Thursday, October 25, 2018

Ford Launches Edgy, Midwestern Themed Ad Campaign

I'm in the wrong demographic for about 99% of TV commercials.  One just got my attention.

Ford launched a campaign of talking vs. doing.  That's up my alley.

They take more than a few shots at tech oligarchs and add a strong dose of Midwest edginess to do it.  Wow.  Midwest and edginess don't normally mix.

The images are as good as the message.  There's a coal worker, a steel furnace, a forging shop, and the Ford Rouge plant that started an industrial revolution in there.

Worth a look.  A couple or more times.

Seems like more than just an ad.  It's a great short story and a metaphor for so many things in my World.

Thursday, October 4, 2018

The Pickaway County Manufacturer Story: From Impress Me to Impressive

Our neighbors in Circleville celebrated Manufacturing Week in an impressive way.  See the news at The Dispatch.

Private-label toilet tissue, napkins, and paper towels are now coming out of a new manufacturing plant in Circleville, Ohio, just an hour away.  The plant was a $400 million investment in building and equipment by Sofidel, an Italiian-headquartered company.  This is their first new plant built in the U.S. and their most modern plant on the planet.

It officially opened Wednesday with a day-long, international gala.

I'm celebrating with the Circlevillians and Italians.

I was part of the three-person team that visited Sofidel on April 22, 2015 outside of Porcari in the Tuscany region of Italy.  The visit was part of a Columbus 2020-led trade mission to Europe.  A sit down with the CEO of the family-owned business began with a bold challenge.  He said in very clear English, "Impress me."

We in Licking County didn't have a site for this plant that had some pretty precise needs for size with rail and stream access.  Obviously, Circleville did.

There's so much more to it than that.

Economic development is a little-defined profession.  This deal has lessons for all.

True economic development involves having ready-to-go sites and having capable people.  Communities need people capable of targeted sales/marketing and people capable of seeing projects from A-to-Z to ensure the smoothest landing for projects in a local community.  You gotta close the deal.  Without these, Ohio never impresses and the deal doesn't happen in Circleville.

I'm impressed.  Congratulations, Pickaway County.

Thursday, September 20, 2018

When Headlines Compete

The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports Cleveland outpacing Columbus.  The Columbus Business First reports Columbus outpacing Cleveland.

How can both be true?

Each takes a different angle, but there are two things that I observed in reviewing both articles that are consistent:

Manufacturers deserve credit.  Though Business First fails to mention it, a deeper looks shows that higher than expected growth in manufacturing is why both Cleveland and Columbus areas saw growth.

The 'Burbs deserve credit.  Both cities are actually reporting metropolitan data.  I've done the research before.  Last year, 94% of manufacturing projects reported by Site Selection magazine, and consistently each year at a similar pace, are happening outside of the 3C's.  The 3C's should thank the 'burbs (both suburbs and exurbs) for the pace of growth in their respecting metro areas.

Now, we've settled it.