Aéro Montréal, which is Quebec’s aerospace cluster, wrapped up its two-day Aerospace Innovation Summit and among the more than 1,000 attendees were our Michael Bergeron and Beno Lamontagne.
“The forum has become essential for aerospace stakeholders in Québec and internationally who want to learn about the latest technological advances, create collaborative projects between countries and generate business opportunities,” said Suzanne M. Benoît, president of Aéro Montréal.
Bergeron said the venue is a great place to connect with companies that may have an interest, or a need, to have a presence in New Hampshire. He said that while many Canadians were drawn to our booth to relate their vacation experiences in the White Mountains or Hampton Beach, they were surprised to learn about the business side of the state – particularly the lack of a sales or personal income tax and our business friendly climate.
It’s been a busy week here at NH Economy, but for New Hampshire, it’s been a great one, with international exposure from the halls of Hannover Messe in Germany, the world’s largest industrial trade fair, to Aéro Montréal, one of the world’s largest aerospace clusters, right over the border.
“We met with 13 European industry clusters (Tuesday), all in different advanced manufacturing areas,” Lorentz said. “We talked about how we might work together to match New Hampshire and European businesses for joint R&D projects.”
Throughout the five-day show, Lorentz and Kasim are scheduled to meet with representatives from more than 30 companies, from places like Germany, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, France and Belgium, which have businesses and manufacturers that complement our key industries. The goal of attending this trade show is to make connections with international companies that may have an interest in investing here; forming partnerships; or expansion or relocation to the US.
One New Hampshire company is also exhibiting at the show. Jewell Instruments, which is located in Manchester, is a world leader in the manufacture and distribution of acceleration and tilt sensors, as well as avionics components, solenoids and panel meters. Its JMA-165 MEMS accelerometer has been nominated for Direct Industry’s i-NOVO Design Award.
Hanover Messe has 17 huge exhibit halls and over the course of the show, more than 200,000 people are projected to pass through there. There is great value in being here to tell the New Hampshire business story to an international audience.
The office will be awfully quiet next week, as our team heads out in two directions, but with the same mission of telling the world about why New Hampshire, with our industries, our business-friendly climate, our skilled and educated workforce, is a great place for companies abroad to consider partnerships, expansion or relocation.
Director Carmen Lorentz and Office of International Commerce Program Manager Tina Kasim head out tomorrow for Hannover Messe 2016, the world’s largest industrial trade fair. More than 200,000 people pass through to visit over 6,500 exhibitors, including New Hampshire. The US is the featured country; President Obama will be there to open the event this weekend. Carmen and Tina have lined up meetings with industry sector and business leaders and we are looking forward to hearing about them throughout the week.
Jewell Instruments of Manchester will also be exhibiting at the show; Brian Ward, director of business development sensor and controls, and Lorentz talked about the event on our monthly New Hampshire Business Matters radio show on WTPL-FM.
On Monday and Tuesday, Michael Bergeron and Beno Lamontagne head over the border to Montreal, where they will attend the Aerospace Innovation Forum. With more than 300 Granite State companies involved in the aerospace and defense industries – which are among our key industries – it makes sense to have a presence and be among companies and leaders of Aero Montreal, one of the largest aerospace clusters in the world.
At the last Aerospace Innovation Forum in 2013, NHADEC signed its first international partnership with Aero Montreal, establishing preferred relations between the organizations collaboration on topics such as training, research, joint trade missions and supplier development initiatives.
We are going to keep up with these two events – and we hope you will, too – via our Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook pages.
For the first time in the trade show’s history, the United States is the featured country; President Obama joins German Chancellor Angela Merkel to open this year’s event. Hannover Messe typically hosts over 200,000 people from more than 70 countries, including global investors, buyers, distributors and government officials.
“Taking part in this premier trade show puts New Hampshire in front of the world and gives us a platform to talk to international companies about the benefits of investing or expanding in the Granite State,” said Jeffrey Rose, commissioner of the Department of Resources and Economic Development. “Direct foreign investment is a key driver of our state’s economy, with dozens of foreign companies located in New Hampshire, who are growing and thriving here.”
Director Carmen Lorentz
Tina Kasim, Office of International Commerce
Carmen Lorentz, director of the Division of Economic Development, and Tina Kasim, of the Office of International Commerce, will attend the trade show.
“We’re looking forward to meeting with global companies and talking to them about the state’s favorable business climate, educated workforce and possible partnerships in our key industry sectors, including aerospace and defense; advanced composites manufacturing and life sciences research and manufacturing,” Lorentz said.
The Division of Economic Development, part of the New Hampshire Department of Resources and Economic Development, is the one-stop resource for business information and assistance for companies within the state and those from outside looking to expand or relocate their business here. For more information, visit nheconomy.com.
The New England Region Matchmaker was held last week in Portland, Maine and more than 40 New Hampshire businesses were represented, taking advantage of a rare opportunity.
Matchmakers are an intense day, when small businesses, who have the kind products and services Uncle Sam needs, can meet with representatives of federal and state agencies who are in charge of procuring them.
We caught up with just a few Granite Staters at the Matchmaker. For some, it was their first time at the event; others are seasoned veterans who value the chance to meet with decision makers, saving them a lot of time and effort in figuring out with whom to connect about their businesses.
The US government is the world’s largest buyer of goods and services and in 2014, New Hampshire manufacturers and service providers met its needs to the tune of $1.7 billion. But landing a government agency is a bit more complicated than regular business to business dealings, in large part because the process has to be fair and and transparent to make sure every one has a fair chance.
The first New Hampshire Aerospace and Defense Conference last year was a sell-out. It marked the first time some of the state’s 300 businesses involved in these fast growing industries had the opportunity to meet one another and see the impressive scale of aero/defense in the state. The 2nd annual conference is set for June 1 at the Radisson Hotel in Manchester and it really will be the must-attend event for companies within New Hampshire, as well as though around the Northeast. Sean Foote, supply chain manager at Transupport Inc., in Merrimack, is a board member on the conference committee and provides an overview of this year’s event.
Sean Foote ~ NH Aerospace and Defense Conference 2016
The consortium was started through a grant in 2013 by the New Hampshire Office of International Commerce. Since then, it has grown to include members from the aerospace and defense industry, as well as service providers that complement these enterprises. Last year, NHADEC became a non-profit organization status and hosted its inaugural New Hampshire Aerospace and Defense conference. Earlier this year, it was recognized by the NH Business Review, earning a Best of Business Editors Award as a ‘state initiative that really took off.’
The biggest benefit of NHADEC is the partnerships it has with the New Hampshire Manufacturing Extension Partnership and the state’s Department of Resources and Economic Development and its Office of International Commerce. OIC, for example, educates NHADEC members on the benefits of export promotion grants and sponsored trade shows to help these companies expand into international markets and drive down the cost incurred if a company were to make this plunge on its own. NHADEC members also have the opportunity to receive training on various aspects of international business, from commercialization and branding to export control and ITAR regulations.
Last year’s NHAD conference was a sell-out. Reserve your space today.
2. Last year’s aero/defense conference was a tremendous success. What’s new for this year’s event?
The NHAD conference committee is excited about a few changes in this year’s event. Through feedback from last year’s conference, we extended it from a half-day event to a day-long networking and collaborative event.
The theme this year is Opportunities for Aerospace and Defense Products, Technologies, and Services in the International Marketplace and we have scheduled a variety of presentations and break out discussions to cover this important topic. For example, we plan on having a presentation covering foreign military sales to bring us up to date on the status on foreign countries procurement. Another highlight will be the break out discussions covering key growth in world markets, such as Colombia, the United Kingdom, Canada and Saudi Arabia.
With the extended hours this year, attendees will have more time to visit the exhibitors. Last year, we had nearly 250 people attend; we had to turn away another 100 people. The venue for this year’s conference is the Radisson Hotel in Manchester and expect to have an even better turn out than last year.
3. Tell us who should plan to attend the conference; is it open to aero/defense companies outside of New Hampshire?
Yes! The NHAD conference committee invites companies outside of the state to attend, which will give the event a more regional appeal. The companies that should be signing up to attend this conference are aerospace and defense enterprises that develop products, technologies and services for the industry. With the theme highlighting opportunities in the international marketplace, companies should sign up if they are looking to take-off into exporting, or looking for local manufacturers to deepen their international supply chain.
Service providers may also consider registering for the conference introduce themselves to a variety of businesses who all have different needs, such as legal advice, business insurance, website or marketing developer.
4. Why is there such a buzz about aero/defense in New Hampshire?
Since the beginning of aviation, New England has always been the hub for aerospace. Many of the major OEMs got their start not too far away, in Connecticut. Since then, companies have been bought out or merged and factory plants have been relocated, but the one constant is the vast number of SMEs that support the aviation industry that have stayed in the region.
In the past few years, New Hampshire has received a lot more buzz because it is one of the leading exporting states in the country for the aerospace and defense industry. People are starting to notice and it’s through the help of the state’s Department of Resources and Economic Development and organizations like NHADEC that the state is earning this recognition.
5. What are the details on deadlines, where to sign up and where to go for more information?
Registration is now open and it’s first come, first served. The deadline to register as an exhibitor is May 18 and May 31 for those who want to attend. For more information about being an exhibitor, or to register, go to the conference website.
Michael Bergeron, senior business development manager
Every day, our business development managers, Michael Bergeron and Cynthia Harrington, speak with site selectors and business owners from around the country searching for the right place to expand or relocate their companies. Their reasons are varied – some may have a deep affinity for the Granite State, while others are drawn to our business friendly climate and educated workforce. Michael talks about the process involved in the expansion/relocation of a company.
1. Business recruitment is an important part of economic development, as it facilitates job creation, encourages growth and diversifies the New Hampshire economy. What’s a typical day like in the life of business development?
We are a sales office for the state, so the priority every day is increasing our pipeline of qualified leads and once we have a strong lead on an interested company, we work with it, confidentially helping the company locate or expand in the state. We market each region of the state differently, based on the region’s strength and assets.
Each part of the sales cycle requires different needs, ranging from cold calls, research, writing proposals comparing New Hampshire with other states, making presentations to decision makers, facilitating meetings with other agencies such as the governor’s office, the Department of Environmental Services and the Department of Transportation; working with the University System of New Hampshire; the NH Business Finance Authority, the NH Community Development Finance Authority; contacting municipal officials; providing real estate tours and working on any issues that the company needs help with in ultimately choosing New Hampshire in which to expand or relocate.
We also work closely with local and regional economic development groups that are important in closing the sale. For example, I recently referred a company from Massachusetts to Jack Donovan of the NH Business Finance Authority, who was able to turn around an industrial bond loan within 40 days—a critical factor in landing the company in Hudson.
2. You’ve been a part of hundreds of business relocations and expansions in your tenure here at the Division of Economic Development. What is is about New Hampshire that draws companies here?
Currently in this market, the number one issue is the availability of skilled employees, followed by cost of occupancy and available office or industrial real estate. If any one one of these factors are missing, the transaction dies. If the company is a family-owned business, the decision is often affected by where its president lives, or wants to live.
And that decision by the owner, and his/her spouse, is predicated on a region with excellent schools, low crime, quality healthcare, cultural options, open space, easy access to major metro areas. Sometimes I have seen decision makers expand to New Hampshire because they have a summer home here.
If it’s a large national company looking for a branch location, then management wants to be close to Boston or Quebec and be confident it can hire managers, and lower the cost of occupancy, compared to the higher rents in the Boston market.
3. Earlier this year, the division unveiled its strategic plan, which identified a number of key industries. How is this helping business development?
The key industries’ clusters in New Hampshire can help attract similar companies that want to be part of the same cluster. For example, we have a growing aerospace cluster and bio/medical device cluster in New Hampshire. When we are on the road at trade shows, we show decision makers where these clusters are located, talk about the educational system that supports these clusters, and how we can help them locate employees and real estate. We understand the kinds of buildings needed for these uses and we can show where to find a good match for employees.
4. NH Economy is back on the road and will attend several trade shows this year. Can you tell us why it’s important to have a presence at them?
It is a myth that attending trade show provides instant leads; rather, it is a higher form of advertising, where we meet people face to face and develop business relationships over time. Finding the right venues and consistently attending is the key obtaining qualified leads. For example, I may meet site consultants at a show, but I may not work with them for another five years, after I develop trust and when an opportunity arises, they think of New Hampshire.
5. You speak with hundreds of companies every year that are considering relocation or expansion. Why is New Hampshire on their list of possibilities?
If they are companies from Massachusetts, Maine, or Vermont, they are looking to retain their current labor force in those states, and also find new employees, by staying within 30 to 50 miles of their current locations. If they are from outside New England, they are looking at New Hampshire because of our lower taxes, skilled work force, easy access to interstate highways and regional and international airports, and business friendly climate.
If it’s a large company, incentives are usually part of the evaluation. In these circumstances, New Hampshire competes with states like South Carolina, Texas, and Florida.