AAMA membership addresses growing global competition at Florida meeting
The threat of growing competition from overseas companies, particularly those in China, was a top concern for many at the Annual Meeting for the American Architectural Manufacturers Association of Schaumburg, Ill., Feb. 11-14 in Marco Island, Fla.
“We’re seeing a steady increase in competition from China and other countries. This is a major competition threat for manufacturers,” said Jerry Jasinowski, president of The Manufacturing Institute, an arm of the National Association of Manufacturers in Washington, D.C. Jasinowski was the keynote speaker during the luncheon seminar Feb. 13.
However, manufacturers need to view the growing global economy that has supported this increase in competition as an opportunity, he said.
“The competition is severe, but the opportunities are even greater in the global market,” Jasinowski said.
U.S. manufacturers need to recognize their strengths: product diversity and innovation. “We need to look at new technology in order to be competitive,” Jasinowski said.
Michael Collins, senior associate of investment banking at Jordan, Knauff & Co. in Chicago, said U.S. manufacturers also need to understand the advantages and disadvantages Chinese competitors have in the U.S. market. Collins spoke during the marketing seminar, "The Coming Wave of Chinese Competition," Feb. 12.
Chinese manufacturers have several advantages over U.S. companies, including lower costs for labor, plant construction, land, taxes, energy and commodities, Collins said. Chinese companies also have favorable exchange rates, lower regulatory compliance costs than in the United States and Europe, and inexpensive tooling. However, Chinese manufacturers also face disadvantages when entering the U.S. market, Collins said.
“They have a lack of understanding of the U.S. marketplace, U.S. testing requirements and value-added service,” Collins said. “Distance is also a big factor, particularly with new products. This provides a significant opportunity for U.S. companies to be more nimble.”
To learn more about how global companies are affected by growing Chinese competition, click here.
Read more about the AAMA meeting from the Feb. 13 edition of e-glass weekly and the Feb. 14 edition of WDweekly.