President’s Message – July, 2018
Two years after announcing the Accelerate Capital Campaign, CEG continues to see new companies and regional organizations becoming investors and helping shape the Capital Region’s economy. Our newest investors are:
• Bender Lane Advisory
• BestPass Inc.
• Black Chamber of Commerce
• The Bonadio Group
• Pierce Communications
• C&S Companies
• Glans Falls National Bank
• Redburn Development
• Taconic Biosciences
• UBS Financial Services
In May, CEG received $110,000 from the KeyBank Business Boost & Build program to advance a collaboration with the Community Loan Fund of the Capital Region (CLFCR) and Excelsior Growth Fund (EGF) for growing the Capital Region’s ranks of minority and women owned business enterprises (MWBEs) and disadvantaged small businesses. Under the program, powered by JumpStart, CEG Business Growth Solutions staff will hold and sponsor events and workshops for these targeted businesses and provide them with technical assistance. CLFCR and EGF will provide loans and other services to the targeted businesses.
KeyBank Foundation Grant
In June, CEG received $250,000 from KeyBank to support the below manufacturing training initiatives:
• Expansion of HVCC’s Manufacturing Technology Pathways Project, a short-term, stackable credential training program, or “boot camp,” HVCC launched this training program in January 2017. It involves an 80-hour manufacturing boot camp that includes online courses, in-person instruction.
• Launch of the Certified Production Technician (CPT) program at Schenectady County Community College (SCCC). The CPT program is an eight- to 12-week-long certificate course that is intended to skill-up incumbent workers who are looking to advance their career, or enhance the education of an unemployed or underemployed person who possesses some manufacturing experience. There are five individual certificate modules: safety; quality practices and measurement; manufacturing processes and production; maintenance awareness and green production.
• Incorporation of strategies identified in our 2017 Advanced Manufacturing Pathways Project study in a CEG marketing campaign for the HVCC and SUNY SCCC training programs, with the goal of having 25 percent of their enrollees hail from low- to moderate-income households.
Business Growth Solutions
A National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) Q1 survey of manufacturers served by CEG Business Growth Solutions(BGS) found our Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) center had a $28.9 million economic impact in the Capital Region. These economic impacts earned BGS a Cooperative Agreement Recipient (CAR) Current Quarter Performance score of 90 – tying its highest score achieved in the past five years.
• Increased Sales: $5,185,000.00
• Retained Sales: $9,355,000.00
• Cost Savings: $503,500.00
• Plant Equipment Amount: $1,427,000.00
• Info System Amount: $250,000.00
• Workforce Practices Amount: $199,940.00
• Other Areas Amount: $117,000.00
• Saved Investments Amount: $23,268.00
• Jobs Created: 21
• Jobs Retained: 224
• Jobs Multiplier: $48,387.00
• Jobs Created Impact: $1,016,127.00
• Jobs Retained Impact: $10,838,688.00
• Total Economic Impact: $28,915,523.00
CEG’s 22nd annual Technology Awards at the Rivers Casino and Report were a hit, attracting 280 attendees. Congratulations to this year’s awardees:
• Economic Winner: GLOBALFOUNDRIES
• Lift-Off: iSimulate
• Start-Up Star: Inspect Point
• Technology Innovation: Kirsch Helmets
• Judges’ Choice: Plug Power
• Technology Trailblazer: Dr. Michael Liehr, SUNY Poly – AIM Photonics
• Jeffrey A. Lawrence Lifetime Contributor Award: Amy Johnson, Albany Med BAAC
Workforce Development Initiatives
In May, Hudson Valley Community College (HVCC) ran its second manufacturing boot camp. They graduated 18 students who will now enter the manufacturing workforce. Over the course of the boot camp the students met with 14 employers to learn about career opportunities in the region. CEG also assisted in hosting an open house for the HVCC program and had over 20 participants provide feedback on the curriculum. CEG also partnered with the New York State Business Council to do an open house for a forthcoming SUNY Schenectady County Community College (SCCC) program to further refine its Certified Production Technician (CPT) curriculum as well.
During the second quarter, CEG represented the Capital Region at the following industry conferences and events:
• International Off-Shore Wind Partnering Forum, Princeton, NJ
• InterSolar Summit USA East, Brooklyn, NY
• Consultant Connect Summit, New York, NY
• SEMI ASMC Conference, Saratoga Springs, NY
• IAMC Spring Forum, Savannah, GA
• BIO International , Boston, MA
• Electronic Entertainment Expo, Los Angeles, CA
• Select USA Investment Summit, Washington, DC
CEG’s Talent Connect continues to expand its programming in Q2. We are in the planning stages of forming a veterans outreach program to better attract transitioning service members to the Capital Region and to serve local veterans and their families. More news about this to come.
Since April 1, the Talent Connect team presented to Fort Drum soldiers in an Onward to Opportunities program, which is assisting with their transition to civilian careers. Karen Wolff discussed the Capital Region’s key industries, CEG investors’ job opportunities and the lifestyle here. The following day she exhibited at their full career fair on behalf of CEG investors. During April and May, Karen also represented CEG and our investors at Columbia-Greene Recruitment Expo, Veterans Job Fair at the Albany Stratton VA Medical Center and the Ravena Career Fair. We are gearing up for several career fairs in August through November, including the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Worcester Polytechnic Institute. Through our New-Hire Navigation Service, we have assisted 35 relocated professional new hires (referred by our investors), connecting them to local resources, assisting them with cultural transitioning, and more. Of the 35 new hires, we are also assisting 17 spouse/partners with career support.
Capital Region Economic Development Council
CEG again will play a lead role in helping the Capital Region Economic Development Council (CREDC) prepare its 2018 Progress Report, which will be a key component that the Strategic Implementation Assessment Team (SIAT) will evaluate for Round VIII of the Regional Economic Development Council Awards. The CREDC last month reorganized its informal “writing team” into an official SIAT Prep Workgroup, which I am co-chairing with Lauren Payne of Spiral Design Studio. The workgroup’s mission is “To prepare presentation material required for the SIAT committee review of the CREDC annual report.” Other members include representatives from KeyBank, UAlbany, Albany Medical Center and Hudson Valley AgriBusiness Development Corp. CEG assisted in preparing the CREDC’s 151-page 2017 Progress Report, which details the council’s progress in implanting economic initiatives, identifies priority projects and provides an overview of the state of the region. In Round VII of the REDC awards, the Capital Region was $85 million for 110 projects, a 2.3 percent funding increase over the previous year’s haul.
Q2 Economic Scorecards
The Capital Region’s economy is progressing at a steady pace with its number of Q2 positive-trending indicators remaining unchanged from the previous quarter. The manufacturing sector remains the driving force behind our regional economy. However, there are issues at the federal level related to tariffs and to the cost of raw materials that may have caused the number of negative-trending indicators to increase.