Thomas’ Tony Uphoff Advocates for Industry at White House Roundtable

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NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–lt;a href="" target="_blank"gt;#B2Blt;/agt;–Acting upon an invitation to share knowledge and insights on the issues
facing the U.S. manufacturing industry, Thomas President and CEO Tony
Uphoff recently visited the White House to lead a manufacturing
roundtable with government officials and business leaders. Thomas, the
leading provider of product sourcing, supplier selection and marketing
solutions for industry, has served and advocated for the industrial
sector since 1898.

Held on Thursday, March 14, the roundtable was organized by the White
House Office of Public Liaison, Department of Commerce International
Trade Administration (ITA) and the Small Business Administration (SBA).
In kicking off the discussion, Uphoff outlined the current sustained
growth of the U.S. manufacturing industry, measured in terms of output
and job growth, noting employment levels in the sector are on par with
those in 1949, during the height the post-WWII industrial boom.

Uphoff also touched on four key challenges facing the industry: the
public’s misperception of U.S. manufacturing; the digital transformation
of industrial sales, marketing and supply chain management;
international trade trends and the dynamics presented by today’s
multi-generational workforce and its growing skills gap.

“This was a great opportunity to share what our data shows on
manufacturing and industrial trends with senior government leaders and
to illuminate some of the key challenges our industry is working to
overcome,” explained Uphoff. “These types of discussions go a long way
toward shaping America’s perception of manufacturing. They provide real
examples and identify what is being done by leading U.S. manufacturers
to continue the growth in this sector.”

Uphoff was joined by four Thomas customers: Karen Norheim, Executive
Vice President of American Crane & Equipment Corporation; Ken Carlton,
President of Corrugated Metals; Sean Duclos, President of Millennium
Precision LLC; and Eoin Lynch, Executive Director, Sales and Marketing,
Tex Tech Industries; as well as industry leaders: Jeff White, Partner at
the law firm Robinson & Cole LLP and Brett Silvers, President and CEO of
WorldBusiness Capital, Inc.

Government officials in attendance included representatives from the
Congressional offices of Congressman Tom Reed (R-NY), Co-Chair of the
House Manufacturing Caucus, Congressman Lee Zeldin (R-NY), SBA Regional
Administrators Wendell Davis and Steven Bulger, U.S. Department of
Commerce ITA Deputy Assistant Secretary for Manufacturing Ian Steff, and
U.S. Department of Commerce International Trade Administration Director
Anne Evans.

Regarding the ongoing digital transformation of the industry, Uphoff
said, “While many U.S. manufacturers have adopted new technologies on
their factory floors, many haven’t yet adopted the new digital
technologies in their sales, marketing and supply chain management that
will allow them to remain competitive in the domestic and global
marketplace. This roundtable spurred great discussion between the
government and industry leaders on what can be done to support
businesses that need guidance in making that shift.”

As an early adopter of new technologies throughout the company, American
Crane & Equipment Corporation has created a competitive edge. “Our
digital transformation has allowed us to grow while at the same time
providing ways to modernize our internal culture and create an
environment for the multi-generational workplace,” explained Norheim.

Working internationally has helped Corrugated Metals grow. “The key to
doing business overseas is building relationships. Through these
alliances you build increased sales. More businesses should investigate
this global opportunity,” said Carlton.

“At ITA we are always seeking resources that can help us better support
American manufacturing,” said Evans. “After attending one of Thomas’
Together for Industry
events, it was clear that their ongoing
data and work with thousands of manufacturers is unique and they could
add tremendous value to our manufacturing outreach nationwide. With them
we have been able to share a number of our programs that support USA
manufacturing companies to grow internationally.”

“Thomas is thrilled to have the opportunity to work with the Department
of Commerce International Trade Administration to advance the dialogue
and action on these important issues,” said Uphoff. “Many of the
suppliers we’re proud to list as Thomas customers have expressed that
they would like to expand their businesses on a global scale; in
addition to the solutions we offer to help those businesses grow, Thomas
will continue to work closely with the Department to promote their
export trade programs and provide opportunity for all American

About Thomas

Thomas provides actionable information, data, analysis and tools that
align with and support today’s industrial buying process. Its solutions
include the Thomas Network at®,
industry’s largest and most active buyer/supplier network. Through
Thomas Marketing Services, the company provides full-service industrial
marketing programs and website development. Thomas Product Data
Solutions helps manufacturers connect with design engineers through
advanced CAD/BIM and data syndication services. Thomas WebTrax®
provides opportunity intelligence on in-market buyers to help marketing
and sales teams track, identify, and engage high value prospects. Thomas
Insights delivers original content to help marketers and supply chain
professionals inform their decision-making, through leading titles
including Inbound Logistics®, Industrial
Equipment News
® (IEN®),
Thomas Industry Update,
and the Thomas Index™.


Alex Kofsky


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