Mass. Manufacturing Sector Sees Growth

By Anthony Silva, WBZ NewsRadio 1030 New England Business Editor

BOSTON (CBS) – Manufacturers are growing and expanding, according to a new study just released by the Boston Foundation and Northeastern.

The study finds that productivity, employment, output and exports have all grown.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030 New England Business Editor Anthony Silva reports

Thursday’s announcement was made at precision manufacturer AccuRounds in Avon. President and CEO Michael Tamasi tells me his company makes a wide variety of items. Among them are parts that go into semiconductor fabrication equipment, and parts that go into medical testing equipment. Tamasi says 80% of the flu vaccine in the world goes through AccuRounds’ shafts. He says they’ve also made gold and silver pieces that go on high-end flutes. According to Tamasi, this area is a hotbed for flute manufacturers.

Tamasi says AccuRounds competes internationally, and wins. He says the company has doubled employment and tripled revenue over the past ten years, despite the recent recession.

Tamasi is planning to almost double the size of his manufacturing plant, and he says he’s hiring machinists. He says AccuRounds will add equipment as it adds floor space.

Massachusetts officials say the state will add funding for job training, more community college offerings, and easier financing.

Assistant Secretary of Innovation Policy Eric Nakajima tells me the traditional factory has gone hi-tech in Massachusetts. He says baseball bats and baseball gloves are being made in Massachusetts. He says they’re more efficient, their designs are better, and they’re more productive and competitive because they’re using better equipment.

The study finds manufacturers are bullish about the future. Nakajima says that 70% of those responding say they plan to hire in the next five years; 65% say they’re going to invest in expanding their plants. Nakajima says there will be 100,000 job openings in manufacturing in Massachusetts over the next 5-10 years, both through new hires and replacement of those who are retiring.

Nakajima says the biggest challenge is finding enough highly trained and qualified applicants.

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