“Reshoring” Opportunities Abound at Del Mar Electronics & Design Show

If your company is considering ”reshoring” manufacturing of some parts, assemblies, or products to the U. S., then you should attend the 18th annual Del Mar Electronics & Design Show, which will be held at the Del Mar Fairgrounds (Map) Wednesday May 2nd, 10am – 5pm and Thursday May 3rd 10am – 3pm.  Admission to the show, the seminars, and parking at the show are ALL FREE.

This is the only industrial trade show for manufacturers held annually in the San Diego region so this is the best opportunity for companies to find local and regional suppliers to “reshore” manufacturing to the U. S.

To help your company analyze the true Total Cost of Ownership to determine whether or not you should be returning manufacturing to America, I will be giving a presentation on “Returning Manufacturing to America” at 10 AM on Wednesday May 2nd.    I will be considering:

  • Hidden costs of doing business offshore that comprise a true understanding of the “Total Cost of Ownership”
  • How you can calculate these costs utilizing the Total Cost of Ownership worksheet calculator developed by Harry Moser of the Reshoring Initiative
  • Case stories reviewing some of the problems companies have experienced in outsourcing offshore
  • Reasons why some companies are choosing to “reshore” manufacturing to the U.S.

For the past 15 years, manufacturers have outsourced their manufacturing offshore in Asia, especially in China, to reduce costs to keep or increase market share.  However, the supply chain dynamics are changing, and the cost savings of outsourcing to China are eroding due to higher labor rates and shipping costs.  In the last few years, there have also been many news reports about outsourcing horror stories regarding poison or tainted Chinese products, Chinese counterfeit parts, intellectual property infringement, quality problems, and lawsuits so many companies are rethinking their decision about manufacturing in China.

In August 2011, the Boston Consulting Group’s released their first report Made in America, Again: Why Manufacturing Will Return to the U.S., explaining how rising wages and other forces are steadily eroding China’s once-overwhelming cost advantage as an export platform for North America.  By around 2015, BCG concluded that when higher U.S. worker productivity, supply chain and logistical advantages, and other factors are taken fully into account, it may start to be more economical to manufacture many goods in the U.S.

Now, a new BCG report, “U.S. Manufacturing Nears the Tipping Point, Which Industries, Why, and How Much?” released on March 22, 2012 by Harold L. Sirkin, Michael Zinser, Douglas Hohner, and Justin Rose has identified “seven industry groups that account for $200 billion in goods imported from China for which rising costs in China will likely prompt manufacturing of goods consumed in the U.S. to return to the U.S.”

The report predicts that production of 10 to 30 percent of U.S. imports from China in these industries, which account for approximately 70 percent of goods that the U.S. imports from that nation, could shift to the U.S. before the end of the decade, adding $20 billion to $55 billion in output annually to the domestic economy.”  The tipping-point sectors are transportation goods, appliances and electrical equipment, furniture, plastic and rubber products, machinery, fabricated metal products, and computers and electronics.

BCG predicts that improved U.S. competitiveness and rising costs in China will put the U.S. in a strong position to add 2 million to 3 million jobs in a range of industries and an estimated $100 billion in annual output by the end of the decade which would reduce unemployment by 1.5 to 2 percentage points, and lower the nonoil-related merchandise deficit by 25 to 35 percent.

According to a new survey which BCG conducted in late February, “More than a third of U.S.-based manufacturing executives at companies with sales greater than $1 billion are planning to bring back production to the United States from China or are considering it.”

The top factors cited as driving future decisions on production locations:  labor costs (57 percent), product quality (41 percent), ease of doing business (29 percent), and proximity to customers (28 percent).  In addition, 92 percent said they believe that labor costs in China “will continue to escalate,” and 70 percent agreed that “sourcing in China is more costly than it looks on paper.”

In the new survey, “67 percent of respondents in rubber and plastic products, 42 percent in machinery, 41 percent in electronics, 40 percent in computers, and 35 percent in fabricated metal products said they expect that their companies will reshore production from China to the U.S.”

“Not long ago, many companies regarded China as the low-cost default option for manufacturing,” observed Michael Zinser, a BCG partner who leads the firm’s manufacturing work in the Americas. “This survey shows that companies are coming to the conclusion surprisingly fast that the U.S. is becoming more competitive when the total costs of manufacturing are accounted for.”  To request a summary of the survey findings, please contact David Fondiller at fondiller.david@bcg.com.

The Del Mar show will also feature a number of other free technical seminars.  A few of the topics are:  “Using LinkedIn as a Business Development Tool,” “New Energy Storage Options for the Transportation Sector,” “Best of SolidWorks Tips and Tricks,” and “Counterfeit Electronic Components Are No Longer a Threat; They are a Reality.”  For the full seminar schedule, go to www.vts.com.  In addition, all attendees are invited to the Post Time Party, Wednesday, May 2nd, from 5 – 7pm, with free refreshments provided thanks to sponsorship by Quality Systems Integrated Systems, Luscombe Engineering, Concisys Electronic Manufacturing Services, and National Test Equipment.

My company will be exhibiting products for the companies we represent at Booths 207 – 209 in the Bing Crosby Hall, which is to the left of the main entrance to the show.   We look forward to seeing you at the show!


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