Manufacturing & Technology

ECONOMIC ANALYSIS: Our love-hate relationship with globalization boomRestricted Content

January 22, 2007
Patrick Barkey
Our generation didn't invent globalization, but we've certainly moved it to a new level. Even here in the isolated Midwest, it's hard to find a product, a job or a community that hasn't been affected by the high degree of connectivity among customers, businesses, and buyers and sellers of all kinds around the globe. We've enjoyed a cornucopia of incredible new products-from cell phones to flat-screen televisions to microprocessor-laden automobiles-that have had many or all of their principal parts made...
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Temp agency jumping into training, construction: Latino-owned Aztec Group's first foray is three-year project to fix up warehouse complex on near-east sideRestricted Content

January 22, 2007
Jennifer Whitson
When Rod Webb moved to the United States from Mexico in 1982, his plan was to make a career as a salesman for an Indianapolis industrial chain manufacturer. But a short stint volunteering for a group that aided migrant workers planted another seed that's now bearing fruit. After eight years running a temporary employment firm that specializes in offering Hispanic employees alternatives to field work, Webb is embarking on an ambitious plan to transform a dilapidated east-side warehouse complex into...
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College targets dropouts with new program: Ivy Tech offers high school failures chance to get degree, pursue higher educationRestricted Content

January 15, 2007
Chris O\'malley
Ivy Tech Community College this month launched a pilot program that allows high school dropouts to earn their diplomas while simultaneously working toward a certificate or associate's degree in college. Intended to improve the state's labor pool, and as a lifeline to dropouts facing a dismal life in the earnings underclass, it will first be rolled out in Bloomington, Lafayette and Terre Haute. The Indianapolis campus also will offer the program aimed at those 19 or older, although a date...
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Fortville firm's helmet pads protect U.S. troopsRestricted Content

January 8, 2007
Chris O'Malley
Fortville-based Genesis Manufacturing makes helmet pads for U.S. troops through Colorado-based Skydex Technologies, which won a contract this fall with the U.S. Air Force for 120,000 helmet pad kits. Most of the helmets have wound up in Iraq, where the military has discovered soldiers need something more than Kevlar-lined helmets to survive roadside mines and exploding Toyotas.
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Labor sector diversification could spur local economy: $200,000 study targets finance, retail and constructionRestricted Content

January 8, 2007
Peter Schnitzler
Sexier industry sectors like life sciences or motorsports get all the press. But to remain robust, the Indianapolis Private Industry Council believes, the area economy needs diversification. The 23-year-old work-force-training not-for-profit believes the nine-county area also should target three tried-and-true industries: finance and insurance; retail, hospitality and restaurants; and construction. IPIC, whose $9 million annual budget comes from public and private grants, plans to spend $200,000 during the first quarter studying the three sectors, which collectively employ 270,000 people in...
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CICP's chief launches raft of initiatives:Restricted Content

January 1, 2007
-Peter Schnitzler
In January, Mark Miles returned to Indianapolis after more than a decade at the helm of the Association of Tennis Professionals to become CEO of the Central Indiana Corporate Partnership. Twelve months later, the CICP looks much different than it did under his predecessor David Goodrich. And it could soon change even more. A former Eli Lilly and Co. executive and aide to Dan Quayle, Miles, 53, has been one of the key players in the potential consolidation of the...
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Carmel company helps clients determine next big thingRestricted Content

December 25, 2006
Justin Hesser
The employees of production-innovation consultant Insight2 interview customers, but they also watch and videotape them using various products. That footage then is dissected to see how consumers deal with problems they encounter. More times than not, the result is a new product intended to satisfy needs consumers didn't even know they had.
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'Old fashioned' values manufacture Motionwear's growth: Acquisition should fuel leotard-maker's expansionRestricted Content

December 18, 2006
Peter Schnitzler
It might seem as though the low cost of labor overseas has shifted the entire U.S. textile industry to Asia, never to return. Indianapolis-based leotard-maker Motionwear Inc. proves otherwise. The 120-employee company was acquired this month by the Italian sportswear firm FILA for an undisclosed sum and, as a result, it's poised to expand locally. Tom Wilson started the company in his attic in 1988 because his daughter Erin, an aspiring dancer, couldn't find performance apparel she liked in retail...
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ECONOMIC ANALYSIS: Amid carnage, state still a force in manufacturingRestricted Content

December 18, 2006
Patrick Barkey
What puts Indiana on the map in the world's eyes? From an image point of view, it might be race cars, basketball or even David Letterman. But in terms of economic footprint, it is our manufactured products and our goods-making and goods-moving expertise that stand out. We are a world-class manufacturer of everything from rolled steel to artificial limbs, and we employ more people and produce more output in manufacturing, proportionately speaking, than any other state in the nation. If...
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Carving a niche outside Louisville: Hoosier Bat Co. finds success with Major Leaguers, amateur baseball playersRestricted Content

December 11, 2006
Scott Olson
A three-piece wooden bat David Cook developed in 1989 became popular among professional baseball players, but ended up nearly devastating his upstart manufacturing company. Major League Baseball banned the bat just a year later after what Cook contends was a fierce lobbying effort from his largest rival, Louisville Slugger. The bat-made of ash, hickory and maple-is fused by finger jointing and remains in use at the amateur levels. The durability of the bat rivals that of an aluminum model, Cook...
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Hoosier Tire still racing: For nearly a half-century, Lakeville company has competed with the big boysRestricted Content

December 11, 2006
Anthony Schoettle
When the rubber meets the road, auto racing experts say there are few-if any-companies that outperform Lakeville-based Hoosier Racing Tire. Hoosier tires, industry sources said, are equal to their better-known brethren in racing-related sales and on-track performance. "This company has gone head-to-head with Goodyear on the biggest of all racing circuits," said Dick Berggren, editor of Speedway Illustrated and a retired racer. "I can't think of a business where the costs of entry are steeper or the level of technology...
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Marketing firm targets tech types: Seven-figure deal shows DGS' diversification is workingRestricted Content

December 4, 2006
Anthony Schoettle
When DGS Marketing Engineers signed a blockbuster deal this September with one of the nation's largest industrial chemical companies, owners of the ad agency knew making their micro-niche just a little broader was going to pay big dividends. The local marketing and advertising agency recently decided to step outside its super-specific niche of working with companies that make machine tools to target companies working in just about any technical field. "This is a specialized advertising field that goes beyond mere...
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PROFILE: Roby's Plumbing and Heating Co. Inc.: Plumber survived by staying flexible Firm entered new market, shifted business prioritiesRestricted Content

December 4, 2006
Ed Callahan
Roby's Plumbing and Heating Co. Inc. Plumber survived by staying flexible Firm entered new market, shifted business priorities Those "big box" home-supply stores make the world a scary place for independent companies such as Roby's Plumbing and Heating Co. Inc. No way can businesses like Roby compete with the big boxes' prices on pipes and other plumbing materials, owner Brad Roby said, but they can offer something the others don't-service. "Home centers provide cheap products but poor service," Roby said....
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EYE ON THE PIE: Indiana: a primer for the LegislatureRestricted Content

November 27, 2006
Morton Marcus
The General Assembly is organizing itself. This is more difficult than getting fleas to join a union. But I am being disrespectful. My purpose this week is benign. I present for the consideration of our 150 legislators certain facts about Indiana and where it ranks nationally. The data are from the 2005 American Community Survey conducted by the U.S. Bureau of the Census. First, let's consider sex. Of the 6.1 million Hoosiers, 50.9 percent are females, which leaves 49.1 percent...
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Schools warm to economic development: Colleges crank out programs to fit latest initiativesRestricted Content

November 20, 2006
Chris O\'malley
Academic purists often hold contempt for politicians and executives seeking help with economic development initiatives. It doesn't take a political science degree to wonder if someone is trying to stoke votes, ambitions or profits-on the cheap. But in Indiana, more colleges are tailoring their curriculum to support economic development priorities, realizing what's good for the region can be good for their enrollment. "An increasing number of universities don't view themselves as ivory towers anymore," said Uday Sukhatme, executive vice chancellor...
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State offers red carpet to ethanol plants despite environmental concernsRestricted Content

November 20, 2006
Chris O'Malley
The Indiana Department of Environmental Management proposes a change in regulations that could reduce the time it takes to approve air permits for ethanol plants. The change would establish industry-specific control standards for emissions.
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Merger would consolidate technology initiatives under CICPRestricted Content

November 13, 2006
Peter Schnitzler
Technology advocate Techpoint is considering merging into the Central Indiana Corporate Partnership--a move that would leave CICP CEO Mark Miles atop all three of Indiana's major business-development initiatives.
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BEHIND THE NEWS: After taking blows, bank repairs relations with Lilly familyRestricted Content

November 13, 2006
Greg Andrews
No bank wants to leave a customer steamed, especially when that customer is the mighty Lilly family. Great news for National City Bank of Indiana: It's finally back on the family's good side. Court papers filed in Marion Superior Court in recent months show the six nieces and nephews of heiress Ruth Lilly are increasingly satisfied with the bank's handling of her financial affairs. Lilly, 91, is the sole surviving greatgrandchild of the pharmaceutical firm's founder. The bank, part of...
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Techpoint's new leader sees room to grow: Indiana making progress, but could do better, he saysRestricted Content

November 13, 2006
Scott Olson
Techpoint, a locally based technology trade group that represents the interests of about 330 members statewide, is undergoing a transition in leadership. Jim Jay, 37, has been named interim CEO following the resignation of Cameron Carter, who has led the organization since 2003. Directors should begin a formal search for a permanent replacement the first of the year. Whether Jay lands the top job remains to be seen. But in the meantime, the Butler University graduate with an entrepreneurial spirit...
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Bridge project not too far for Zionsville firm: Timber-frame specialist has big role in rebuilding Parke County landmarkRestricted Content

November 6, 2006
Scott Olson
The Bridgeton Grist Mill in southern Parke County sat so close to a covered bridge that was destroyed by arson last year that firefighters hosed down the historic structure to keep it from burning, too. The mill, which has churned out flour since 1863, predated by five years the wooden trestle considered one of the most scenic of the 31 covered bridges in the western Indiana county. But a replicated bridge finished in early October resembles the original so closely...
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Former Lt. Gov. Davis seeks support for Model IndianaRestricted Content

November 6, 2006
Peter Schnitzler
Former Lt. Gov. Kathy Davis is attempting to build a virtual version of Indiana for policymakers to wander. If successful, the new IT system could help shape Statehouse debate on a host of subjects.
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NaClor picks spot for $40 million plant: South-side parcel considered for chemical factoryRestricted Content

November 6, 2006
Jennifer Whitson
Backers of a proposed $40 million Indianapolis chemical plant are eyeing a south-side parcel near White River, but neighbors worry fumes from the facility will drag down property values nearby. In the spring, local economic development groups trumpeted Indianapolisbased NaClor Inc.'s decision to build the plant here. In return for the 53 new jobs-making bleach and other chemicals used in soaps, detergents and water quality treatment-the state promised $2.8 million in tax cuts and training grants, and the city offered...
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Foreign auto plants-yes, foreign automobiles-no: Ford and Chevy tops in all 92 Indiana countiesRestricted Content

November 6, 2006
Anthony Schoettle
Hoosier workers and community leaders want Honda and Toyota jobs, but the vast majority of them don't want their cars, at least not yet. At a time when employment by the Big Three automakers is plummeting throughout the state, 80.6 percent of Indiana vehicles registered by the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles are domestic. Hoosiers' taste for domestic models is in stark contrast with the rest of the country. Nationwide, domestics account for just 51 percent of the market. "I...
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Lucas Oil launches high-end motorcycle biz in IndyRestricted Content

November 6, 2006
Anthony Schoettle
Little known in this market less than a year ago, Lucas Oil Products is roaring into town with its first brick-and-mortar operation. Founder Forrest Lucas has set up a sister company, Lucas Cycles, to make fancy, fuel-injected motorcycles.
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Developer has big plans for long-vacant drive-in: N.Y. firm has 93-acre Lawrence site under contractRestricted Content

September 25, 2006
Jennifer Whitson
A 93-acre former drive-in south of the former Fort Benjamin Harrison has sat vacant since the theater closed in 1993. But now a Rochester, N.Y., developer has agreed to buy the property and envisions building retail space plus either a light-industrial business park or a medical campus. If it comes to pass, the large development could kick-start Lawrence's efforts to revitalize struggling portions of Pendleton Pike. Norry Management Corp. has had the land under contract since spring and is preparing...
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  1. Great article and post scripts by Mike L (Great addition to IBJ BTW). Bobby's stubborn as a mule, and doubt if he ever comes back to IU. But the love he would receive would be enormous. Hope he shows some time, but not counting on it.

  2. When the Indiana GOP was going around the State selling the Voucher bill they were promising people that the vouchers would only be for public charter schools. They lied. As usual.

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  4. Jim, your "misleading" numbers comment is spot on. This is the spin these posers are putting on it. News flash, fans: these guys lie. They are not publicly traded so no one holds them accountable for anything they say. The TV numbers are so miniscule to begin with any "increase" produces double digit "growth" numbers. It's ridiculous to think that anything these guys have done has awakened the marketplace. What have they done? Consolidate the season so they run more races on consecutive weekends? And this creates "momentum." Is that the same momentum you enjoy when you don't race between August and March? Keep in mind that you are running teams who barely make ends meet ragged over the summer to accomplish this brilliant strategy of avoiding the NFL while you run your season finale at midnight on the East Coast. But I should not obfuscate my own point: any "ratings increase" is exactly what Jim points to - the increased availability of NBC Sports in households. Look fans, I love the sport to but these posers are running it off a cliff. Miles wants to declare victory and then run for Mayor. I could go on and on but bottom line for God's sake don't believe a word they say. Note to Anthony - try doing just a little research instead of reporting what these pretenders say and then offering an "opinion" no more informed than the average fan.

  5. If he's finally planning to do the right thing and resign, why not do it before the election? Waiting until after means what - s special election at tax payer expense? Appointment (by whom?) thus robbing the voters of their chance to choose? Does he accrue some additional financial advantage to waiting, like extra pension payments? What's in it for him? That's the question that needs to be asked.

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