinois-southeastern Wisconsin area.
This combined with an increasingly diversified economy , made McHenry County one of the strongest economies in the entire region going into the recession and confirms our growing economic stature and solid economy. As county board chairman Ken Koehler said recently, “This is no accident. It is the result of years of smart-growth, pro-business policies by the County and hard work by the McHenry County EDC. This is a major reason why our unemployment rate has consistently been lower than in the rest of the state and the nation.”
In December 2010, McHenry County’s non-adjusted unemployment stood at 8.4 percent, lower than the area counties of Boone (14.3), Cook (8.9), Kenosha (9.1), Lake (9.6), Racine (8.5), Will (9.0) and Winnebago (12.7). Illinois state average stood at 8.4 percent and the U.S. average at 9.1 percent.
Total manufacturing revenues went from $3.94 billion in 2002 to $5.29 billion in 2007, and the sector accounts for nearly a quarter of earnings in the county. McHenry’s growth rate was outpaced only by Boone, Will and Kendall. The next U.S. economic census will take place in 2012.
These positive results are a result of the transformation of the county’s manufacturing base and diversification of the local economy, all of which buffered McHenry County against the worst of the economic crisis.
My family has been involved in farming for years and shares the pride of our rural roots, but we need to also celebrate that we are a modern business and industrial region with global reach.
The EDC’s analysis of census data also showed that the county boasts a rate of nearly two manufacturers per 1,000 residents, fourth overall after Winnebago and DuPage counties in Illinois and Walworth County in Wisconsin. There is no question the 2010 census and the 2012 economic census will show we took a hit, but this recession has been an equal-opportunity downturn and everyone has suffered. Our employment figures show we continue to benefit from a diverse base, strong economic policies, and the entrepreneurial culture in the county.
Although the number of manufacturing employers remained constant over the last decade at just around 600, there was significant modernization and a shift in the industrial make-up of the county’s industrial base toward high-tech.
While manufacturing sales are growing much faster in McHenry than almost anywhere else in the region, the distribution of corporate earnings within the county shows an increasing diversification of the economy. Our figures show manufacturing accounted for 25 percent of earnings in the county. But among the sectors with earnings of $25 million or more in the county, administrative services, health care, wholesale trade, finance & insurance and professional services all experienced earnings growth of 25 percent or more between 2002 and 2007.
The good news is that manufacturing became more robust over the last decade thanks to a transformation toward more high-value goods and high-tech. The other good news is other sectors are catching up in the county, and our diversified economy allows us to weather tough times better than most, and grow even more in future good times.
McHenry County EDC continually works to attract new investment and to help existing businesses thrive. We believe that McHenry County is the place to be for employers of choice who seek a supportive business climate and a strong quality of life.