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Detroit Regional Chamber Economic Development Update, December 2012

Detroit Regional Chamber’s Economic Development Year in Review

In this final 2012 newsletter, I am pleased to be able to look back on a list of economic development accomplishments this year of which we are all intensely proud. Our Detroit Regional Chamber team:

  • Launched MICHauto, the first program to focus exclusively on promoting, retaining and growing Michigan’s automotive assets;
  • Launched the Detroit Regional Prosperity Campaign to affirm the Chamber’s principles of regional collaboration and economic development through a multi-year fundraising campaign; as you read last month, the Campaign is more than halfway to its $2 million annual goal;
  • Participated in both of Governor Rick Snyder’s trade and investment missions (Europe and China);
  • And entered into strategic partnerships with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation for each of the Chamber’s economic development programs.

The Chamber economic development team will waste no time in the new year, launching MICHauto’s Michigan Is Auto report on January 10, a first-of-its-kind publication that details the depth, economic role and growth potential of Michigan’s automotive assets. Following a full slate of activities at the North American International Auto Show, the Chamber will begin convening key stakeholders and investors to engage on its economic development committees to seek guidance and advice for each of the programs.

A calendar of committee meetings is scheduled to be released during the week of January 7, 2013. As always, input and support are welcome and the Chamber wishes you a holiday filled with joy and meaning.

Benjamin Erulkar
Senior Vice President, Economic Development
Detroit Regional Chamber

MICHauto to Hold Annual Meeting and Reception for Automotive Suppliers

On Thursday, January 10, MICHauto is hosting the East Meets West: An Automotive Supplier Forum, a small, private roundtable for Michigan’s automotive executives. Attendees will participate in a discussion focused on how Michigan can be a more competitive location for the automotive industry, informing future conversations with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and the Governor’s office. Immediately following this event, the 2nd Annual MICHauto Meeting and Reception will take place, where the Michigan is Auto report will be released. The report is a substantive analysis of the automotive assets and resources that continue to make Michigan the preferred location for automotive investment. Attendees will also hear a brief recap of MICHauto’s first year in operation and be treated to a panel discussion and a special keynote address regarding the contents of the report.

Earlier this month, MICHauto participated in the Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association’s (MEMA) Government Affairs Committee quarterly meeting. Brad Williams, the Detroit Regional Chamber’s vice president of government relations, familiarized the committee with the Chamber’s presence in Lansing, recent legislative victories and summarized pending state legislation with automotive implications. MICHauto looks forward to building a partnership with MEMA to increase the automotive industry’s unified presence in Lansing. For more information on MICHauto, please contact Rob Luce.

Chamber’s Business Attraction Team Continues to Advance Regional Economy

The Detroit Regional Chamber’s Business Attraction team has been pleased with the recent activity in attracting new prospects as a result of the increased positive marketing of the region and overall improvement in the economy. The Chamber works diligently to provide the best possible response to inquiries within 24 hours – better than industry standards.

Each of the requests have different factors, these include information such as utility rates and wage information. Recent manufacturing prospects have been international in nature – Canada, Germany and China representing the largest portion of inquiries in the past months. Since August of 2012, Business Attraction had responded to more than 50 leads for the region.

The Business Attraction team is also partnering with local partners to close deals, including a large port project in Wayne County; a Canadian automotive supplier considering Macomb County; the location of an Italian engineering firm; and the continued work with several Italian automotive suppliers in Oakland County. 2013 is projected to be a year of significant growth in the region, and assets like the skilled workforce, lower state tax structure and supply chain will attract and secure more deals. For more information on the Chamber’s business attraction efforts, please contact Maureen Krauss.

Connection Point Hosts Successful Winter Supplier Summit with Consumers Energy

On December 12, Connection Point hosted the Consumers Energy Winter Supplier Summit at the Kellogg Center in East Lansing in partnership with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s (MEDC) Pure Michigan Business Connect program and Consumers Energy. This all-day forum attracted 95 attendees representing 44 companies to explore current and future business opportunities between Consumers Energy and Michigan suppliers. The event began with a morning keynote address from Dan Malone, senior vice president, distribution and customer operation, Consumers Energy; and Mike Finney, president and CEO, MEDC; who highlighted Consumer’s commitment to buy from Michigan suppliers. The event also featured a panel discussion and also highlighted the Connection Point exercise culminating with the identification of an additional 54 needs for suppliers to discuss throughout the Summit.

As a show of its commitment to Michigan-based suppliers, Consumers Energy had 30 employees from a range of departments attend the Summit to ensure all suppliers attending had access to discuss current and future procurement opportunities. This event had the highest turnout from a buying organization at a Connection Point event thus far. Connection Point is continuing the dialogue with new buying entities both in-state and nationally in 2013 and is working to uncover new opportunities in the automotive, energy and technology sectors, among others. For more information on Connection Point, please contact Ryan Michael.

Translinked Participates in Committee to Develop and Launch Regional Supply Chain Sector

Since last March, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, the Michigan Department of Transportation and the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development have convened a statewide committee to develop and launch a strategy for the regional supply chain sector (encompassing Michigan, Southwest Ontario and Northwest Ohio). Along with groups such as Business Leaders for Michigan and the Center for Automotive Research, Translinked has participated fully in the committee, which is now nearing completion of its strategy development work. The Logistics and Supply Chain Strategy is expected to be finalized in the next few weeks.

In early 2013, Translinked will a) participate in the launch of the statewide strategy, b) continue to work with the state and other stakeholders to begin to focus on implementing the action strategies, c) provide economic development and other stakeholders an online supply chain promotional toolkit, accessible through the Chamber’s website, and d) convene key supply chain actors to develop the logistics platform of the Chamber’s business attraction strategy. For more information, please contact Benjamin Erulkar.

Dale Carnegie Training Franchise Helps Detroit Students Succeed Through Development Program

The Dale Carnegie Training of Southeastern Michigan and the Detroit Regional Chamber Education Engagement Project are making a point to help students locally through their newest venture, the Dale Carnegie Barfield Entrepreneurial & Leadership Development Program. Thirty high school students at the Detroit Edison Public School Academy are participating in this year-long pilot program, which is the same foundational course taken by business executives all over the world. Once the pilot program is completed, program partners and contributors Mark Will and Brandon Marsh hope to expand to other schools.

This pilot Dale Carnegie training program is just one of 36 business education partnerships operating in Detroit schools as a result of the Education Engagement Project led by Brooke Franklin. For more information about this project or how to get engaged in K-12 education in Detroit, please contact Brooke at 313.596.0365.