"Over the roughly three year period in which we utilized Trade Adjustment Assistance funds, we literally transformed our manufacturing operations from an outdated MRP based system with huge inventories, long lead times and inefficient use of human resources. We are now operating a lean manufacturing based shop floor based on Just in Time fabrication and delivery of parts, significant reductions in inventory on hand, lead time reductions and lower payroll costs. Our inventory turns have increased from a 10-year average of 6 turns per year prior to lean, to 10 turns per year currently. In the last 5 years we have doubled our annual revenues while maintaining or reducing the number of employees on our payroll."
Randy Bell, Vice President
Pearson Packaging Systems
"NorthwestTAAC funds allowed us to put down a strong foundation that should start showing results in the next 12 months. In short, the funding has supported research to develop a strategy, product development to create products that fit the strategy, and a sales piece to communicate the strategy. We expect to successfully launch a new product line which will help us effectively differentiate our company and better compete with commodity imports."
Roger Plant, Manager
Truitt Bros, Inc.
"The assistance we have received from NorthwestTAAC has enabled us to develop a proprietary alloy, implement an ERP system and greatly improve our web site. Last year was a record year for us; your funding has been very helpful."
Douglas James, Vice President - Finance
Jorgensen Forge Corporation
"Custom Interface received excellent support from NorthwestTAAC. All staff members we had contact with were thorough, professional and proactive in their efforts to make submission and compliance with the Trade Adjustment Assistance program easy for us. Since our company applied for program funding in 2003, sales have increased by $3 million and net profit is up 5%. All jobs lost to overseas competition have been regained and strategies developed through the program leave us well positioned for the next five years."
Nancy White, President
Custom Interface, Inc.
"The Northwest Trade Adjustment Assistance program has given North Star Ice Equipment Co. the ability to use an outside consultant to achieve a number of marketing projects that we would probably not have been able to conduct on our own, including developing new business strategies, identifying and evaluating new markets, and introducing new product lines and product improvements. These projects definitely helped us address our best opportunities for combating the significant import competition we face. The TAA process went very smoothly from start to finish and it was not in any way an administrative headache due to the continued assistance of the Northwest TAAC staff. Thank you very much for your contribution to North Star's success."
Alan Smyth, President
North Star Ice Equipment Co.
"Small U.S. manufacturers such as Ioline Corporation, which produce high quality products with as much as 93% U.S. parts content, are becoming rare. Assistance from NorthwestTAAC and similar programs help us stay competitive in a tough global market."
Frank Schimicci, President
"NorthwestTAAC was very helpful, offering financial assistance to obtain a new professional looking website and lean manufacturing techniques. Without their assistance, I don't think we could have afforded it on our own. Our company was able to improve our professional image and our manufacturing efficiencies with the help from NorthwestTAAC. This helps make PFM more competitive in the world marketplace. Thank you NorthwestTAAC."
Patrick F. Miller, President/CEO
"Because of these projects, we expect to launch our new product in January, three months ahead of schedule, so that we can have the benefit of increased sales in a shorter timeframe. Also, now we only cut one mold, rather than two, allowing us to spend approximately $15,000 in other investments that will also help increase sales."
Spencer Williams, President
West Paw Design
"We expect to increase our corporate gift program by 10%. We realized an overall 100% increase in gift basket business during our holiday season and this project was definitely a contributor to that success."
Diana Doran, General Manager
Southern Oregon Sales
"By partnering with NorthwestTAAC, Hillcrest began to regain control of its competitive edge and, in essence, its own destiny. Funds provided by the EDA and NorthwestTAAC gave Hillcrest the ability to add value to its pears, develop a brand, and open direct sales opportunities. Hillcrest now has a gift box program served by a new website, which allows customers to purchase pears directly. In addition, the gift box program and website have encouraged alliances with other regional artisan food producers to offer customers more choices and promote local agriculture and artisan foods. Funding has also allowed Hillcrest to research and develop several value added products that utilize less desirable pears, which further enhances the financial viability of the orchard. Working with NorthwestTAAC has proved to be a successful endeavor and has encouraged optimism and growth within our organization."
Cogswell LP dba Hillcrest Orchard
"As you are well aware, this industry has been brutalized by plummeting prices. This has meant mill curtailments and closures across the West and into Canada. While this is going on, we are adding a new machine center for processing small logs and adding employees. Your grant is part of the reason we are still a viable industry player and will continue to be for the foreseeable future."
Loren Rose, Comptroller
Pyramid Mountain Lumber
Seeley Lake, Montana
"With the help of our grant money from NorthwestTAAC, we were able to enhance web-based tools, increasing functionality, and also add completely new functions that were cost prohibitive without the funding. The benefits to our company are that it helps sales by aiding our customers as well as keeps our national sales team in touch. The advantage of having this extra cushion allowed us to make some "vision goals" and "wish list" items a reality. We are grateful for the help."
David Fenton, Director of Marketing
Idaho Falls, Idaho
"As a result of this project, we expect to be able to brand our company and its products on a scale we could not achieve without this help. Our industry is experiencing massive consolidation as the large companies grow larger, branding will become more and more critical to the family-run, quality-driven companies such as ours. Thank you for your kind assistance."
M. Brendan Mahaffey, General Manager/Partner
Best Fish dba Crab Fresh
"I believe that Trade Adjustment Assistance funds capture the best of America and foster what has been our cultural genius; constant regeneration through up swelling of ideas from people of all backgrounds. I appreciated that after Trade Adjustment established that we are people to be trusted, they gave us the funds along with the spending guidelines, and let us go to pursue our dream without requiring a discouraging and confusing amount of verification."
Shirley Zuanich, Owner
Lorax, Inc. dba Pure Alaska Salmon Company LLC
"We expect to increase our sales of smoked and fresh frozen seafood. With the NorthwestTAAC assistance we have been able to broaden the scope of our product lines and marketing, and we are seeing annual sales increases of 10-20% in a number of our products."
Erin Norman, General Manager
"It would have been difficult for our small company to complete work on these labels without the help of the NorthwestTAAC program. The grant monies have been a real boost to us, and though our relatively small in comparison to others, I believe the recovery of the Alaska salmon industry depends on the collaborative efforts of us all."
Wallace Fields, Vice President
Fields & Sons, Inc. dba Fields Wild Salmon
"In changing our focus from commercial fishing to wilderness charters, we faced a steep learning curve in marketing. Our NorthwestTAAC grant helped us to hire professionals to design effective promotional materials, and in the process taught us advertising and marketing strategies. As a result we are sold out and profitable sooner than expected."
Jim Kyle, Owner
Alaska on the Home Shore