Federal, state and local officials say opening of Export-Import Bank office in Detroit will lead to more jobs

From MLive.com

January 28, 2013

By David Muller

DETROIT, MI – The opening of a federal Export-Import finance center will help create jobs in Detroit and in the state, federal, state and local officials said Monday at the Detroit Regional Chamber headquarters in Downtown Detroit.

“Our goal is to make things and grow things in Michigan, and then create jobs through exports,” U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow said. “For every $1 billion dollars in goods or services exported, we create 7,000 jobs. So we want to export our products, not our jobs, and the way to do that is expanding our support, particularly for small businesses.”

The financing center, an office of the Export-Import Bank of the United States, will be based in the U.S Export Assistance Center. One of its key roles will be providing export insurance to companies wary of not getting paid for shipping their products abroad. It also fills private financing gaps and offers counseling on exporting.

Gov. Rick Snyder told local business leaders at Monday’s announcement that he knows first hand the hesitation of selling items abroad.

“I can tell you it’s exciting, it’s great to say you’re selling to a new country, but it can be hard,” Snyder said. “It can be very difficult in terms of figuring out how to get paid, simple things like that.”

Snyder stressed however that all services should be “streamlined” for local businesses, and noted that agencies such as Automation Alley, the Michigan Economic Development Center and the Detroit Regional Chamber can also aid business looking to sell outside of the country.

He said it is important to keep things simple. “Let’s just think about it – we make stuff and we need somebody to sell to,” Snyder said.

Export-Import Bank Chairman and President Fred Hochberg said that the federal agency authorized more than $500 million to Michigan businesses in 2012.

“In Michigan, about 30 percent of the work we do here is small business,” Hochberg said. “Nationwide it’s around 20 percent, so this is not only a state of large businesses – Dow, Ford and many other companies that are exporting – but also small businesses at significant levels. And if we have more states like the state of Michigan, we will not only double exports in five years, we’ll exceed that.”

One of the stated goals of the Obama administration is to double exports from 2009 levels by the end of 2014. Michigan plays a fairly large role in that effort as one of the top ten manufacturers and exporters in the country.

Detroit as a region is fourth in the country in terms of exports, according to Stabenow, who was appointed to the President’s Export Council by both President Bush and President Obama

Eighty-eight percent of the businesses the Export-Import Bank works with are small businesses, Hochberg said.

Detroit Regional Chamber CEO: 3 Southeast Michigan sectors poised for export growth

From MLive.com

January 28, 2013

By David Muller

DETROIT, MI – What three sectors are most poised for export aid in the Detroit area?

They are the ones you would suspect, Detroit Regional Chamber President and CEO Sandy Baruah said Monday, as a new office of the Export-Import Bank of the United States was announced for Detroit.

Gov. Rick Snyder, U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow, Congressmen John Dingell and Gayr Peters, and the Export-Import Chairman and President Fred Hochberg told local business leaders and others that the new office will help boost exports by regional companies and subsequently add jobs to the struggling local economy. The Export-Import Bank offers counseling to businesses looking to export, but also provides financial tools such as insurance on goods sold to foreign countries.

Here are three Southeast Michigan sectors that Baruah said are ready to expand what they sell abroad:

  • “They are really the exact same sectors that Southeast Michigan is known for, so one is advanced manufacturing. Advanced manufacturing is huge. And we’re really talking about advanced manufacturing for the customized, high-value-added composite  material parts that we do so well here. That was borne out of the auto industry but is now expanding into aerospace and medical devices.
  • Number two – medical devices. Michigan is really growing in medical devices and medical technology – it’s very strong.
  • And thirdly, is (Information Technology), IT services. We’re seeing kind of an outsource-to-Detroit trend where companies are moving here to Detroit, really here in the downtown corridor – to set up their IT shops.  They are providing services not just to Michigan-based companies or Greats Lakes-based companies, theyr’e providing services to the rest of the world.”

The latest Michigan export figures form the U.S. Census Bureau, which has numbers through 2011, show that automotive-related materials dominated the state’s wares sold abroad. In terms of dollar value, Canada is easily the number destination for Michigan goods, buying 46.2 percent of the state’s exports, followed by Mexico at 17.6 percent and China at 5.3 percent.

But small business still make up about 30 percent of all exports in Michigan, Export-Import Bank chairman Hochberg said Monday. Hochberg also said that 88 percent of the businesses the Export-Import Bank works with are small businesses, Hochberg said. The bank authorized more than $500 million to Michigan businesses in 2012.

Stabenow said that for every $1 billion in exports, some 7,000 jobs are created. Detroit as a region is fourth in the country in terms of exports, according to Stabenow, who was appointed to the President’s Export Council by both President Bush and President Obama.

ArtServe Michigan’s New Creative State Michigan Report Reveals Increased Contributions to Michigan Economy

WIXOM, Mich. (January 28, 2013) – One year following the launch of its nationally recognized report in 2012, ArtServe Michigan – the state’s leading statewide arts and cultural advocacy organization – today released its Creative State Michigan report focused on Fiscal Year 2010. The report details economic and social data from 346 nonprofit arts and cultural organizations, representing an estimated 17 percent of the more than 2,000 cultural groups operating statewide. The data reveals that these organizations contributed more than one-half billion dollars in expenditures alone to the Michigan economy in 2010. Learn more at www.CreativeStateMI.org.

Among its most compelling data, the report affirms the creative economy as a significant growth sector and strategic opportunity for Michigan’s economy. From 2006 to 2011, the number of arts-related jobs increased by 15 percent to 85,656 jobs in Michigan, while arts-related businesses increased by 65 percent to 28,072. From 2010-2011 alone, jobs increased by 11 percent, while businesses increased by 16 percent. Moreover, of the $553.4 million in annual expenditures by the nonprofit creative community in 2010, nearly $194 million supported salaries for 22,335 jobs.

Nationally, arts and cultural organizations spent $61.1 billion in 2010 and leveraged an additional $74.1 billion in event-related spending by arts audiences, according to Americans for the Arts. This combined $135.2 billion in economic activity supported 4.1 million jobs and generated $22.3 billion in total government revenue.

Michigan’s arts and cultural destinations continue to demonstrate their essential value to the state’s tourism industry, generating more than $2 billion in state tourism revenues in fiscal year 2011. That represents 16 percent of the state’s total tourism revenues in that year – more than golf, boating and sailing, hunting and fishing, and hiking and biking combined.

“Every day, Michigan’s arts and cultural organizations and creative industries are making major contributions to our state’s economy – creating jobs, spending in local communities, generating tourism revenues and shaping vibrant cities and towns that attract talent and business investment,” said Jennifer Goulet, president and CEO of ArtServe. “This year’s Creative State Michigan report reinforces the critical role of Michigan’s creative economy in defining new opportunities to position the sector as a strategic economic tool and resource for our state.”

The report also provides indicators for the resources the arts provide for Michigan’s schools and children, as well as residents of all ages. In 2010, more than 2.7 million students benefitted from educational programs and events offered by arts and cultural venues statewide. These same organizations hosted 26,515 youth and school group visits and facilitated 1,135 programs in schools providing valuable educational experiences at a time when many schools have cut funding for arts programs. Michigan’s cultural groups are reaching growing audiences, reporting more than 15.7 million visits in 2010, 54 percent of which were free of charge.

Data sources for the Creative State Michigan report include the Michigan Cultural Data Project (Michigan CDP), Americans for the Arts’ annual Creative Industries Reports, and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation/Pure Michigan. The Michigan CDP data includes FY 2010 data profiles from 346 nonprofit arts and cultural organizations. There are nearly 800 organizations registered in the Michigan CDP today, positioning future reports to demonstrate increasing impacts over time.

Launched May 2010, the Michigan CDP is a powerful online management tool with a robust support network designed to strengthen arts and cultural organizations. It also provides funders with reliable, comparable data to inform grantmaking and helps advocates and researchers better understand and communicate the sector’s impact. A growing national model owned and operated by The Pew Charitable Trusts, the CDP is operating in 12 states and the District of Columbia, with 253 grant programs and close to 14,000 organizations participating across the US.

Twenty Michigan foundations and funders have collaborated to bring the CDP to Michigan and support Creative State Michigan committing to the initiative as an important investment in the growth and sustainability of Michigan’s arts and cultural resources. Melonie Colaianne, president of the MASCO Corporation Foundation, said, “This year’s Creative State Michigan report once again makes a clear and compelling case for the far-reaching contributions of the arts in Michigan – using data from the growing set of cultural organizations participating in the CDP to emphasize the significant ways that arts and culture strengthen the economy and serve our communities. We are looking forward to working with ArtServe to share its findings widely.”

This year Data Driven Detroit once again provided research support for ArtServe Michigan, as an independent examiner of the information. “This effort provides a critical reminder of the importance of the nonprofit sector in Michigan’s economy, supporting previous research from the Michigan Nonprofit Association,” said Director of Data Driven Detroit Kurt Metzger. “By drilling down within the arts and culture sector, the Michigan CDP brings forward a rich new source of detailed data with solid collection methods to deliver a more complete picture of the region’s economic and social activity. We look forward to the continued expansion of CDP contributing organizations, which will serve to broaden and deepen our research in the years to come.”

The Michigan Cultural Data Project is made possible through the leadership and generous support of:
ArtServe Michigan
Barry Community Foundation
Battle Creek Community Foundation
Capital Area Community Foundation
Charles Stewart Mott Foundation
Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan
Council of Michigan Foundations
Erb Family Foundation
Frey Foundation
Grand Rapids Community Foundation
Great Lakes Bay Regional Convention and Visitors Bureau
Hudson-Webber Foundation
Irving S. Gilmore Foundation
The Kresge Foundation
MASCO Corporation Foundation
Michigan Council for the Arts and Cultural Affairs
Michigan Humanities Council
National Endowment for the Arts
Petoskey – Harbor Springs Area Community Foundation
Rotary Charities of Traverse City
Ruth Mott Foundation
The Skillman Foundation
Southfield Community Foundation

ArtServe Michigan is a statewide nonprofit advocacy organization dedicated to cultivating the creative potential of Michigan’s arts and cultural sector and creative industries to enhance the public health and well-being of Michigan, its people and communities. ArtServe advocates for arts, culture, arts education and the power of the creative economy in Michigan; provides leadership and professional development for artists, creative practitioners, and arts and cultural organizations; and connects arts and cultural leaders and supporters through strategic communications. Contact ArtServe Michigan at 248-912-0760 or visit ArtServeMichigan.org.

Tanner Friedman hires Lexi Cerilli

Tanner Friedman Strategic Communications has hired Lexi Cerilli as assistant account coordinator.

In this role, Cerilli will support the Tanner Friedman team and firm clients in all areas of traditional and social media initiatives, utilizing a wide range of marketing and communications platforms.

Prior to joining the agency, Cerilli interned at Mid-Michigan Big Brothers Big Sisters where she assisted and coordinated events, developed promotional materials and managed social media accounts.

A previous Tanner Friedman intern, Cerilli graduated Cum Laude from Central Michigan University where she earned a bachelor’s degree in integrative public relations and a minor in marketing.
Tanner Friedman is a strategic communications firm specializing in traditional and emerging media relations, adversity management and public relations counsel. Tanner Friedman is located in the landmark Tri-Atria Building at 32255 Northwestern Highway, Suite 298, in Farmington Hills, Michigan. For more information, please visit tannerfriedman.com.

Hennessey Capital Adds Equipment Financing to its Suite of Products

Rochester, Mich., Jan. 24, 2013 – Hennessey Capital, a division of Hitachi Capital America Corp., today announced that it is offering equipment financing to complement its traditional revolving lines of credit.

“Our new partnership with Hitachi Capital America Corp. has not only given us the ability to provide larger loans at more competitive rates, but it has opened the door for us to add equipment to the list of assets we lend on. By offering equipment financing, our asset-based lending clients now have access to yet another avenue of funding that will allow them to positively improve their cash flow,” said Mike Semanco, president and COO of the Hennessey Capital division.

For more information, visit hennesseycap.com or call (248) 658-1100.

About Hennessey Capital
Hennessey Capital provides revolving lines of credit secured by A/R, inventory, and equipment along with factoring of accounts receivable for small- and middle-market companies across the United States. Facilities range from initial invoicing to $5 million and beyond and are used as primary loan facilities, for restructuring current debt, and funding seasonal or incremental sales growth.

About Hitachi Capital America Corp.
Hitachi Capital America Corp. is an independent, diversified leasing and financial services company providing financing to Hitachi group companies and the commercial business sector in the United States and Canada. We offer a variety of asset-based financing solutions with our business focus on truck finance, vendor finance, trade finance, medical equipment finance, lease discounting and software financing.

AIAG Re-elects Chairman and Vice-Chairman to Its Board of Directors

SOUTHFIELD, Mich., Jan. 22, 2013 — AIAG has re-elected the chairman and vice chairman of its board of directors, the not-for-profit, member-supported organization announced today. Chairman John Batchik, vice president of quality at Freudenberg-NOK, and vice-chairman David Kneisler, vice president, global quality at Dana Holding Corp., will each serve another two-year term, which expires Jan. 1, 2015.

“As AIAG concentrates its efforts on accelerating the development of the automotive supply chain’s sub-tier, especially in the area of quality, we rely heavily on the vision, experience and direction that these supplier quality leaders provide,” said J. Scot Sharland, executive director of AIAG.

“Both John and David have been indispensable to AIAG in support of our ongoing commitment to foster a seamless, efficient and responsible supply chain.”

At Freudenberg-NOK, Batchik leads quality system development and strategy execution for the group’s automotive, general industry, and other product groups throughout the Americas. He has a master’s degree in manufacturing management from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y., and received a bachelor’s degree in industrial and operations engineering from the University of Michigan.

Kneisler is responsible for Dana Holding Corp.’s customer and internal operational quality for its four global product groups. He also leads the company’s product safety, technical problem solving, quality systems and warranty management activities. He holds an MBA from the University of Michigan – Flint and has a bachelor’s degree from Michigan Technological University.
About AIAG

AIAG is a unique not-for-profit organization where, for more than 30 years, OEMs, suppliers, service providers, government entities and individuals in academia have worked collaboratively to drive down costs and complexity from the supply chain via global standards development and harmonized business practices. AIAG membership has grown to more than 960 members include renowned OEMs, such as Caterpillar, Chrysler Group, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Navistar, Nissan, Toyota, and many of their parts suppliers and service providers. For more information, visit www.AIAG.org.

# # #

AIAG Contact: Dave Lalain
Ph. 248.358.9741

The Quell Group Contact: Rick Bourgoise
Ph. 248.649.8900

Tenth-Annual McGraw Wentworth Survey to Benchmark Michigan Benefits Trends, Employers’ Plans for Health Care Reform

Troy, Michigan, January 21, 2013 – In 2014, key elements of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) take effect, including employer “play or pay” mandates, mandatory coverage requirements for individuals, and health exchanges. Michigan organizations and human resources professionals are focusing on managing health care benefits costs while also adapting to and complying with the law. McGraw Wentworth, a Marsh & McLennan Agency LLC company, has launched its tenth-annual Southeast Michigan Mid-Market Group Benefits Survey to provide employers with benchmarking and trend data to use in developing their 2014 benefits plan strategies, including how to best navigate Affordable Care Act requirements. Results and analysis will be released in May.

More than 550 southeast Michigan organizations are expected to participate in the free survey. The 2013 Mid-Market Survey includes new data points to address the changes in employer-sponsored health care. The resulting analysis will:

  • Highlight whether Michigan organizations plan to continue offering group health coverage under health reform.
  • Benchmark how organizations intend to address the 30-hour work week, affordability test, auto enrollment rules and availability of health exchange.
  • Examine the use of cost control strategies such as defined contribution plans, consumer driven health plans (CDHPs), cost-shifting, and spousal surcharges.
  • Track organizations’ wellness initiatives, their use of incentives, and outcomes measurement.
  • Review PPO, HMO and CDHP plan costs and co-pays for southeast Michigan employers.
  • Identify the region’s TrendBendersTM, high-performing organizations that have kept average cost increases at less than 3% over the past two years.

”Health Care Reform is prompting all employers to examine their business models, to delve deeper into their workforce and benefits management strategies,” said Rebecca McLaughlan, Managing Director, McGraw Wentworth. “This survey is an important tool that helps midsize organizations understand health care cost trend and provides them with an objective overview of how their industry and regional peers intend to adapt to ACA.”

Mid-sized employers with 100-10,000 employees in southeast Michigan — including manufacturing, technology, service, government, education and not-for-profit organizations — benefit from the extensive survey analysis. Participants are invited to attend an informative survey results seminar at which they will receive a tailored report benchmarking their organization against industry peers and the entire dataset. All data will be confidential. Interested organizations should call Ryan Bowers at (248) 822- 6231 or visit mcgrawwentworth.com

McGraw Wentworth, a Marsh & McLennan Agency LLC company, is an award-winning group benefits consulting and brokerage firm based in Troy, Michigan. The company counsels clients on how to structure their group benefit programs and provides strategic planning, utilization review, benefit design, employee communications, compliance assistance and related services. The firm is supported by Marsh & McLennan, the premier global provider of advice and solutions in risk, strategy and human capital.

Hennessey Capital to Support The Salvation Army Bed & Bread Program at Annual Red Wings Alumni Hockey Game

Rochester, Mich., Jan. 18, 2013 – Hennessey Capital, a division of Hitachi Capital America Corp., announced today their support of The Salvation Army’s Annual Red Wings alumni hockey game benefitting the Bed & Bread Program.

On Saturday, January 26, members of the Detroit Red Wings Alumni Association will face off against the Oakland Jr. Grizzlies and Troy Sting, as well as the Troy Youth Hockey Association, at 7 p.m. at the Troy Sports Center located at 1819 E. Beaver Rd. in Troy.

The voice of the Detroit Red Wings, Karen Newman, will kick-off the festivities with a performance of the national anthem and Ken Rogulski of News/Talk 760 WJR will emcee the event. Following a brief program, legends of the Detroit Red Wings including Ted Lindsay, Dino Ciccarelli, Joey Kocur, Ed Mio and Dennis Hextall will take to the ice.

“The Bed & Bread Program continues to assist thousands of less fortunate across Metro Detroit,” said Mike Semanco, president and COO of the Hennessey Capital division. “This is Hennessey Capital’s seventh year supporting this great and worthwhile cause and we are honored to do so because The Salvation Army and its Bed & Bread Program is responsible for doing so much good for so many.”

Tickets are available for $12 per person by contacting Amy Howard at (248) 767-6151.

As a prelude to the Detroit Red Wings alumni game, a ‘Skate-a-thon’ fundraiser will take place from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 25 at the Troy Sports Center. Oakland Jr. Grizzlies coaches and team members are raising pledge dollars for the cause. The cost to participate is a $15 donation.

All proceeds from these events will be presented at the 26th annual Salvation Army Bed & Bread Club Radiothon, airing live on News/Talk 760 WJR from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 22.

The Radiothon is the nonprofit’s largest fundraiser for the Bed & Bread Program.

About Hennessey Capital
Hennessey Capital provides revolving lines of credit secured by A/R, inventory, and equipment along with factoring of accounts receivable for small- and middle-market companies across the United States. Facilities range from initial invoicing to $5 million and beyond and are used as primary loan facilities, for restructuring current debt, and funding seasonal or incremental sales growth.

Learn more at www.hennesseycap.com or by calling (248) 658-1100.

About The Salvation Army Bed & Bread Program
The Salvation Army of Metro Detroit’s Bed & Bread Program serves more than 5,000 meals each day to men, women and children who would otherwise go without. That’s more than 1.8 million meals every year. In addition, The Bed & Bread Program provides shelter to more than 400 homeless individuals each night, nearly 160,000 nights of shelter annually.

The Salvation Army of Metro Detroit’s Bed & Bread Program is unique in that it serves many people via mobile soup kitchens. The Bed & Bread trucks are on the streets of Detroit 365 days a year making designated stops throughout the day.

Case managers traveling with the Bed & Bread program’s mobile feeding trucks also assist clients in receiving critical social services from The Salvation Army.

Join the Bed & Bread Club by making a tax-deductible donation by calling (248) 528-0760 or visiting www.salmich.org.

Plante Moran Named to FORTUNE magazine’s List of “The 100 Best Companies to Work For” for 15th Consecutive Year

Technology, Social Media and Key Changes Keep Firm Current with Changing Workplace Landscape

SOUTHFIELD, Michigan – Plante Moran PLLC, one of the nation’s largest certified public accounting and business advisory firms, has been named for the 15th consecutive year to FORTUNE magazine’s list of the “The 100 Best Companies to Work For”. The firm has been named to this prestigious list each year it has applied. Winners were announced today on FORTUNE’S iPad app and Plante Moran ranks #25, the highest-ranking accounting firm on the list. The full list of winners can be viewed tomorrow at Fortune.com/BestCompanies and will be featured in the Feb. 4 issue of FORTUNE.

“Plante Moran has maintained – and expanded — the dynamic culture and staff retention practices that enable us to be recognized as one of the best places to work, even during a 15-year growth period,” said Plante Moran Managing Partner Gordon Krater, CPA. “Since 1999 when Plante Moran first appeared on the FORTUNE list, the number of staff has increased from 978 to more than 2,000. That’s a testament to the strong culture that has endured through our nearly 90-year history.”

The workplace has changed significantly in 15 years and the firm has kept pace with those changes, in part by being a leader in technology and the prompt application of relevant workplace trends. For example, Plante Moran uses social media tools to attract the best and the brightest entry-level talent from campuses throughout the Midwest. The firm also has a Diversity Council, an initiative to promote women leaders, and several affinity groups including a GLBT resource group.

Additionally, the firm champions community outreach and involvement at all levels of the organization through the staff-led and driven Plante Moran Cares, the firm’s grass-roots charity project. Plante Moran Cares connects staff with volunteer opportunities that increase the well-being of individuals in their local communities. By encouraging personal participation and interaction, Plante Moran Cares aims to share the firm’s longstanding “We Care” philosophy which states, “We care about our clients, we care about our work, we care about our families and our communities, and we care about each other.” This year’s Plante Moran Cares project is literacy and involves 16 literacy organizations in Michigan, Illinois, and Ohio receiving hands-on volunteer and financial support from Plante Moran and its staff members.

“With the Plante Moran Cares initiative, we provide a meaningful way for staff to deepen their sense of being part of a larger community through contributions of time and talent. Equally important, we see this as an opportunity to shape a lifelong commitment to volunteerism and giving back,” Krater said.

About Plante Moran
Plante Moran is among the nation’s largest certified public accounting and business advisory firms, providing clients with tax, audit, risk management, financial, technology, business consulting and wealth management services. Plante Moran has a staff of more than 2,000 professionals in 21 offices throughout Michigan, Ohio and Illinois, with international offices in Shanghai, China; Monterrey, Mexico; and Mumbai, India.
Plante Moran has local offices in the following cities:

FORTUNE Methodology
To pick The 100 Best Companies to Work For, Fortune partners with the Great Place to Work Institute to conduct the most extensive employee survey in corporate America: 259 firms participated in this year’s survey. More than 277,000 employees at those companies responded to a survey created by the institute, a global research and consulting firm operating in 45 countries around the world. Two-thirds of a company’s score is based on the results of the institute’s Trust Index survey, which is sent to a random sample of employees from each company. The survey asks questions related to their attitudes about management’s credibility, job satisfaction, and camaraderie. The other third is based on responses to the institute’s Culture Audit, which includes detailed questions about pay and benefit programs and a series of open-ended questions about hiring practices, methods of internal communication, training, recognition programs, and diversity efforts. Any company that is at least five years old and has more than 1,000 U.S. employees is eligible.

# # #

Sandy Baruah on The Frank Beckmann Show

Chamber President and CEO Sandy Baruah talked with WJR’s Frank Beckmann at the 2013 North American International Auto Show about MICHauto, the auto industry, and Belle Isle.