News and Analysis
From Deloitte Global’s recent survey of more than 2,000 C-suite executives: “Companies are beginning to understand the massive impact of Industry 4.0 and the role of technology in fundamentally transforming business models and processes.” Read the report. 2/27/2020
It’s encouraging to see Ohio play a key role in developing autonomous vehicle technology. See this report on a pilot project in Columbus called Linden LEAP — the country’s first public self-driving shuttle in a residential area. 2/27/2020
Among the bills on the OMA’s radar this session is House Bill 380, legislation that would require owners of private construction projects (including manufacturers who are building, improving or maintaining facilities in Ohio) to pay contractors within 30 days — or face a whopping 18% interest rate.
The OMA’s legal counsel, Bricker & Eckler LLP, has published this memo to break down the bill’s flawed approach, noting that HB 380 “fails to take into account the standard payment processes that currently exist under virtually every industry standard construction contract.”
Concerned members are invited to comment and join the discussion at the March 4 OMA Government Affairs Committee meeting. 2/26/2020
As Ohio manufacturers look for new export opportunities, the U.S. Commercial Service (CS) — part of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration — wants OMA members to know it offers companies a full range of expertise in international trade.
With experts in more than 80 countries, CS provides free, personalized counseling at every step of your export journey — including in the areas of strategy and planning, financing and logistics, market entry and expansion, advocacy and dispute resolutions, and even eCommerce counseling. For more information, email Darren Srebnick or call (614) 273-5157. 2/25/2020
This week, Consul General Tsutomu Nakagawa from the Detroit office of the Consulate General of Japan dropped by the OMA. Among the issues discussed with OMA President Eric Burkland were Ohio’s manufacturing economy, workforce development, automation and robotics, and free trade.
Japan’s businesses are among Ohio’s leading foreign investors. With 484 Japanese-owned facilities, the Buckeye State has nearly 76,000 jobs as a direct result of Japanese investment. 2/20/2020
Ohio Development Services Agency (DSA) Director Lydia Mihalik has announced that early next month, her agency will host representatives from Japan’s Small and Medium Enterprises and Regional Innovation (SME SUPPORT JAPAN). The organization operates within Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.
Director Mihalik has invited OMA members to attend and learn how DSA’s relationship with SME SUPPORT JAPAN can benefit Ohio businesses. The meeting will take place Wednesday, March 4, from 3 to 4:30 p.m. in conference rooms South B and C on the 31st floor of the Vern Riffe Center, 77 S. High St., Columbus. For more information, email DSA. 2/18/2020
Ohio manufacturers are optimistic about their 2020 growth prospects, with more than 70% expecting higher revenue this year. That’s the finding from a new statewide survey of 673 Ohio manufacturers in more than 25 subsectors of the industry. Conducted by Northeast Ohio’s MAGNET and the Ohio Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), the survey also found:
- Retention and development of current employees — along with recruitment of new ones — is the top priority of Ohio manufacturers. In Northeast Ohio alone, there are roughly 8,000 open manufacturing jobs today.
- Nearly 60% of Ohio manufacturers said the skilled worker shortage was the top factor hindering their growth, followed by rising health care costs (30%), retirement of current workers (26%), and the rising cost of raw materials (25%).
- Ohio manufacturers are falling behind on Industry 4.0 adoption, particularly small- and medium-sized firms.
Last week, MAGNET president and CEO Ethan Karp joined a panel of manufacturing executives to discuss the survey results at a City Club of Cleveland forum. Next month, on March 10, FASTLANE — West Central Ohio’s MEP — will host an event to review the survey’s findings. 2/17/2020
One of the benefits of OMA membership is discounted shipping prices, thanks to the OMA’s partnership with UPS. Members can save 50% on Domestic Next-Day/Deferred, 30% on Ground Commercial/Residential, 10% on Domestic Next-Day Air® Early, 75% or more on less-than-truckload freight shipments over 150 lbs., and up to 50% on additional services.
Also, take advantage of UPS Smart Pickup® — a free service that uses innovative technology to automatically arrange a pickup only when you have a package to ship. To enroll, click here or call 1-800-MEMBERS. 2/17/2020
Gallup reports that small-business owners are highly engaged in the 2020 presidential election campaign, as 60% say they are paying “a lot” and 30% “some” attention to it.
According to findings from Gallup’s Jan. 15-24 nationwide online survey of small-business owners, 60% approve of the job that Donald Trump is doing as president. When presented a list of six federal policy issues important to small businesses, taxes (32%) received the most mentions, followed by regulations (21%), health care (20%), tariffs (15%), climate change (7%), and immigration (5%). 2/11/2020
This week, the Ohio Office of Budget and Management (OBM) released its monthly financial report. Findings include:
- The Leading Index for Ohio — which predicts growth over the next six months — increased to 1.3% in December, up slightly from 1.2% in November.
- In January, Ohio’s general revenue fund exceeded revenue estimates by $44.7 million (2.0%). Year-to-date tax revenues are $138 million (1.0%) above forecasts.
- Ohio’s manufacturing production increased 0.2% in December after a 1% increase the previous month.
OBM notes that the Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) increased to above the neutral level after five consecutive months of contraction, “suggesting the trend in manufacturing activity might be turning up.” 2/10/2020