Monday, May 21, 2007

Cambridge’s Manufacturing Focus

When I first toured Cambridge, MN (population 5,520) in 2005 I was impressed with their manufacturing diversity and Tom Willett’s, head of ED, aggressive approach to expanding his manufacturing base. I was not surprised when I learned of Cambridge’s recent successes.

Earlier this year St. Louis-based Leggett & Platt Inc announced that they were going to close their Cambridge plant. Willett marshaled resources in the community including almost $5 million in local financing and helped to find a new buyer for the business to secure 84 local jobs in Cambridge.

Other successes in Cambridge this year include Mape USA, an Italian manufacturer of integrated systems (connecting rods, crank shafts and cam shafts) for firms like Polaris, Artic Cat and Mercury Marine new plant, an expansion by U. S. Water Services, a water treatment company, Adventure Publications and Schlagel (grain handling equipment).

It is a good time to be fishing for manufacturing expansions. The fish are biting and if you have your line in the water like Tom Willett in Cambridge, MN you’ve got a good chance of pulling in some nice ones.

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