The week began with the big celebration in Rochester, when Safran Aerospace Composites and Albany Engineered Composites celebrated their new manufacturing plant, where they’ll produce 3D woven composite parts for aircraft. ‘New to the world’ technology, officials explained, right here in the Granite State. Hundreds of jobs will be created over the next couple of years to meet the demand for these parts. It was a good news day.
As we wandered around the expo today, we may not have found that level of technology, but we marveled no less at what we saw – a better way to grate cheese and garlic, funky ways to display a good bottle of wine, the harmony of chocolate, caramel and sea salt in one sweet treat and soaps and lotions with a base not of fancy fragrances, but essential oils and natural herbs. We saw an enthusiasm from the creators of these products, reveling in the opportunity to retreat from their garages, workshops, kitchens and studios to introduce the world to what they do and to tell us why they do it.
Good stories, all.
Buying local has become an integral part of our lives, as we seek to know not only the ingredients in the foods we eat, but who is growing, cooking, baking and even boiling (as in maple syrup) what we put on our table. The answer is our friends and neighbors, the innovators and entrepreneurs next door. The small businesses who come to know us as we come to know them and who add a measure of something we can’t find anywhere else — the soul of New Hampshire.
So if you’re in the neighborhood this weekend, go spend a few hours at the expo and treat yourself to something made right here in the Granite State.
NH Division of Economic Development
Spring is in the air and if you’re an entrepreneur, this means one thing — business plan competition season. Over the next two months, entrepreneurs and start-up companies have the opportunity to win over $230,000 in cash and in-kind services through four start up competitions: The Dartmouth Ventures Entrepreneurial Contest, the MYPN Start Up Challenge, the Startup Rochester Business Competition and the Holloway Prize Innovation-to-Market Competition.
Ladies and Gentlemen, start your start-ups …
Dartmouth Ventures Entrepreneurial Contest
On Saturday (April 5), three start-up businesses will vie for $100,000 in cash and prizes at the Dartmouth Ventures Entrepreneurial Contest, open to anyone with a Dartmouth College affiliation. The contest is part of Dartmouth Ventures, an annual conference on entrepreneurship established in 2002.
All attendees of Dartmouth Ventures will have the opportunity to vote for a People’s Choice winner during the Entrepreneurial Contest. The People’s Choice winner will take home $2,500 in cash and additional in-kind services. For information on attending Dartmouth Ventures click here.
Holloway Prize Innovation-to-Market Competition
Similar to the Dartmouth Ventures competition, the Holloway Prize Innovation to Market Competition is hosted by the Paul School of Business at the University of New Hampshire, open to students within the University System of New Hampshire. The Holloway Prize is in its 26th year and has a history of applicants going on to create sustainable and profitable companies.
The most notable entry came from Joe Faro in 1991. He founded Tuscan Brands, Tuscan Market and Joseph’s Pasta, which he sold for $60 million to Nestle. Faro credits part of his success to his participation in the Holloway Prize, which encouraged him to create a business plan that was realistic and sustainable.
The Holloway Prize is worth over $100,000 in cash and in-kind services and championship round begins at 1 pm, May 7 at the Paul College. For more information on the Holloway Competition and the Charles and Miriam Nelson Poster Competition, click here.
MYPN Start Up Challenge
The Manchester Young Professionals Network started the MYPN Start Up Challenge in 2006 to encourage and promote entrepreneurship in the young professional community. The competition is open to New Hampshire start-ups and applications will be accepted until April 18. Over the past five years, $210,000 in cash and in-kind services have been awarded to New Hampshire startups. This year’s winner will receive more than $55,000 in cash and in-kind services.
One of the many start up success stories from the Start Up Challenge is Nearby Registry, which won in 2012. Allison Grappone’s 2009 wedding was the inspiration, when she and her husband channeled the frustration they had when they were unable to support their favorite local businesses through the traditional gift registry model. So like any entrepreneur, Grappone developed a website that enables people to create a registry for wedding, birthdays and other events using small businesses from all over the state. Since winning the Start Up Challenge, Nearby Registry has grown to three full-time staff and is expanding its business into Seattle, Portland, Ore., and Vermont. The company has signed on more than 150 storefronts in New Hampshire and Seattle and has kept over $18,000 and counting in the local economy.
The MYPN Start Up Challenge semi-final event is May 15 and the winner will be announced June 17 at the NHIOP at Saint Anselm College. To learn more about the MYPN Start Up Challenge or submit an application, click here.
Startup Rochester Business Competition
Similar to the MYPN Start Up Challenge, the Start Up Rochester Business Competition is open to New Hampshire startups that have not raised more than $100,000 in funding. Applications will be accepted until April 8.
This is the second year of the competition, which started as a partnership between the Rochester Community and Economic Development Division and the abi Innovation Hub. Last year’s winner, Kinetic Surface Control, is a growing company in Newmarket that develops technology to strip paint and corrosion from metal, concrete, asphalt and other surfaces. This year’s applicants will compete for a $20,000 cash-and-in-kind prize package at the final event on May 8. To learn more about the business competition or submit an application, click here.
New Hampshire is a great place to start and grow a business and these competitions are a perfect complement to the expanding New Hampshire start-up ecosystem, thanks to the incredible – and enthusiastic – efforts of our incubators around the state and the hundreds of start-ups created each year.
Dignitaries from New Hampshire and France took part in this morning’s ribbon cutting at Safran’s new manufacturing plant in Rochester.
This afternoon’s ribbon cutting in Rochester was so much more than the opening of a new manufacturing plant, where Safran and Albany International Corp. have co-located to produce composite parts for the US and French governments.
“This is a significant milestone, not only for our two companies, but for our customers and partners in the aerospace industry and for the city of Rochester and the state of New Hampshire,” said Joseph Morone, president and CEO of Albany International. “We are opening an identical sister plant in Commercy, France and this is a first of its kind in the aerospace industry. The manufacturing technology and the product being produced with that technology are new to the world …”
New to the world … right here in New Hampshire.
“What a great day for Rochester and New Hampshire,” said Gov. Maggie Hassan. “This is a shining example of the kind of innovative business that has New Hampshire as well-positioned as any state to lead the country in economic growth.”
Rochester Mayor TJ Jean called the grand opening of the plant a celebration “of the power of partnerships,” between the two companies, between the local, state and federal officials who made sure the resources would be available, and “the community college system, which will help train our workforce.”
As manufacturing ramps up in this new plant, hundreds of more jobs will be added to 130 already in place. They will work to produce 3D woven composite parts using RTM technology for aircraft engines parts.”Our presence in Rochester reflects our commitment to this state and the US,” said Jean-Paul Herteman, chairman and CEO of Safran. “Our aim is to continue to expand our position and to contribute to the development of the aerospace and security markets as an American company, to ensure optimum service for our civil and military customers here.”
More than an opening of a new manufacturing plant, today’s event clears New Hampshire’s aerospace and defense industries for take-off.
“This is new-to-the-world high impact technology,” Morone said.
Continuing her efforts to boost New Hampshire’s economy through the promotion of international trade, Governor Maggie Hassan will lead a delegation of New Hampshire businesses on a June trade mission to Turkey, where members will explore the increasing potential of a growing international market.
“To keep New Hampshire’s economy growing and creating jobs, we are focused on helping our businesses enter new markets and making the Granite State a leader in selling our goods and services around the world,” Gov. Hassan said. “This trade mission will build on the progress that helped make New Hampshire the fastest-growing state for exports in 2013 by helping our businesses find new opportunities in Turkey’s growing market.”
In 2013, Granite State companies and manufacturers exported more than $79 million in goods and services to Turkey. At the crossroads of Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East, Turkey is a regional commercial hub attracting the attention of American companies. The Department of Resources and Economic Development selected it as the trade mission destination after consultation with New Hampshire businesses.
“Turkey is New Hampshire’s 12th largest trading partner and there are increasing opportunities for our businesses, especially in areas such as aerospace and defense, health and medical technologies, education and construction machinery,” said Jeffrey Rose, commissioner of the Department of Resources and Economic Development.
Rokon International Inc., a leading manufacturer of all-wheel drive motorcycles whose products are used by military personnel, missionaries, farmers and hunters around the world, is one of five companies that have already signed up for the trade mission.
“At Rokon, we are always looking to find new markets abroad and joining the State of New Hampshire on this mission to Turkey is a great opportunity to increase exports and grow our business,” said Tom Blais, owner and CEO of Rokon.
The bipartisan budget Hassan signed last year increased international trade assistance and restored funding for trade missions to help businesses market and sell their products around the globe. Through November, business exports rose 22 percent in 2013, making New Hampshire the fastest-growing state in the nation for exports.
Organized in partnership with the Confederation of Businessmen and Industrialists of Turkey (TUSKON) and the Turkish Cultural Center in Manchester, the trade mission will take place June 20-27. TUSKON includes seven regional federations and more than 200 business associations, representing more than 140,000 firms in the Turkic region, which includes neighboring countries such as Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan. The organization will connect the trade mission’s participants with decision makers in business, government and higher education.
Companies interested in joining the trade mission are invited to attend an informational meeting at the Turkish Cultural Center, 540 Chestnut St., Manchester. The meeting will be held on April 2 at 8:30 a.m. and will feature Dr. Hakan Tasci of US-TUSKON and economist Mehmet Ozbes as speakers.
The cost for participation in the trade mission is $2,500, a reduced rate that is underwritten by TUSKON to promote the development and growth of the New Hampshire-Turkey partnership. The deadline for applications is April 25 and space is limited.
For more information, visit www.exportnh.org or call Tina Kasim, program manager for the New Hampshire International Trade Resource Center at 271-8444.
Great Bay Community College’s CNC training program is collaboration with SIG Sauer and our friends at AMPed NH explain its great value to students and employers. Ed.
Innovative boot-camp-style training programs offered by New Hampshire’s Advanced Manufacturing Partnerships in Education are benefiting not only scores of community college students, but also employers statewide.
Programs like Great Bay Community College’s CNC Production boot camp can save precision manufacturers money and time.
Programs like Great Bay Community College’s CNC Production boot camp can save precision manufacturers money and time by teaching the exact hard and soft skills they require, using the same equipment they use. Learning takes place away from production floors, allowing staff to focus on meeting product deadlines and exceeding standards. At the same time, boot camps can turn over new qualified candidates in a matter of weeks, building a healthy pipeline of qualified career prospects.
Offered in an accelerated eight-week format, the CNC Production boot camp is instructed by field experts and offered on-site at AMPed NH industry partner SIG Sauer’s state-of-the-art firearms manufacturing facility on Pease International Tradeport.
Collaboration starts at the very beginning. Community colleges work in concert with industry partners to develop and deliver specifically targeted training programs such as the CNC (computer numerically controlled) boot camp, which readies students for high-demand, well-paying CNC machining careers.
But job seekers aren’t the only ones clambering to sign up. Current SIG Sauer employees, with support from their company, are also receiving training in preparation for advancement.
Freedom Chandavong, 23, of Newmarket, a two-year employee at SIG, started in packaging and shipping and is already advancing within the company. He’s in the boot camp to prepare for a career in composite component production. SIG Sauer supports his ambitions by providing tuition reimbursement and time to train.
Just two days into boot camp, Chandavong said, the depth of topics covered was impressive.
“We were already getting into hands-on simulation training,” Chandavong said. Simulators allow students to identify and correct design and production problems in a safe, supportive learning environment before moving on to actual production equipment.
“In today’s precision manufacturing, ‘good enough’ doesn’t count,” said Chandavong, and boot camp has bolstered his confidence and determination. “SIG has made a commitment to me, and I’m going to return that commitment. I’m not going to fail them. For me, this is not a job; this is a career – and with the composites industry growing, there’s a future here.”
The commitment is not unusual, as exhibited by the students who routinely hang back in the lab, celebrating new breakthroughs even as break times begin.
“The application process does a good job to identify those with passion,” said boot camp program developer Sean Hoeing.
Innovative boot-camp-style training programs benefit students and employers.
The thought was echoed by instructor Jeff Bean, an inventor and engineer whose own products are sold nationally and used in the teaching lab.
“It’s impressive,” Bean said. “They come in at different levels. They tend to be hands-on learners, and that’s what we want. That, combined with patience and attention to detail.
“We get to see them at the beginning of their training and then as they progress,” Bean said. “There are so many career paths they can choose.”
Indeed, the boot camp model has been a successful workforce solution for AMPed NH industry partners all over the state, who in years past have reported concerns that the pool of these high-tech employees was drying up.
Many students from AMPed NH’s myriad industry-approved advanced manufacturing certificate and degree programs, have already been hired by partners like SIG Sauer, who view the programs as reliable recruiting grounds for their growing operations.
The boot camp’s location itself speaks to that growth, as well as the demand for a more robust STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) workforce; SIG Sauer expanded to the site after outgrowing operations in Exeter. In addition to its Exeter and Pease sites, the company operates a training center in Epping and is opening another facility in Dover, as well as sites outside America. Combined, dozens of new hires are anticipated in the coming months locally.
Computer-numerical controlled machines are widely used where very precise manufacturing is required. Unlike manually operated equipment of the past, CNC machines shape components automatically by reading computer design code. They are faster and more versatile than ever before.
Under AMPed NH, funded by a $20 million federal TAACCCT grant from DOL’s Employment and Training Administration, NH’s seven community colleges offer dozens of programs in disciplines including robotics & automation; electronics and electromechanics; advanced machine tool, composites and welding technologies; and engineering & programming.
To learn about upcoming CNC Production boot camps, contact Sean Hoeing at firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn about all advanced manufacturing programs offered by AMPed NH, visit www.ampednh.com.
It’s the bane of the serious snowmobiler: The dull edge of a carbide runner.
A Laconia manufacturer came up with a solution to the seasonal problem and in the year since the Biteharder carbide sharpening tool went on the market, Glenn Welch of Welch Manufacturing says business has grown exponentially.
Why? His product is, pardon the pun, cutting edge and his business plan included establishing a Canadian market.
Small business owners from across New Hampshire will have the opportunity to meet one-on-one in two weeks with large government contractors, which, even at a time of budget cutbacks, still need goods and services provided to them.
The 2014 New Hampshire Small Business Matchmaker will run from 8:30 am to 4 pm, March 13, and is hosted by Rivier University in Nashua, with contributing support from BAE Systems, which is also an exhibitor. Over 30 prime contractors are expected, including the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, the US Environmental Protection Agency, the New Hampshire National Guard and the US Army Corps of Engineers.
“For businesses that have products and services the government needs and wants, it is always a good time to pursue a contract,” said David Pease, program manager for the New Hampshire Procurement Technical Assistance Program. “It is a particularly good time now if you have a product or service that can save money, while meeting an established need.”
Government purchasing is a $2 billion market in the state and the NH-PTAP assists about 900 companies, of all sizes, doing business with the government and agencies that are prime contractors for government.
“Matchmakers are very important to us,” said Susan King, the executive administrator of supplier diversity for BAE Systems, Electronic Systems, headquartered in Nashua, which sponsors more than 25 small business events around the country and spends about $400 million buying goods and services from small businesses. “It lets us meet face-to-face with small businesses and to talk with them about what they offer.”
The New Hampshire Small Business Matchmaker is the only one scheduled this year and Pease said it is a rare opportunity for businesses to meet with decision makers in one place, rather than spend time trying to connect with the right person. Government agencies need to purchase the same kinds of goods and services as private businesses do, Pease said. With its own set of goals, statutes and procedures that must be followed, government procurement can be an intimidating process to those who are new to it.
In addition to meeting with the prime contractors, businesses attending can network with others, meet with and get advice from a business mentor and attend information sessions.
Those interested in attending can register online at www.NHSBDC.org. The cost is $50 and includes lunch. For more information, call Heidi Edwards Dunn at the New Hampshire Small Business Development Center at 603-271-0417.
New Hampshire led a national surge in export growth in 2013, according to the International Trade Administration, increasing its merchandise exports by more than 22 percent, to $4.3 billion.
Nationally, the US set an all-time record for the export of goods and services, reaching $2.3 trillion.
“We can attribute our growth to several factors, not the least of which is the savvy and innovative nature of our companies – their products are in demand around the globe,” said Tina Kasim, program manager for the International Trade Resource Center. “The other important factor is the strong partnership we have with the US Department of Commerce here in New Hampshire.”
The two agencies work closely with companies and manufacturers to connect them with trade opportunities.
“These numbers show that New Hampshire exporters continue to take advantage of international growth opportunities to diversify their market portfolios and grow their businesses,” said Justin Oslowski, director of US Commercial Service in Durham.
In the second year of funding of the State Trade Export Promotion program, New Hampshire used its nearly $300,000 award last year to provide matching grants to companies that enabled them to receive services about international markets.
New Hampshire’s merchandise export sales in 2013 outpaced the 2012 figures in many top destinations, including: the Czech Republic (+236 percent); Saudi Arabia (+196 percent); the United Arab Emirates (+161 percent); Colombia (+130 percent) and Canada (+109 percent). Key merchandise export categories include: Computer and electronic products; oil and gas; machinery manufactures; fabricated metal products and electrical equipment.
According to the ITA, the state’s largest market last year was Canada, posting merchandise exports of $1.4 billion, representing 31.7 percent of the state’s total merchandise exports. Following Canada was Mexico ($409 million); China ($266 million); Germany ($212 million) and the Netherlands ($177 million).
In 2012 (the latest figures available), the Manchester-Nashua metropolitan region recorded $1.6 billion in exports.
For more information about export, contact Kasim at the ITRC at 603-271-8444 or www.ExportNH.org or Oslowski at US Commercial Service at 603-953-0212.
Gov. Maggie Hassan this week appointed 26 people to the Economic Development Advisory Council. The membership represents all the cogs in the wheels that drive our economy – business, education, tourism, manufacturing, telecommunications, biotechnology, forest-based products, retail and more.
Established by a 2008 act of the Legislature sponsored by Hassan during her time in the state Senate, the council is charged with assisting the Division of Economic Development by providing advice on the trends and the needs across all sectors of industry and government to aid in the strategic planning efforts of the division.
In announcing the appointment, Hassan said the council will help to continue her efforts to help businesses grow and create good jobs that can support a thriving middle class.
“Through its work to assist and advise New Hampshire’s Division of Economic Development, the Economic Development Advisory Council is critical to our efforts to support innovative economic growth and help businesses create good jobs,” she said. “These appointees have a diverse track record of success in a variety of sectors across our economy, and I am confident that their service will help build a stronger, more innovative New Hampshire.”
The members of the council serve three-year terms and hail from all all corners of the state. The first meeting will be held at 10 am, March 21, here in Concord.
“With these appointments, the Economic Development Advisory Council will have broad representation of industries from every corner of the state,” said Department of Resources and Economic Development Commissioner Jeffery Rose. “This is very important as we seek their counsel in developing our economic strategy and I appreciate their time and commitment to serving on this board.”
The Governor’s appointees are:
Zenagui Brahim, director of the New Hampshire Manufacturing Extension Partnership, representing manufacturing;
Kendall Buck, vice president of the Home Builders and Remodelers Association, representing residential building;
Dean Christon, director of New Hampshire Finance Authority, representing state/local housing authority;
Patrick Clark, president/CEO of BurstPoint Networks, representing information technology/software;
Jaime Coughlin, director of New Ventures and incubator programs, member-at-large;
Eric Crainich, president of Design Standards Corp., representing biotechnology;
Katharine Eneguess, president of White MountainsCommunity College, representing higher education;
Phil Ferneau, founder/director of Borealis Ventures, representing venture capital formation;
Jeffrey Hayes, director of the Lakes Region Planning Commission, member-at-large;
State Senator Jeanie Forrester;
Judy Gove, director of the New Hampshire Electric Coop, representing electric/energy;
Stephen Heavener, director of the Capitol Regional Development Council, representing regional/municipal development;
Gale Hennessy, director of Southern New Hampshire Services, representing workforce development;
Chris Hodgdon, director of government affairs for Comcast, representing telecommunications;
State Representative Naida Kaen;
Carmen Lorentz, director of the New Hampshire Division of Economic Development;
Daniel Lee, associate professor of economics at PlymouthStateUniversity;
Patrick McDermott, director of external affairs for Hinkley Allen & Snyder, member-at-large;
Mark McKenzie, president of New Hampshire AFL-CIO, representing organized labor;
David Mullen, director of Pease Development Authority, representing real estate/commercial real estate development;
Jayne O’Connor, president of White Mountains Attractions, representing travel and tourism;
Eric Proulx, general manager of Tanger Outlet Center, representing retail;
Kathleen Reardon, vice president of Citizens Bank, representing insurance/banking/financial services;
Tim Sink, president of the Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce, representing chambers of commerce;
Sarah Smith, extension professor at the University of New Hampshire, representing forest-based products;
Philip Suter, director of the Regional Center for Advanced Manufacturing at Keene State College.
Asia’s largest air show gets underway this coming week and six New Hampshire companies are on the ground in Singapore, ready to make connections and gain entry into a new global market.
Justin Oslowski and Tina Kasim
Along with them are Tina Kasim, program manager of our International Trade Resource Center, and Justin Oslowski, director of the US Department of Commerce/US Commercial Service in Durham.
“The aerospace and defense industries are a fast growing sector for us,” Kasim said. “The companies attending represent our diversity and innovation and they are eager for the possibilities the Singapore and Asian markets will provide them.”
NH at Singapore
Over the past year, our aerospace and defense sector has been gaining altitude. It is one of our fastest growing industries and since it organized nearly one year ago, the New Hampshire Aerospace and Defense Export Consortium has boosted it even more. Our aero/defense companies are becoming familiar sights internationally; last June, five of our companies were at the International Paris Airshow and in July 2012, three companies took part in the Farnborough International Air Show. Their participation has been made possible through the federal State Trade Export Promotion program.
Singapore is New Hampshire’s 15th largest trading partner and with its range of aerospace design and manufacturing services, is a leading hub for the industry in Asia.
Attending are: AQYR Technologies of Nashua, which designs and manufactures highly portable, simple to operate, satellite communication terminals for military and governments worldwide; Corfin Industries of Salem, which provides component preparation services and is the exclusive provider of the Robotic Hot Solder Dip, which the company developed in the 1980s; LanAir Inc of Newington, which engineers and designs PMA parts; New England Wire Technologies of Lisbon, which designs and manufactures Litz, braids, cables and strands, ultra flexible single, multiconductor, and coaxial cables; RdF Corp., of Hudson, which designs, develops and manufactures surface, insertion and immersion temperature and heat flux sensors and Transupport of Merrimack, a stocking supplier of spares for gas turbine engines, including the T53, T55, AGT1500 AND TF series.
“This builds on the momentum gained from participating in the Farnborough and Paris Air Shows, and further solidifies New Hampshire’s reputation as a large and growing hub for the world’s aerospace and defense sectors,” Oslowski said. “As our first formal foray into Asia, I can’t think of a better market than Singapore. I’m confident our participating companies will show results in the very near future.”
Follow along over the next week during the Singapore Airshow via our Twitter feed and our Facebook page.