Manufacturing Today - Spring 2010 - (Page 54)

Parkson Corp. / HQ: Fort Lauderdale, Fla. / Proj. 2010 sales: $100 million / Employees: 130 / Grant Brown, VP of marketing: “We’re looking at outsourcing more as a means of improving flexibility and improving quality, versus reducing costs.” parkson’s patented hiox ultraflex aeration panels are produced by jacobs machine and tool in indiana. Flexible Sourcing parkson works with global manufacturers to create less-expensive, high-quality products. by russ gager The cost of shipping a 50-foot-tall tank filled with sand around the world can add up, so Parkson Corp., a supplier of process engineering components and systems for water and wastewater treatment, works with manufacturing companies worldwide to produce that tank as close to its final destination as possible. “Over the past four to five years, Parkson has made a concerted effort to move away from manufacturing and focus instead on partnering with manufacturers who have much deep54 SPRING 2010 and Germany, and speaking with Italian manufacturers,” Brown reveals. “We have recently established relationships with Latin American manufacturers in Mexico and Honduras. “What we see is a pretty interesting opportunity in somewhat of a hybrid,” Brown asserts, “where we can take our process knowledge, our water industry knowledge, and the information we’re gleaning from our customers, and impart that on the manufacturing process without having to own all the capital equipment, all the employees and all the capacity. “We are increasingly moving towards a focused manufacturing structure or posture, where we would build deep relationships with fewer manufacturers, and allow them to manufacture more products for us and work together to value-engineer them,” Brown says. “We’ve seen some examples of companies that have built deep partnerships with third-party manufacturers, where the OEM’s employees would go and live at a manufacturer’s site and spend time there on a shortterm and medium-term basis to drive down costs and improve product capabilities. This is something that we’re trying to emulate.” Back Home in Indiana An example of this type of relationship is the one between Parkson and Jacobs Machine and Tool in Mooresville, Ind., for the manufacture of Parkson’s HiOx Ultraflex aeration panels. Parkson developed and patented the panels, but it works closely with Jacobs on the manufacturing and quality control techniques to produce them. “One Parkson employee has spent at least six months at Jacobs working with them on manufacturing, quality control, packing and shipping procedures,” Brown relates. “It’s a product we used to make ourselves. We now er manufacturing capacities and economies of scale,” explains Grant Brown, vice president of marketing and strategic partnerships. “We also began to look at where the products were being sold around the world and how to best optimize the manufacturing locations based on sales.” Today, Parkson has 200 to 300 different suppliers it works with around the world located in Asia, the United States and Europe. “We primarily are working with vendors in Western Europe China,

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Manufacturing Today - Spring 2010

Manufacturing Today - Spring 2010
Global Strategies
Cost Concerns
Growth Opportunities
Continuous Improvement
Business Value
Juanita’s Foods
Les Plats du Chef
Gardner Denver
Smeal Fire Apparatus Co.
Club Car Inc.
Parkson Corp.
MKS Instruments Inc.
Amity Technology
Co-Operative Industries
Corbi Plastics
Elyria/Hodge Foundries Co.
Inteplast Group Ltd.
Willbanks Metals
Zotos International Inc.
Akron Foundry Co.
Alo North America
Bosal International
First American Plastic Molding Enterprise
MAC Equipment
Mayville Engineering Co. Inc.
Kurtz Bros. Inc.
Aesco Electronics
Code 3 Inc.
Columbia Marking Tools
Euro-Rite Cabinets
Fampec Technology LLC
Faubion Associates Inc.
Ginsey Industries Inc.
Imagineering Finishing Technologies
Imperial Woodworks Inc.
Innovative Lighting
Liburdi Dimetrics
MTC Transformers
Plastiques GPR
S.A. Robotics
Sunrise Windows
Positran Manufacturing Inc.
Manufacturing Tomorrow

Manufacturing Today - Spring 2010