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How West Michigan's Innovative Manufacturers are Reinventing Supply Chains

11/2/2023 - Michigan is a unique player among states, with a robust infrastructure dedicated to economic development. The Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) takes proactive steps to address critical infrastructure issues and is working closely with organizations such as the Pure Michigan Business Connect team, which coordinates regional supplier matches and events, aiding procurement and identifying manufacturers with specific capabilities. Rebekah McCarter, lead supplier scout for MMTC, says there was a big push for nationwide supply chain innovation when the COVID-19 pandemic hit. That need hasn’t changed since. Read the full article from rapidgrowthmedia.com. 

Fourth Industrial Revolution – Manufacturers Need To Get On Board Or Get Left Behind

10/18/2023 - The Fourth Industrial Revolution, dubbed I4.0, goes far beyond the robots introduced to the factory floor in the last century to include automation, data interchange, and contemporary manufacturing technology. I4.0 includes computing, Artificial Intelligence (AI), 3D Printing, and the incorporation of advanced sensors for predictive machinery maintenance. If Michigan continues to wear the crown as the world’s leading manufacturing region it’s 100-year-old plus manufacturing sector needs to embrace these technologies to compete with the rapidly retooling rest of the world. Read the full article from mitechnews.com. 

Consortium Led by U-M Awarded Federal Grant to Boost Energy Storage, Battery Technologies

10/17/2023 - A statewide consortium led by the University of Michigan Economic Growth Institute has received $4.9 million from the U.S. Department of Defense to create the foundation for energy storage and battery manufacturing. Through a series of technical assistance, technology acceleration and workforce training initiatives, funds under this award will be applied to make long-term investments in advanced research and commercialization, critical skills and supply chain development in order to strengthen the defense industrial base. MMTC is a consortium member. Read the full article from news.umich.edu. 

Automation Transition Requires ‘Digital Mindset,’ Michigan Manufacturing Leader Says

8/14/2023 - Remaining competitive in Michigan’s manufacturing space will require owners of all sizes of businesses to shift their mindset beyond simply buying equipment to automate their processes. U.S. Sen. Gary Peters, D-Michigan, last month reintroduced legislation — known as the Workforce Data for Analyzing and Tracking Automation Act — to evaluate the effects that automation has had on the manufacturing sector to help inform workforce development strategies. With support from the Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center MMTC, the legislation would authorize the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics to measure job displacement, the number of new jobs created and the shifting of in-demand skills. Read the full article at www.crainsgrandrapids.com. 

WHITE HOUSE BRIEFING: Invest in America

7/28/2023 - The Biden-Harris Administration met with representatives from more than manufacturers, manufacturing experts, and manufacturers’ associations to discuss how small and medium-sized domestic manufacturers can participate in the Investing in America agenda. During the event, Administration officials highlighted how the Administration’s work to invest in American infrastructure and clean energy is revitalizing America’s manufacturing base, promoting innovation, and creating high quality jobs. Read the full briefing from whitehouse.gov. 

How Lean can Attract & Retain Younger Members of the Workforce

5/24/2023 - In its early years, Lean often got a bad reputation as a downsizing program. It was believed that if a company of 50 employees became Lean, they likely would not need everyone anymore, causing people to be let go. Today’s work environment is quite different. Many companies cannot find enough employees to fill their teams – and I don’t know anyone who has a “people closet” from which they can just pull more resources. Read the full article from mimfg.org. 

The Center Awarded Funding to Help Ease Supply Chain Issues

5/10/2023 - The Center was awarded $400,000 in federal funding designed to help companies in Michigan bolster their supply chains. The funding comes from the National Institute of Standards and Technology's Expansion Awards Pilot Program, according to a Tuesday news release. The program is part of the CHIPS and Science Act, passed into law in August. Read the full article from crainsdetroit.com. 

Macomb Business Awards Honors Area Companies and Nonprofits

5/5/2023 - A company that makes suspension systems for military vehicles, a grassroots organization that takes a compassionate approach to working with substance abusers, and a technology center dedicated to supporting manufacturers were among local businesses honored Thursday in Mount Clemens. Read the full article at www.macombdaily.com. 

Peters Reintroduces Bipartisan Bill to Advance U.S. Manufacturing Policy and Competitiveness

4/6/2023 - U.S. Senator Gary Peters (MI) reintroduced bipartisan legislation to advance U.S. manufacturing policy and economic competitiveness by establishing a National Manufacturing Advisory Council within the U.S. Department of Commerce. The National Manufacturing Advisory Council – made up of manufacturers, labor representatives, and academic experts – would serve as a bridge between the manufacturing sector and federal government to improve communication on their needs. Read the full article from www.peters.senate.gov.

Walmart, Kroger Shopping Scooter Supplier Races to Meet Demand

3/16/2023 - Bridgeport-based Amigo Mobility International Inc. had a problem. The nation's largest manufacturer of motorized manufacturing carts could not wheel them off the line fast enough to meet demand from stores flush with cash amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The family-owned company, whose biggest customers include Walmart Inc. and Kroger Co., has seen top-line growth of 25 percent for the past two years as it plans to hit $50 million in revenue this year. Headcount has grown at a similar clip, to about 145, with eight positions still open. With the help of a $10,000 grant through the Great Lakes Bay Manufacturers Association, the company hired the Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center in 2021 to figure out why it couldn't churn out more than 80 units per day. Read the full article from crainsdetroit.com. 

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