October 2019
A major highlight of the World Trade Center Denver's Annual Member Gathering on September 11, was a live taping of the TradeGeek podcast featuring host Pete Mento and his guest Kyle Pettine, COO of Otterbox. Take a listen as they discuss the challenges of foreign production in the age of globalization and trade wars.
In this issue:

Upcoming Events
newExciting New Additions to the Manufacturer's Edge Team
We are pleased to introduce our new board member, Suzan Damron, and our new Regional Director for Southern Colorado, Michael Ward
Suzan Damron, Vice-President of Accounting, Finance & IT at Birko Corporation and new member of the Manufacturer's Edge  
Board of Directors 
Manufacturer's Edge is pleased to announce the recent addition of Suzan Damron to the Board of Directors.  

Ms. Damron has a wealth of experience in finance, food safety, leadership, and manufacturing. Before relocating to Colorado, Damron spent several years as a business leader in her home state of Illinois. Damron brings a variety of different skills and experiences to the Board and has, over the course of her career, learned to wear many different hats. At one point, she held three roles simultaneously (CFO, COO, and executive management team member) at VIPAR Heavy Duty, Inc.
"My passion lies with helping small- and medium-sized manufacturers, especially family-owned businesses, increase their value," says Damron. "My 20 years of experience combined with the resources that Manufacturer's Edge provides, will allow me to take that passion further." (...) 
Michael Ward,
Regional Director - Southern Colorado
We announced in July that, after nearly 20 years of being the sole primary contact for manufacturers from the south Denver metro area to Durango and from the western border to the eastern plains, we were looking to add an additional resource to assist our Regional Director Cindy Nowak so that she could focus her energy on a more specific section of the southern Denver metro region. After a thorough search process, we are excited to introduce our new Regional Director for Southern Colorado, Michael Ward.  
Michael is a father of four, successful business owner, and resident of Colorado Springs who brings a wide variety of experiences and skills to the team. Michael officially started working at Manufacturer's Edge three weeks ago and has already hit the ground running. He is passionate about manufacturing and entrepreneurship and is eager to assist the Southern Colorado region.  
If you are located in Southern Colorado and would like to know how Michael can help your business grow and thrive, please contact him directly at mward@manufacturersedge.com.
karen U.S.-Japan Trade Agreement:  
A Positive Step Forward After Two Steps Back
By Karen Gerwitz, President, World Trade Center Denver
Karen Gerwitz, President & CEO, World Trade Center Denver
The most recent move by President Trump to initiate a trade deal with Japan comes after two years of confusion in the area. In 2017, President Trump removed the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a trade deal created with 40% of the world's economy. President Obama signed onto the agreement with the intention of building strength among all member countries and perhaps stunting China's growth and control in the region. In an effort to put "America First", President Trump vowed to avoid multilateral trade agreements and altered the country's trade policy primarily to bilateral trade agreements. While the newest trade deal with Japan does not raise all industries to the level of access that was promised under the TPP, the agreement provides increased access for Colorado agricultural producers who wish to export to Japan and includes clarifying policy for digital trade.

Many who followed the drafting of the agreement expected to see the involvement of the automobile industry. While the U.S. does plan on reducing or eliminating tariffs on certain Japanese industrial goods (machine tools, fasteners, steam turbines, bicycles, bicycle parts, and musical instruments), the agreement does not include Japanese automobiles, aircrafts, liquefied propane gas or semiconductor manufacturing equipment from the U.S. Japan, however, will eliminate 10% duty on U.S. ethanol imports over the next 10 years. The change will impact $11 million worth of imports.

The main industries that can expect improved access and lower tariffs are U.S. pork, beef, wine, and barley. The tariff rates for those U.S. products have been lowered to match those of other agriculture producers and TPP countries such as Australia, Canada, and New Zealand. Also discussed in the agreement was a 45% reduction on Japanese markups of U.S. wheat products. Along with lower prices, the U.S. specific quota in Japan will increase to 150,000 metric tons of wheat over the next six years. Industries that have not fared as well are butter, skim milk powder, evaporated milk, and some grains, which have experienced less access to Japanese markets since President Trump pulled the U.S. from the TPP and were not included in the most recent rendition.(...)

Read the full article on our website
isoManufacturer's Edge Partnering with
Cavendish Scott to Offer ISO Trainings
Manufacturer's Edge and our trusted partners at Cavendish Scott, who have been serving our clients' ISO needs for many years, will begin offering a variety of ISO-related training opportunities starting with a week-long IRCA ISO 9001:2015 - Lead Auditor Training in November.

This initial offering is an IRCA (International Register of Certified Auditors) 40-hour course recognized widely by auditor registration organizations including Exemplar Global. The training is administered by the team from Cavendish Scott and is necessary for all registrar auditors and essential to those involved in implementing, maintaining or auditing a quality management system - especially those who are required to interact with ISO 9000:2015 registrars and auditors.

Date: November 18 - 22, 2019
Time: 8:00 am - 5:00 pm
(Breakfast, lunch, and all materials provided)
Location: Doubletree Westminster

The consultants and training professionals at Cavendish Scott are the lead industry experts on all things ISO-related. You don't want to miss this opportunity to learn from the best.

simplycyberSimply Cyber (vol 20): Gearing Up for Cyber Fitness 
Jennifer Kurtz, Cyber Program Director, Manufacturer's Edge 
Four inches of snow fell in Denver last week and, after grumbling about the need to schlepp heavy, potted tropical plans inside to winter, overseeing the snow launched the first anxiety attack about the need to prepare for ski season. Start the 100-lunges-per-day routine, work on core strengthening, checking the condition of gear.
The feeling of anxiety lingers, but I'm not lunging yet. Does that sound about the same for organizational cybersecurity programs? I see a strong connection between gearing up for a safe ski season and gearing up for digital safety (but then, I see cyber connections everywhere).
Company leaders frequently push back against recommendations for cybersecurity initiatives: too costly, can't take people off the production floor to learn about digital safety practices, haven't had a problem yet, the threatened cyber auditors haven't materialized. They sound like my ski buddies who say, "the best way to get fit for skiing is to ski." OK. It's an approach. But is first-hand experience of business-altering consequences from a cyberattack the best way to get fit for cybersecurity? What about starting with a cyber fitness program? What kind of gearing up can small and midsized manufacturers do to get started?(...)
camaThe CAMA Conversation
by Dave Jeffrey, Chair of the Colorado Advanced Manufacturing Association
Dave Jeffrey, CEO & Owner, JPM Prototype & Mfg, Inc. 
As the owner of a small manufacturing company, there is one cost of doing business that I feel I have no control over - rising health insurance costs.
As chair of the statewide Board of Directors for CAMA , I have heard from other manufacturers that I am not the only one who feels this way.
The CAMA Board of Directors cares about you and your business. We want to put you in control of rising health care costs.
CAMA, through our affiliate membership with the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), has launched an Association Health Care Plan specifically designed for small manufacturers . Now you can get the product flexibility and administrative efficiencies previously available only t o larger manufacturers.
What does this mean for Colorado manufacturers like us?
  • A simplified health benefits enrollment experience with access to competitive, flexible plan offerings including health, dental, and vision plans
  • Administrative cost savings
  • Quicker, easy-to-use web-based onboarding and enrollment system
  • Fully ACA-compliant
  • Ease and convenience of ongoing benefits management and administration
There is only one way to find out how this new plan can reduce your operating costs - visit www.cama.namhealthcare.com. Here you can create your company's account and request a quote. 
I have started the process for my company. What are you waiting for?
Walmart has announced that they are committed to supporting American renewal and have pledged to purchase approximately $250 billion in products that support the creation of American jobs by 2023 .  
They are actively compiling a list of interested companies who are ready to grow and add jobs in the U.S. so that sourcing managers can easily search for competitive manufacturers of retail ready goods.
For more information and to add your company to the list, email USAJobs@Walmart.com
events Upcoming Events
Visit our website for a complete calendar of
manufacturing events taking place around Colorado
NOCO Mfg Networking Night: Do Robots Make Better Bartenders?    
Oct 23 @ 5-7pm
New Belgium | Ft Collins
Join us for an evening of connecting and collaborating while enjoying appetizers and have Universal Robots pour some of New Belgium's best brews!  
Find out more
Englewood Manufacturing Day Celebration    
Oct 24 @ 4:30-6:30pm
Leatherneck Precision | Englewood
Joins us as the Aurora-South Metro SBDC, the City of Englewood, Manufacturer's Edge, and Leatherneck Precision Machining come together to host a local celebration honoring our Englewood manufacturing heroes!
Find out more

Manufacturing Roundtable: Grants & Resources in JeffCo
Nov 12 @ 8:30-10:30am
Denver West Business Park | Golden
Are you a manufacturer in Jefferson County? Are you aware of the numerous programs, resources, and even funds that are available to help you with everything from workforce and consulting to layout and lean training?  

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