Welcome to the IMA Executive News & Views Blog. The blog format reflects our efforts to provide IMA members with timely, relevant and thought provoking information in a form that is accessible for easy reference. IMA’s Executive News & Views Blog will be updated on a regular basis. Weekly news update emails will be sent out to notify subscribers of new information posted on the blog. IMA members are welcome to submit material for the blog, or request specific information. Simply email Editor Stefany Henson at shenson@ima-net.org with your information or request. Editorial submissions are subject to review. 

Wednesday
Aug262015

MEDICA 2015 in Germany (November 16-19) is the largest show in the world

Join us at MEDICA 2015

MEDICA 2015 in Dusseldorf, Germany (November 16-19) is the largest and most prestigious medical technology show in the world, with over 5,000 exhibitors and over 135,000 international visitors. The U.S. Commercial Service’s Corporate Executive Office (CEO) Program offers a unique way for U.S. firms to optimize their participation in this show.

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Wednesday
Aug262015

SPI to Launch New Trade Show Serving Plastics Manufacturer’s MRO Needs

MRO Expo to feature Maintenance, Repair, and Operations products and services

The Plastics Industry Trade Association announced its newest event, MRO Expo, scheduled for June 8 -9, 2016 at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, IL, just 1.7 miles from Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport. Produced by the same team that brings you NPE, MRO Expo is designed to assist those manufacturing professionals who are responsible for ensuring production lines and facility operations are running efficiently and at full capacity. Whereas the triennial NPE services a broad spectrum of plastics machinery and services, the annual MRO Expo will service an ongoing need for auxiliary equipment, mold components, replacement parts or upgrades to primary equipment, as well as maintenance supplies and services processors and manufacturers require on a regular basis.

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Wednesday
Aug192015

Risk vs. Reward: Auto Suppliers Execute Key Strategies for Global Expansion

From IMA member Plante Moran …

Given the contrast between North America’s stable economy and the rollercoaster markets in regions like Russia, Brazil, and China, a supplier might be forgiven for staying close to home.

Alas, that’s not an option these days. Virtually every major automaker has developed global platforms for its product lineup, and suppliers are expected to support these programs.

With that in mind, how should a manufacturer build factories in a new region without undue risk? The auto industry’s suppliers have been wrestling with this problem for the past 20 years.

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Wednesday
Aug192015

Go global with the SBA: Exporting

Have you ever asked how you can expand your business abroad? More than 95 percent of potential customers for U.S. small businesses live outside the country’s borders, providing you great opportunity for expansion.

On August 27, 2015, at 10 a.m. CDT the Illinois District Office of the U.S. Small Business Administration will host a webinar to introduce you to international markets and educate you on how to use our network of government resources for exporting goods and services.

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Wednesday
Aug192015

Where in the World? Manufacturing Index 2015

From Cushman & Wakefield’s Global Report

The third annual edition of Cushman & Wakefield’s global report — Where in the World? Manufacturing Index 2015 – addresses the “Winds of Change” in the manufacturing sector, assessing how political, economic, technological and environmental risks are managed during portfolio assessment and site selection. This report provides a barometer for manufacturers to assess their real estate strategies against an index, ranking the top 30 global manufacturing locations defined by output and the top 15 locations witnessing the most prominent growth. 

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Tuesday
Aug112015

U.S. Trade Deficit Widened in June; Manufactured Goods Exports Down Year-to-Date

Posted by Chad Moutray, NAM

The U.S. Census Bureau and the Bureau of Economic Analysis said that the U.S. trade deficit widened somewhat in June. The trade deficit rose from $40.94 billion in May to $43.84 billion in June, its highest level in three months. This was largely the result of an increase in goods imports, up from $188.40 billion to $191.06 billion. Goods exports were marginally lower, down from $127.79 billion to $127.56 billion. With that said, despite shifts from month-to-month, the U.S. trade deficit has not changed much over the past year and a half. It averaged $42.62 billion in the first half of 2015, which is only slightly higher than the $42.36 billion average observed in all of 2014.

Looking specifically at goods exports, U.S. firms exported more consumer goods (up $795 million) and automotive vehicles (up $62 million) in June. However, these gains were offset by declining exports for non-automotive capital goods (down $795 million), industrial supplies and materials (down $617 million) and foods, feeds and beverages (down $460 million).

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Tuesday
Aug112015

Advocacy Launches New Blog

The Office of Advocacy has launched its newly redesigned blog that can be found at https://advocacysba.sites.usa.gov.

The new blog has a more modern aesthetic designed to deliver Advocacy news and information in a more effective and user-friendly manner. Advocacy also aims to engage readers in a dialogue by offering the ability to post comments on articles. Advocacy’s blog features a variety of articles on small business topics, including regulatory updates, economic reports, and regional news.

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Tuesday
Aug042015

IMA Manufacturing Roundtable with Congressman Adam Kinzinger, August 6th in Rockford

The Illinois Manufacturers’ Association and SPX Hydraulic will be hosting a manufacturing roundtable with Congressman Adam Kinzinger on Thursday, August 6 in Rockford. This is your opportunity to meet with the congressman and IMA legislative affairs staff to let them know what can be done to help your business grow.

The event is free and open to all IMA members. You’re also encouraged to extend the invitation to your friends in the manufacturing community who would be interested in learning more about legislative issues affecting manufacturers, even though they are not yet IMA members. This is also an excellent opportunity to network with your fellow manufacturers in the Rockford area.

IMA Manufacturing roundtable with Congressman Adam Kinzinger hosted by SPX Hydraulic Technologies

When: Thursday, August 6, 1:00-2:00 pm

Where: SPX Hydraulic Technologies, 5885 11th Street, Rockford

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Tuesday
Aug042015

Matchmaking manufacturers for supply chain success

By Amy Fitzgerald, IMEC

Manufacturing matchmaking has been on the forefront of the Illinois Manufacturing Excellence Center’s event calendar continuing now into its second year.  IMEC has been reaching out to a diverse group of partners throughout the state in an effort for manufacturing representatives to meet with potential new customers and suppliers.  IMEC is positioned to help manufacturers increase sales opportunities and gain a footing in regional and global supply chains.

The matchmaking and networking events  have a structured opportunity to network with potential customers and suppliers by sharing information, samples and more; similar to “speed-dating” but for suppliers and end users.

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Tuesday
Jul282015

Health Care Top Business Challenge for Manufacturers

NAM White Paper Highlights 78.2 Percent Increase in Expenditures Over Next Decade — by Mallory Micetich, NAM

The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) released a white paper on July 23rd, titled “Shaping Up: Manufacturers Seek Flexible Health Care Options to Reduce Costs,” that examines health care costs, outlook and changes relating to the Affordable Care Act.

“Health care spending and rising costs continue to hurt manufacturers’ competitiveness and inject uncertainty into their operations,” said NAM Vice President of Human Resources Policy Joe Trauger. “Manufacturers need a solution that reduces costs and addresses the inefficiencies and problems that cost manufacturing in the United States billions of dollars a year.”

Key highlights from the white paper include the following:

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